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President Barack Obama outlined the changes he wants our nation to make in his State of the Union address earlier this week. In a panel discussion on “NewsOne Now,” Jeff Johnson, Maya Rockeymoore, Rashad Robinson, and Christopher Metzler say that it is the citizens who have to make those changes a reality.

Congressmen have to be held accountable and given a timeline. “People need to be on the phone with their Congressperson,” Johnson said.”People need to work with the organizations in their community. There has to be a level of public will. I think sometimes there are parts of the population who believe public will doesn’t really matter, and that public will helps politicians. That public will helps corporate America to sometimes be engaged. I, for one, as an activist, want to see more of that public engagement that shifts public will.”

Meztler says Blacks can learn a few things from the Tea Party.”Lesson one, be loud, even if you’re wrong,” he said.  “Lesson number two is, as it relates to the off-year elections, just because there isn’t a star candidate at the top of the ballot … make your voice be heard. And, three, make some noise.”

Watch the entire panel discussion below:

Be sure to tune in to NewsOne Now with Roland Martin, weekdays at 7 a.m. EST.

SOTU Call To Action: What Blacks Can Learn From The Tea Party  was originally published on