Look at any major city in this country plagued by violence and drugs and I’ll show you a city devoid of something that has nothing to do with more law enforcement, security and guns. That something that’s missing is hope.
You can throw all the money, programs and political promises in the world at the problem but without hope, it’s useless. The killings taking place in Chicago, Detroit, New Orleans and Philadelphia are mostly gun crimes by black people against black people.
Poverty, lack of opportunities and poor education are part of the problem, but you can’t put it all on that. Black people have lived under conditions this bad and worse without resorting to the kind of violence we’re seeing today.
Our biggest and most important task is to try to reach the children…to make sure they’re getting the kind love and nurturing that leads to them feeling hopeful about their future.
The old, standby answer that “it starts in the home” isn’t as valid as it used to be. That works when the home is stable, but what about kids who have lived in places that are mired in dysfunction…drugs, alcohol, abuse, violence, mental illness…what about them? Who will give them hope?
We used to understand that we are all family, and if a child was lacking something we had, it was our duty to share with them. When this way of thinking was prevalent, communities thrived, in some cases, in spite of poverty, substandard schools, etc. Our communities weren’t perfect, but they were a lot better than they are now.
I’m all for programs geared to help young people. They’re needed and they work. Ask people who grew up in the 70s about the impact the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA) had on their lives. Then ask them what happened to their cities when Ronald Reagan abolished the program. It opened the door to more gang violence, drugs and other crimes. Many of the people caught up in that web, for whatever reason, are the parents and grandparents of the teens and young adults wreaking havoc on our communities, and they’re having kids too.
Programs can only do so much if people are empty. Until we start filling in the gaps for children and teens and even adults with no one to let them know that they matter, we will continue to see an onslaught of violence by us, against us.
Also On Black America Web:
This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (6/18-6/24)
25 photos Launch gallery
1. Me & the homie @jaleelwhite #RujohnFoundation Happy to be in Jamaica! Good times
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5. Good Morning. Early day in Detroit! Making press rounds for @thebossnetwork's Ladies That Lead Tour. Thank you @traycemadre and @colourbynumbr for my glam.
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6. POWER the best show on TV @djenvy, Queens we so big out here. #EFFENVODKA #FRIGO
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7. They said u lost a step, wasn't explosive as once was, the best days was in the real view, questioned your drive, your leadership, your commitment, you don't have killer instinct, going back home is the worst mistake in your career, he got the coach fired, players traded, won't work between him and Kyrie, Him and Kev won't work, love your teammates to much, there's no way he can deliver a championship in his hometown, etc etc etc.... But guess what THATS NONE OF MY BUSINESS #StriveForGreatness #ThisOneIsForTheLand #PutSomeRespeckOnMyName Hahahaha!!! Yes sir
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8. Oooooh weeee this man right here is responsible for at least three of our four babies!! #JOE ❤❤❤🎤 #rnb #king #voicelikebutter #ForPeetesSake
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9. Hanging with my @abcnetwork family! @abcunclebuck tonite y'all check us out ! @anthonyanderson @traceeellisross
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10. My broski ( @sayeedshahidi ) and I are on Top 5 Live on @go90 at 5 (which is super duper close)! Make sure to tune in :) #UncleBuck #Blackish
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11. Lights out💤 #GoodNight
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12. Late nights mornings
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13. Ran into the lovely talented @siedahgarrett on this brutiful favvuz deh!
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14. #halal #love #thedargans #kattwilliamsSHOW #mashallah when that Jennah piece HIT!! @sweetjennahcollection glasses by @baddieglamaccessories LIZ 😍 @dynamiteko top @dazzledmv and jeans @thevision414 and shoes: @louboutinworld
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15. Big Hair and Optical Illusions #OceanDrive #MiamiLiving #coverparty
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16. MAMA and THE SAVAGES ... ⚓️ #supportyourlocalgirlgang
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17. From the bottom of my ❤️, thank you new followers & old! & hello fellow night owls! #grateful #racheltrue #naturalhair #curlyhair #curlygirl #healthyhair
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18. I feel so grateful because I met these amazing young minds, visiting from Houston TX, during their college tour stop today at #usc.These students are ALL extraordinary and embody academic excellence so I'm humbled to have shared a few moments with them to applaud and celebrate their bright futures ahead! Thank you @EmergeFellows for inviting me to speak and blessing me with your love and attention this afternoon!
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19. Happy Fathers Day Pops. U taught me how to be a man. Lessons of love, hard work & gratefulness. Sorry the fishing didn't stick. LOL. I Love U!
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20. Sky Zone and Ice Cream! Best Fathers Day Ever!! Photo credit @mariahcarey
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21. Look what finally came in the mail 😎 #mtvmovieawards2016 💥+🌽! #straightouttacompton
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22. Claudia Jordan: ....
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23. 'Member that time I almost knocked a bajillion dollar camera off the car? Really? Yeah, me neither! #Greenleaf Episode 2 comin atcha!
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24. Full of love. #birthday #Cabo
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25. Oh hey! Look who just joined Snapchat
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