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The saying “people hear what they want to hear” certainly applies to my commentary last week.

Last week I talked about parental responsibility.

Inspired by the tragic death of a two-year old boy whose biological father was football star Adrian Peterson, at least for the last two months Peterson knew him.

It’s a sad story all the way around and the more we learn the sadder it gets.

Sad because the child is dead due to bad decisions on the part of a number of adults in his life; sad because we continue to make excuses for the bad behavior of those adults; including his own mother and father.

It’s sad because some people think there’s an imaginary time period to be held before we tell the truth about how these adults failed this baby; a two year old is still a baby to me.

Sad because just by talking about it, by bringing awareness to the people who failed this baby; it exposes the wounds and defenses of many who are listening who may be absent or uninvolved parents.

Sad because it’s too personal for some people to hear. It hits to close to home, it hurts.

Sad that by exposing those individual and collective wounds; rather than become introspective; many choose to lash out, to attack the messenger and not the problem.

Life coach Tony Robbins has a very profound quote that reads: “Free yourself from the disease of making others wrong and you’ll free yourself from the disease of making yourself wrong.”

If you follow Robbins’ quote, you’ll have a lot more energy to create solutions instead of creating problems for you and for others.

I want this message to stick with you, so I’ll keep it simple.

By thinking about something or someone critically does not mean that one is being negative nor insensitive nor judgmental.

It simply means that you are using your intelligence.

Taking their or your experience and coming to a critical or logical conclusion or sometimes a logical answer.

It can mean that you are evolving past “Group Think”, where everyone thinks the same thing and thinks others in their group should think the same thing.

It means you are opening the door and your mind to diversity of thought.

People who are and have been discriminated against, especially minorities and women should welcome, encourage, even insist on diversity of thought. Not everyone thinks like you.

Diversity of thought led some white people to see the light when it came to slavery, Jim Crow and voting rights.

Minorities must insist on diversity of thought because it’s true freedom and the one main reason that we even have freedom now.

Therefore, we cannot set imaginary timelines and rules on when it’s proper to seek solutions for preventing children from dying because of negligent adults, negligent parents.

Adrian Peterson sought no such imaginary grace period himself; he kept right on playing football.

Some of the same loud voices who proclaim some sort of imaginary grace period for Adrian Peterson to mourn a child he didn’t know are some of the same voices who immediately yelled the loudest that we must do something about guns and violence as soon as tragedies like Newtown or Aurora happened.

They sought no grace period when 20 children were gunned down; so, whether we like it or not, uncomfortable or not, we must take responsibility for our own stuff.

Otherwise, we are just as responsible when the next child is lost.

9 thoughts on “End the Finger Pointing: Don Lemon Says ‘We Must Take Responsibility for Our Own Stuff’

  1. Inoe Sen on said:

    The only safe answer is that we are living in the last days. That is a popular answer when we stray from GOOD intentions or cannot find the correct words to explain the situation. So if we are expecting death to come about for the entire world, are we that final storm? Are we collectively rotting and displeasing to God? When such unfortunate occurrences happen daily, in the home or at school, how can the child be blamed for being a victim of relentless attacks against children? The children are only living in a world of sacrifice that has had plenty of time to get it right by 2013. Why are we not able to get it right? Why are our children the victims over and over again? Are we really the problem? Are we that great big final storm that can bring about death in its aftermath? Are we the reason why we cannot live the promises that are freely given to us to be fruitful and multiply? Most importantly, maybe there is no answer because there is no excuse for not protecting our children.

  2. Why does Tom Joyner have this idiot making commentary that’s so stale? Haven’t we heard that nonsense before? Don Lemon doesn’t care about ordinary black folks, he is scolding us to make a name for himself and advance his career. That’s an old trick guys like Clarence Thomas used to rise to the top.
    LOL, the moment Don Lemon criticizes President Obama Tom will get rid of his butt!

  3. the Timekeeper on said:

    I agree with you Cindy, good point!!!!! Yes, I know all are jumpoing on Don Lemon’s bandwagon these days. Sure, taking our own responsibiity is something we all should do, no problem there.
    Don though seems to have jumped form jjournalsim to simply down and out pontificating his own personal points of view. I think the Amens he got from o’Reilly and Faux news have started to make him believe his own hype. In other words, he is drinking his own kool-aid. Yes, he is right on the responsibility thing no doubt. But he is also very judgemental at the same time. I much prefer Stephanie Robinson, Jeff Johnson and Roland Martin. All of them spoke truth without making you feeel like they were above it all. You can like Don Lemon all you want. He’s okay but sometimes but that Lemon is awfullly sour! His is not commentary which is what it is being passed off as. No, he wants more applause from his boys over at Fox.

  4. Well Don lemon you can focus on our community all you want too. It will not change the fact that you DEFLECTED from justice for Trayvon Martin when you agreed with BILL OREILY on Faux News instead of putting the blame and talking about ZIMMERMAN, you went and talk about fucking sagging pants now why don’t you do a commentary on that white man shooting that 8 year old black boy in Texas. I wonder did that little boy have on a hoodie and sagging pants. I know you love white men because your boyfriend is white but is ok to go against them sometimes. He will still love you. I guess.

    • Marcell on said:

      Connie,

      Do you really hear how you sound. Once did you hear Mrs. Martin speak bad about anyone during her sons ordeal, you are just being evil. We as black people are our worst enemy. Would it have made a different if another black person made the comments Mr. Lemon made? Stop tearing down our people and show other people we can be with our own race on something for a change. To many people died for us to get so many places and we are still fighting ONE ANOTHER for stupid comments like yours.

  5. taylormi on said:

    Well said Don and Amen. We as a People must learn that We are Responsible for Our Decisions and when those decisions cost ‘children’ who by the way did not ‘Ask’ to be Here, harm or tragidly, their Death, People need to be held accountable. Amen Don. Peace.

  6. Anthony Viegbesie on said:

    I subscribe to Don Lemons position on taking responsibities for our actions and stop
    playing the “Blame Game”. Read Our Faults: Conversations on the State of Affairs in Modern Black America” by Dr. Anthony Viegbesie to see what he says about some of the issues afflicting Black America.

  7. This is one thing about Don, most of what he says hits home, can hurt but is the truth. People HATE it when others suggest or say straight up LOOK IN THE MIRROR!! People in general LOVE to blame others and ignore/justify their own actions/mistakes. Often times, its our own fault why we are in the shape we are in. NO ONE can make us do things we don’t want to do. NO ONE forces us to do things that are wrong or what we know we shouldn’t.

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