Let me start with the Oscars, because Sunday is Oscar Night here in A-merry-ca. And, sadly, to many of you A-merry-cans, this is bigger than the State Of The Union Address.
One of documentaries that was nominated for an award is called Undefeated. It chronicles the successful football season of a poor inner city high school in Memphis, Tennessee, and how they overcame problems on and off the field. "So field, what's so movie worthy about that?" Funny you should ask. The coach of the troubled football team in the film is white, and, like The Blind Side before it, an all too familiar theme emerges.
I have nothing against Bill Courtney, the latest white saviour to catch Hollywood's fancy. God bless him for volunteering his time to help those young men in Memphis. He deserves credit for it. But ABC's Person Of The Week? ESPN? Hollywood? Oscar? Countless talk shows? And...well, I think you get the picture. Like that wealthy white woman before him played by Sandra Bullock, Mr. Courtney is the white saviour of the hour. A-merry-ca loves these types of feel good stories; all the better when poor inner cities kids are lifted out of their condition by that one wealthy white person.
You will never see such a story about William Ellerbee, or Ted Ginn, Sr, or Todd Walker, because it would never sell. Black men are supposed to look out for their own children. I guess when there is a white savior it's like one of those man bites dog kind of deals.
I wish Mr. Courtney good luck on Oscar Night. I bet the makers of Undefeated walk away with the statute. Mr. Courtney might bring some of those boys from the team with him, and the camera will pan to them as he hugs his wife, the filmmakers, and whoever is in reach of his arms. The music will just keep playing, and there won't be a dry eye in the house.
Finally, it's time to get on some of you young Negroes.
This is always hard, because the people that I want to talk to do not read this blog. I know because I meet them from time to time in my professional life.
I don't know who is going to get to these killers living among us, but somebody better do something and fast. (h/t Greg Fuller)We know that they are not getting proper training at home. We can't blame the schools because most of them are not in school. We can't blame the church, because Pastor Jones can't go and drag Jerome out of bed on Sunday morning. And we can't blame city and state officials because it's not their job to police your damn kids.
We could blame the various negative influences in the neighborhoods for creating these little monsters, but where did these negative influences come from in the first place? Television? Movies? Rap Videos? I suppose we can say all of the above. But we all watch television and movies, and we don't go around splitting people's wigs in the middle of the day with automatic weapons. That is just some depraved s&^t that sociopaths do.
Thing is, when you meet some of these monsters they are nothing like you would expect. It's as if they reserve their anger and depravity for kids who are in similar situations as they are: Other kids in "the game" as they like to call it. They actually refer to people who aren't in "the game" as civilians. As if they are waging some kind of sick inner city war against each other that the rest of us will never understand. Unfortunately, the only time I get to really get their ear is when their war infringes on the rest of society and society takes action. Then it's my job to see if society acted properly and if justice is being served. It's enough to keep even the hardest field Negro up at night.
But I have some ideas, and hopefully someday the right people will listen to what I am saying. Right now poli-tricksters are too busy trying to get paid and maintaining the status quo to really care. (And no, I am not talking about white folks. I am talking about you Negroes who happen to be local poli-tricksters who care more about getting reelected than making the tough decisions that's best for your community.)
Oh yeah, those ideas:
- Start kicking out the bad seeds from our public schools at an earlier age, and make more alternative schools available for problem children.
We need more schools like Glen Mills with committed teachers and counselors who will step in your ass if you get out of line. We have to start identifying violent kids at an early age and get them off the street and into some type of environment where they can be counseled and monitored.
- Start fining parents who don't attend parent teacher's meetings, and whose kids are always late or absent from school.
- Give parents more choices (I know I sound like a wingnut, but this is one area where I part company with my progressive friends) where they can send their kids to school.
- Make some overall changes to the the child support process by making the guidelines a little more payor friendly. (This is a little inside baseball, but believe me, it's something that needs to be done.) For instance, give a downward deviation in the support guidelines for overnight stays between the non- custodial parent and their child. Right now in Pennsylvania you have to spend at least 40% of overnights throughout the year to get a downward deviation of your child support order. Maybe if we can give some of these sperm donors some more incentives they will spend more time with their children. Maybe.
- More sex education. More sex education. More sex education. You all need to stop having all these damn kids you can't take care of.
- Decriminalize some of these drugs to lower the street value. I could do an entire treatise on this one, but I just don't have time. Let's just say that drug dealers carry a lot of money, and they don't go to the police for protection.
- Make more athletic and extra- curricular activities available to these kids at a younger age. (See the first part of this post to see what can happen when kids become involved with athletics and other activities.)
- More sensible gun laws. No one is trying to take your gun away from you 2nd Amendment wingnuts, we just want to keep certain automatic weapons off the streets of some of our urban areas. I promise you, I have never seen a deer running around Center City, Philadelphia.