Thursday, March 13, 2008

Who's to Blame when Young Black Men Kill?

For nearly two weeks, the top story in my neck of the woods has been the brutal killing of a University of North Carolina senior named Eve Carson. By all accounts, this was a lovely young woman who was destined for great things.

Police have now apprehended two suspects in the case and, sadly, to no one's surprise, they were both African-American.

I used to be one of those people who said, “Never give up on a child because they all have potential.” I don’t say that anymore because there are young people out here who fear nothing and would harm you at the drop of a hat. There are young people out here who’ve never learned anything about respect, morals, values and what it means to be a law abiding citizen.

My daughter's boyfriend was gunned down the day after Christmas 2005 for taking up for his little sister who was being harassed by some boys on the city bus.

I’ll never forget that day. I was sitting in the newsroom waiting and hoping for something to happen because it was a slow news day and you can tell only so many “Shopping after Christmas” stories. Then I heard about the shooting at the mall on the police scanner. The first thing I thought was to call my daughter. She was at home safe. She said she knew her boyfriend was going to the mall so she was going to call him to see if he knew anything about it. I then called one of my girlfriends to tell her to stay away from the mall because there was a shooting out there. We were joking about the craziness of having a shooting at the mall. I then called some of my police contacts to see if I could get any inside information---before any of the other stations could find out anything. That’s when I learned that the young man who had been gunned down---shot in cold blood---MURDERED---was my daughter’s boyfriend, Quan. My daughter must’ve found out around the same time because when I called home I could hear her crying hysterically in the background. It was a surreal moment in time.

Do I blame this juvenile delinquent for killing an innocent young man on December 26, 2005? No---I blame his mother and grandmother and if you saw them on the day of the suspect’s first appearance in court, and the 'behavior" they displayed, you’d know why.

Some parents say there's nothing they can do with their children because they've gotten out of control. Try telling that to the loved ones of the victims who have been senselessly gunned down by that "out of control" behavior.

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