Our family usually does not watch the news, so we rarely know what drama is going on in the world, however, the news of what’s going on in Baltimore has permeated every corner of America via the news and social media. My interest being peaked-I searched various news media and was in awe of the images I saw as it relates to the displays of anger and frustration.
Most of the footage revealed images of young men causing destroying private and public property. Lining the streets and behaving in ways that are less than exemplary. What was equally as alarming was the military presence that had been summoned to bring order and protection to the citizens of the community.
While I cannot begin to comprehend the feelings of hopelessness expressed by the residents of Baltimore. I can relate to being someone who feels as if they have no voice or what they have to say does not matter. Growing up I was always told that children should be seen and not heard. Sadly, I adopted that same philosophy with my children until I found and read (remember-no judgment) my daughter’s journal. I realized then that she had a lot to say and I was not listening. She chose to take out her frustration by writing.
How many other kids have been raised under that same model, who have not been taught how to channel their anger or frustration into something positive or healthy? I guess a better question would be; where are the parents and mentors who would teach those lessons? I watched with mixed emotions the video that went viral; you know the one where the mom sees her son rioting and publicly discipline’s him.
Obviously, she is a parent that cares, but often we need more than our parents. I know in my case, I have to prompt my friends to share the lessons I want my girls to learn because often they will receive certain pieces of information from a trusted adult more readily that they will from me. “It takes a village” has always been my motto when it comes to raising children.
Seeing the unfolding of events in Baltimore has only strengthened my resolve to continue to provide mentoring opportunities and positive youth development programs to give the youth of the community an avenue to express their feeling, to provide tools and resources to express themselves in a positive and respectful manner. I would encourage you to partner with us at We Care Now to do the same.