As I watched the horror going on in the streets of Baltimore, I pondered a significant fact surrounding an old African proverb: It takes a village. Of course, this was made popular in a political campaign years ago; but, it's true. I grew up in a time when anyone older than you by at least a decade was considered your elder. As such, if you were misbehaving on any level they could acknowledge that your parents would know about your actions. In my day that mattered. And for most youngsters that statement still puts them on notice to straighten up.
How ever, debate as you may, MUSIC MATTERS. I couldn't help but wonder what was on the mp3 player (pods, phones) of the youngsters creating havoc in the city streets. Gangsta' rap, maybe? Parents it's imperative that you stand your ground against things that will corrupt the minds and souls of your children. If they are not 18; you are legally responsible for keeping their heads as clear of smut as you can. Of course, there are peers who influence; but, I am convinced they value your opinions, and they're watching that your activities have a do as I do message.
Something else, EDUCATION MATTERS. As I watched the bedlam of teens looting stores and destroying city property, I contemplated how many of these youngsters were on grade-level, and pondering what college they were hoping to attend, or business they were hoping to start up. As my contemplation continued I pondered how many would have difficulty reading this children's book without stammering. This is in no way meant to insult; but, let's face it: The unrest in the public square represents a very small proportion of the young-adult population. I have faith that the majority of youth are high-achievers with goals for a better life, a better day.The unrest in Baltimore has at its root, the failure to bond with an inner-city group of youngsters who are hungry for guidance and hope that there is life beyond their city block.
Finally, FAITH MATTERS. Fifty years ago God was allowed to leave the schools of America; because of a case that won separation between church and state. I grew up in a time when you were aware of the Ten Commandments and were expected to respect them, and many other Bible principles, whether we knew they were of the Bible or not.
The melee going on in the streets of Baltimore is merely an example of what could potentially erupt in every major inner-city in the United States of America. There are answers; but, a grass-roots effort will be the only thing that sticks. Federal dollars will be lost in trickle-down economy. The people who make face-to-face contact with youth everyday in their commute to and from work are the ones who will make the difference via people-based community events. That's hard work. Who will step up for the children?