Sunday, March 1, 2009

An Example Needs To Be Made

A young man was murdered in New Orleans on the Westbank after being followed from an argument at a bowling alley in Kenner, LA. For the people not familiar with this area, that's about a solid 30 minute ride to where this murder happened. That means whoever the shooter was had to maintain his anger to make that drive and still shoot three people. There is nothing we can come up with to change the mind of a man that would ride that long intent on doing what he did. Some of these cats are too far gone to save now. All we can do in my opinion is give him some long hard time and send a message that you can't shoot men that look like you anymore without proper punishment. Maybe when that word gets out it would make a few of these guys think twice knowing they might actually go to jail forever. That might sound cold but I know that there are some of these men who are emboldened by the fact they don't think they will get any real jail time. There was a period when I was about 14 years old where everyone in the neighborhood started stealing and shoplifting. It was fun because no one went to jail. Once the first knucklehead got a few years of time at least half of the rest stopped stealing. Once we get their attention the ones that want to do right and not sit in that cell will come to us. We have to make an example out of somebody. Besides, there are dozens of grieving mothers out here and they deserve the same closure everyone else gets.

Honestly, the thought of young black men going to prison depresses me because whether we like it or not we all share a common existence and when one of us fails we all fail in a way. It's hard to explain unless you live it. I take no pleasure in wanting them sent away but I am willing to deal with it because the knowledge of so many of us dying young is a worse thought and weighing us down more and more with every murder. It's like a run away train with no brakes.


Unknown said...

An example is being made, just of the wrong people.

Clifton said...

I'm not endorsing sending everyone to prison for anything. I just think that some of these guys have to be out of the way so the rest of the community feels comfortable enough to get things straight.