No doubt it is true that, sometimes, authorities act irresponsibly or even criminally in the process of performing their duties. I have, however, nothing but respect for the vast majority of our first responders and believe in their trustworthiness and sincerity to protect us all. The dangers they face and the complexities of their work are not something most of us ever have to deal with or understand. But there are bad apples and ineffective personnel in any group. The police are not immune.
I would like to address this issue from another direction. Let’s forget, for a moment, who is directly responsible for the death of a young black male. Let’s think about the circumstances and environment that exists around them when they die. A father of one of these men who was tragically killed said his son was the face of all young black men who have the “same black skin, same poverty, same social and economic injustice that is put upon them, but with different names and different ages." In a way, this father was saying it isn’t their fault because they are doomed to this fate more than others. I agree! But why?
There is another commonality with these young men. They, almost exclusively, come from homes without fathers that are effectively involved in their lives. More of these young men, who get caught up in questionable and often very dangerous behavior, are black because black fathers are absent at a rate hardly comprehensible. Most live in poverty for the same reason. The injustice they face, when and if it happens, is never justified. But neither are the circumstances in which they were raised.
I do know, however, real crime and real injustices would be minimized if young black men had the advantages a real home with two responsible parents. These young men cause great harm to our society, not just by what they do illegally, but by bringing into the world more children who will not have a proper upbringing and will, therefore, have a high probability of being further involved in inappropriate activities.
The situations that troubled and troubling young men find themselves in are preventable. They are preventable by themselves, but that will not happen without good parenting and mentorship. With mentoring and caring, they will have proper values, they will be less likely to be angry with the world, and they will have loved ones they will want to protect, impress, and to be proud of them. Of course, it's not just the African-American community, the focus of so many recent controversies, where tragedies occur. It's any society that has family and fatherhood issues.
From The Power of Dadhood: Become the Father Your Child Needs:
“In any society you will find:
- Child abuse
- Education issues
- Emotional and behavioral problems
- Inappropriate sexual activity involving minors
But in a society where few fathers are engaged with their children, these issues explode.”
Therefore, have all the drug programs you want. Build as many jails as you can. Help the poor by giving them what they don’t have. Help single mothers in every aspect of bringing up children as possible. Send troubled kids to high priced counselors for free if you can. Do all of these things and give praise to those who do them, as I give them praise.
But you will never truly fix these problems at their core until families are fixed; until most fathers want to be dads and mothers want them there to help co-parent. Not until we have families that are healthy will we raise men and women who will know how to have healthy families themselves. “Defeated mothers and absent fathers create future defeated mothers and absent fathers.” Thankfully, the opposite is also true!
We desperately need to incentivize and encourage families to stay together rather have policies that tend to incentivize and make it easier for them to stay apart. If you look at cities and neighborhoods where single parent families prevail and then compare them to two parent family neighborhoods, you will see that the neighborhoods with very high crime always fall within, or come from, the single parent neighborhoods.
The more we focus on keeping families together, the less we will have to deal with almost any other social issue! Saving money, time, and lives!!