I rarely get involved in a lot of hot issues in the media. But I have listened to a lot of opinions, news, and read stories about the incident at Spring Valley High School in my great city where the SRO threw a 16 year old girl across the floor. Most have all said that the girl must bear some responsibility in this because she was defiant. As a former youth pastor and having worked with kids and teens in my former business for 23 years, I have discovered that the majority of defiant teens are dealing with some real issues and are acting out and crying out for help. Much of their emotional pain has been at the hands of some adult. I keep hearing that she was a student with discipline problems.
My questions is, “What is happening in her life that’s causing her to act out? ” A school filled with educated professionals, you mean no one has thought to ask this question? With all the stories being reported in the media, no one has thought to ask this questions? Did you all noticed that she took that beating from the officer without yelling or kicking? She reached for him only once when he went for her neck. Natural reflex..this tells me that someone has put their hands on her before.
Now folks are saying she needs to be punished. Really? Do you mean being thrown across the room by a grown man with a gun is not enough punishment? She needs more? People what is wrong with us? Have we become this kind of thinking?
There are folks who are saying that she should have respected authority. My question to you “Have you ever disobeyed authority?” Every time you run a red light, drive above the speed limit, pay a bill late, lie on your taxes, or here’s one, disobey God, you don’t respect authority. I don’t see God issuing out choke holds on your either. And many of you were stopped by the cops for speeding and he let you go with a warning. But this child must be punished, huh? Our children see us disobey authority in many small ways daily and then mimic us in their behaviors. So to the ones who are using the scriptures to hold this CHILLD responsible, I say to you, “Look in the mirror.” Because if you have NEVER disobeyed authority, including God, in your adult life, then you can walk on water I am sure.
Often times, our circumstances will not allow us to respond to situations accurately. Especially based on what’s happening around us. Many children are ill equipped. That’s where adults come in to teach what hasn’t been taught. But not using violence as a teacher. Too many of us think every child lives in a home that equips them with all they need. This simply is not true.
A friend of mine posted: “A child’s actions are responses to their circumstances and environment. When ill equipped, the responses will be inappropriate and deficient. Love, nurturing, direction, support, and Godly adult examples is what they need; NOT abuse….ever.” This is called mercy and grace.
I hold every adult in that room that did not try to handle this differently responsible. That’s a child. Perhaps the school, society and some other adults have failed her. I’m not talking about the other kids who are unruly. I’m talking about THIS child.
That’s a female who now is traumatized. She is the victim and we want to punish the victim. Women have seen this treatment and behavior for centuries. We’ve been raped, abused and then blamed for it. I don’t care if her race was black, white or blue she didn’t deserve what we have witnessed. A community that does not protect its children and its women, is not a civilized community. I’m so hurt, I’m sadden, I’m disappointed at all of us as a people. We had better have some radical changing of our hearts collectively or we are headed towards a destructive future as a human species.
I am also amazed at the women…the mothers, the nurturers who spur scriptures about disobedience and respect, yet they forget about LOVE. When will you remove yourself from that mental conditioning? You will NEVER incite civility by using fear. Only LOVE will do that and you can’t legislate love.
That being said, I will NOT make anymore posts about the Spring Valley incident in reference to what has happened. I am more interested in confronting and facing issues that have gotten us here and finding solutions so we don’t continue to remain here. As a community, we must have a collective conversation. Not a conversation just to let off steam and anger. Because an ANGRY generation can NEVER create PEACE. I am talking about a conversation that stirs below the surface of a collective consciousness and gathers momentum. I’m talking resolutions of conflicts and restoration of peace. In order to bring real peace, we need to call on the women, the mothers, the nurturers. Even the United Nations have recognized this truth. They established the UN Resolution 1325 referred to as Women Peace & Security Resolution that says, “If peace is to be negotiated, women must be at the table.”
I am calling on women to join me for: “Our Sons & Daughters: A Collective Conversation on Monday, November 2nd at 6PM at The Cecil A. Tillis Center, 2111 Simpkins Lane, Columbia, SC 29204.
I already had something planned for that day, but I have moved my calendar around because this is important. This is not about a business opportunity. This is our lives. Our community. Our children. Everything is not a business transaction to me. I am also calling for some men to join us. We need you. You are our protectors. Our kings.
I believe in grace. I believe in love. And sometimes compromise. In order for us to have this conversation it will require some compromise. Some may consider compromise as weakness. But how else do you make peace? How do we get to the real issues and find answers?
Anger and adrenaline can’t negotiate peace. Only Love will. I hope to see you on Monday.