Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Community and TMA Students Cope With Loss




Over TMA's Spring Break, there was a rash of violence in Southeast DC. Young males and females alike have lost their lives for reasons less significant than a five dollar debt. Numerous Thurgood Marshall students were directly affected by these losses. Many knew one or more of the recent victims personally, and if it affects our students it affects the entire TMA community. For those who may not be aware of these sad occurrences, here is a brief report:

The first event occurred the night of March 25, when two young men, both of whom are widely known in the area, lost their lives in a car crash. The community was shocked and saddened at the event and have grieved openly for the two beloved young men. Yet, on the Washington Post website, there were many comments that cast aspersions and made statements that were blatantly disrespectful, full of derision and held no regard for the friends and families of those young men. I was filled with anger at the sight of these ruthless posts. People are entitled to their own opinions but not at the expense of others. I do not advocate for comments that ignore the feelings of the family, friends and loved ones of victims.

Stories where young people have lost their lives are not hard to come by, sadly.

Just a few days after and only blocks away, there was another senseless death that was allegedly a response to a conflict over missing jewelry. The community is still at a loss for words as they saw four more young adults fall to the unreasonable violence of the D.C. streets. The shooting was classified as a"drive-by" in which the driver of the perpetrator's vehicle was only 14 years old. The mini-van, was occupied by three men, two of whom were adults. Two adults who allowed a 14 year old boy to drive a vehicle that was about to shoot into a crowd of teenagers in ruthless retaliation.

These stories are hard to digest, but these are the things that students at TMA and all over the DC area are forced to deal with on a daily basis. Dealing with a loss is never easy and most times unexpected but the least anyone can do for a person in that position is to offer a shoulder to help. Something to let them know that they do not have to deal with the hurt alone.

So this post is dedicated to anyone and everyone who wants to pay their respects to their fallen friends, family or loved ones. As well as for those who want to offer support in this time of need for many. A warrior's only trait is not strength but heart. And a true warrior's heart is just as big as her will. Post your thoughts, feelings or condolences. This post is dedicated to you.

16 comments:

  1. Something that caught my attention was that people commenting on the two people that lost their lives in the car accident, and them leaving negative comments. I do not understand how people can be disresepecful or iggnorant when two young people just lost their lives,them people were not in the car with them so they dont know the cause of it, people just thik because they were young they must have been up to know good. We are suppose to support one another as people and come together to stop violence in our communities.

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  2. I agree with Culley. How can you be so cruel to say such things. If it was them I can bet that they wouldn't want that that type of response.

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  3. I do also agree witht he both of you, it does seem that people mostly the younger generation like ourselves are really disrespectful and seem to not care now and days this really makes me sad to see how people are just doing ruthless things to one another of our oun kind and there really needs to be a change sooner rather than later.

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  4. I agree with you three, but if you view society as a whole you'll see a lot of broken homes, and a lot of dysfunctional families. Many child aren't taught by their parents the right thing to do. Those who aren't usually act out for attention that they did not receive in the home. And those who do receive attention usually act out because they believe its "cool". Is it really cool to own a gun or kill someone? We all know its not, but others don't and that is because the way they were brought up, or the path they chose as a person. Many youth know the "right" thing to do, but how many actually posess integrity?

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  5. I agree with everyone as well that was very disrespectful. I believe that the reason there is so much violence is not only because of broken homes or dysfunctional families but because there is lack of support. Society as a whole is to blame. Yes, they have small programs and centers but sometimes just having it there is not enough. Many people tend to follow others and what they see are not always good things. Whether it has been growing up or seeing it with in the community. So in order to help the youth we must help the young parents that have came from generations of recklessness. We have to tell people that it is OK to not be a product of your environment. Society has placed in many minds that it is cool to be a "thug" or "rep for your hood".. etc. Thus we can not just blame parents nor children but everyone is to blame. I believe in order to make the situation better there needs to be more role models. Someone no matter who to let people no they can come from nothing and be something. A role model is something that many people do not see, so even if it is a teacher I think they will help out and promote change with in our community . Also I believe that many people must want to help themselves and they usually do not do to lack of encouragement. I know as I am sure many of us do.

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  6. christine cauleyApril 7, 2010 at 8:37 PM

    I agree. I feel like our generation has totally different morals than past generations. I don't know if it's every one wanting to be "hard" or "gangsta" but its not right. It's true that it all starts in the home. It's up to parents,and guardians, to support and lead the youth, even though they may claim to be grown they are not and cant succeed on their own. also i believe teachers should try to support and lead the students because everyone needs a push by an adult.

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  7. I’m not familiar with the car accident so I can’t speak on that situation . I think that it is sad how four people lost their lives over a “bracelet” (we don’t know what the killing was TRULY over). In my opinion, the main reason why teens act the way they act is because of their surroundings including school, family, neighborhood and etc. I don’t think that a teen living in a dysfunctional family is always bad. I think that there are a lot of peer pressure in society that affects the way a teen acts. I don’t have a proper solution because a lot teens are not going to take advantage of opportunities that are put in place. Another thing is that we really don’t have any support from public officials including the mayor because they are just as arrogant and selfish as the teens and young adults that are killing people out here.

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  8. I didn't know anything about the car accident that happened before the shooting, but I agree with everyone's post. I believe that the parents of reckless children are the blame for all the crimes that have taken place in America. As well as society, but you cannot just blame the parents for their children wrong doings. Everyone is taught right from wrong but a lot of people chose not to make the right decisions. whether it's because they want to fit in or not, the chose is theirs. Homicides/ violence period affects our community, not only does it affect the people who knew the deceased, but others as well. Things like this have people afraid to leave their homes let alone stay out late at night.

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  9. I did not know about the car accident. When i first heard about this in my Sociology class, I was almost in tears. It is very heartbreaking to know that many lives are bieng lost due to senseless violence. The world needs to really be changed because people are dying at young ages and can't live thier lives the good way.

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  10. I was one of those people who were directly affected my the two young men in that died in the car accident. Southwest, the class they were from, was like a second home to me, and I never knew that the people I called my brothers, would actually died so soon, especially without me having the chance to say goodbye. The comments that were posted on the Washington Post website offended me because it was done out of hatred and no regards to the victims or their loved ones. I agree with Kyle because no one should be able to say the things that they did.

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  11. Is the car accident related to the shooting that killed the four people and injured five more (because I was also unaware)? However, whether or not it is related, Kyle is right: we do need to show each other respect and offer help since we are a community. A community doesn't function properly when people only look out for themselves. Several people died and were hurt, but the amount of those who were affected is ten-fold when you think about those who were close to the victims. This is a subject people should be sentive about and I feel that only when the problem of young adult violence is addressed and fought against with integrity (meaning people who "lead" acts that is supposed to be work towards peace actually mean and do what they preach) can we began working towards an effective solution.

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  12. This needs to end.Violence is the main reason why our loved ones are being killed of things that is not a big deal.I always thought it was just life but i see that this effected my fellow peers and its a tragic thing to the whole community...this needs to end...

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  13. MEELIK SMITH-BEYApril 8, 2010 at 3:44 PM

    Well I think the whole shooting of all those people over a bracelet is just dumb.Its sad people who had nothing to do with it lost their lives simply because they were at the wrong place at the wrong time.And I want to know what jerk[s] would go online and post negative things regarding the car accident victims at a time when people all over the area are mourning.People just being doing anything these days.When is it going to end?

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  14. The impact that this shooting has had on the community is really transcending from the community out into the nation. From coverage on CNN and national newspapers, this brings attention to the unfortunate situation those in the inner city are subjected to.

    (This editorial can also be found at www.teenocracy.net, a youth-led organization founded by me. Check that out too!)

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  15. Melody Holloway said.....

    The violence that happened during the break affected many people in our community. As a community we have to make sure that violence of this measure does not happen again...one step towards that goal is showing our love and concern to the grieving families for support.

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  16. Cin'Cerae LeaBoughApril 12, 2010 at 11:48 AM

    I believe that killing people is not the way out of the ghetto. Only if people went to a school that was similar to ours would they have had better sense of thinking. There is nothing to do in DC so they result in killing people over stupid stuff. Only if DC had more recreational activities, then we would not be doing the foolish stuff they expect us to do. I think that people should keep there kids in the house if you know they are going to act like the way they do. Most people who kill others are not in school or dropped out of high school so we should make it mandoratory for people to complete high school and kids need to go to college instead of worrying about what they might miss in the city.

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