July 23, 2014
Why Do Young Boys Grow Up To Be Dangerous Men Part IV. Stopping the violence, destruction and self sabotage in our community is a tall order. Some of you may not agree with me, but you probably don’t come to the East Cleveland Municipal Court or any of the other municipal courts across the counties in Ohio. From my perspective, everyday has caused me to realize that people are still committing crimes, still destroying our community and still living well below their potential.
Why do young boys grow up to be dangerous men? Through these articles we have talked about the problem in general, we have talked about a lack of personal responsibility and we have discussed the responsibility of family and friends to make sure young people grow into greatness instead of dangerousness.
Another reason that our youth grow up and become dangerous is a factor I call “The problem of connectivity!”
Bad connections Our youth are connected to the wrong people, places and things. I had a detailed conversation with a juvenile corrections officer who disclosed to me that many of the young people who enter prison, and then join gangs, are longing for connections and protection. It’s this longing that makes these same youth commit crimes that lead to jail. When our youth are lead to or pushed to bad associations, a decision to commit crimes is often based on their relationship and influence of their friends.
SOLUTION: For parents, a solution is to stay involved in your children's lives. Talk to them, travel with them, and listen to them. I am telling you, there is more to being a parent than just sitting back and letting your child be. You have to get actively involved. Don’t just surrender your primary influence over to their friends. In order for parents to accomplish this and ensure that your children have good connections, is to disconnect from your own activities. It may sound harsh but believe me it’s worth it.
Lack of connection
The second part of connection problems is the lack of real tangible connections. The first real connection is to a higher power and purpose. Once we teach our youth to connect with the greatness that is inside of them, once they realize that their birth is a miracle and accordingly they are full of positive potential our youth will stop their insanity and destructive activities.
The next connection needed is a connection to the community. For some reason our community is no longer united. It could be the challenging economy, it could be the flight to the suburbs, it could be a result of the crack years. Despite the cause, the fact is that our youth are not connected to the community. How do I know this? If the youth were connected to the community littering wouldn’t happen because there would be pride in the community’s appearance. Burglary and robberies wouldn’t occur because there would be a connection to our neighbors. Even the negative music, loud talking and lack of respect would disappear because there would be pride in the community and respect for our elders. There is a disconnection from the community and a disconnection from positivity. When the parents and the community fail to provide proper the connections and outlets for our youth, they commit crimes. The solution is to teach respect to our youth and display respect through our actions as adults.
For more discussion on this subject or others, join Judge Dawson’s Cycle Breaker/Finish First program on Monday nights at 5:30pm at the East Cleveland Municipal Court. East Cleveland Municipal Court’s Judge William L. Dawson is on a mission to help people to Finish First, live their best lives and be Cycle Breakers!