Blood once again stains the floors of one of our nation's schools. As reporters started picking up on the tragedy last night, the focus once again became blurred and twisted. Those interviewed shortly after the shooting didn't seem too concerned about the victims. There was little or no discussion of how to help the survivors cope with what had just taken place. There was little or no discussion of how did we get to this point. There was little or no discussion about finding a way to help our young people avoid getting to this place. The true problem got lost as many of the interviews turned into the "Black Card Shuffle."
Unfortunately, when a tragedy occurs, the first order of business is to start pointing fingers. Unfortunately, the victims and survivors quickly take a back seat as people fight for camera time to grind an axe of some sort. Unfortunately, the true problem is often ignored and these events are sometimes used as an opportunity to turn a tragedy into a black/white thing. The news media was not innocent in this process last night as they ushered some people down the racism path. I heard several of those interviewed condemn the system for not having metal detectors in the schools that were in predominately black neighborhoods. I heard a comment or two that basically said the reason this took place was because the government doesn't care about the poor black kids. I heard a parent interviewed that said she demanded metal detectors in her kid's school.
As I listened to the interviews about the Cleveland shootings, I saw as wedges were being driven between people. I was saddened that no one talked about the root of the problem of anger and violence in our youth. As this way to familiar story unfolded, I had a vision of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton packing their suitcases to hurry to the scene to get in front of the camera. They could once again make this about minorities instead of about anger and violence. I also prayed for the reincarnation of the unifying powers of Gandhi and King. I wished for an interview with the spirit of Mother Teresa who while still with us said, "Do not wait for the leaders; do it alone, person to person."
When you get right down to it, in this country, we are all minorities. I am a Hungarian/Austrian American Building Contractor. I think I am one of the few of those in America. I have no lobbyists or radical spokesperson. Alone I have little voice and little power to change the world but I can still make a difference. However, united as a community and a country, we can accomplish anything including correcting this challenge of stress, anger and violence in our young people. So as we approach the bottom line, we must face the problem and step up to make a difference. We can not blame every tragedy on the government or race relations.
A friend's grandmother shared some wisdom from a source unknown to me. She said, "A child is born with a pure mind and a heart of gold. It is up to us to help keep it that way". There in lies the answer. We must be proactively involved in the lives of our youth or we will continually have to retroactively deal with the tragedies of our youth.