After being released from prison, twenty-five years ago, I began to speak to African American and Latino gangs across America. I saw the hatred among these young people, not only for those of the opposite color but also for many of their own. I began to hear their stories, and the one common denominator that most of them shared was being born in the wrong place to parents who were out of control, in jail, or addicted to drugs and no opportunity for an education. Their only form of schooling and ""parenting"" was provided by the gangs themselves. For many of these young men and women, positive role models were not there, but the gang became their security, their parent, their schoolteacher, and their pastor-like leader.
ALL THE PROTEST IN THE WORLD WILL NOT ACHIEVE ANYTHING UNTIL WE HAVE CRIMINAL and SOCIAL JUSTICE REFORM
I remember my father always telling me: son, in life, you will never make people who don't like you because of the color of your skin, like you. But, son, you make sure that you get an education, work as hard as you have to, and be a man of integrity. They might not like you, but they will have to respect you. He would stress, son an uneducated person is a controllable person. It would take many years before I could understand those words.