Our “Why” comes from our passion to meet a goal, our love for something that is dear to us, or a goal that we want to support or help.
Each morning I get my day stared with a healthy juice that I make myself. That’s right. I buy fruits and veggies and juice them right in my kitchen. The whole family enjoys a tasty and healthy treat.
Imagine the days where face-to-face conversations were prevalent. There was once a time where the beauty of outdoors fascinated young spirits. Hopscotch, Double Dutch, Pogo Sticks, Basketball Tournaments, Bicycle Riding, Skateboards, Marble Shooting in the dirt, Softball in the park, Swimming all day on hot sunny days, Football in the middle of the street, Foot Racing with no shoes, Catching Tadpoles in the nearby creek, Rock Throwing contests, and Tree Climbing just for the heck of it. Those were the days so serene and far from the prevalence of technology.
As an adult who yearns for a sense of normalcy, I often drift back down ‘Memory Lane’. As an educator, I fear for the horrors that await our youth of today. I remember learning from my elders how to conduct myself in public as a youngster. I had to talk and walk a certain way. My presentation to the world had to reflect my upbringing was the result of persistent parental involvement. I was taught not to embarrass the family name. Back then,I had far less distractions and temptations our youth of today have.
Let’s talk the topic of ‘Social Media’…a world we live in located right on the other side of Earth. In the minds of most of our youth, this location provides solace to all that isn’t right in their lives. They go out into this fantasy type arena looking for acceptance at all cost. In their looking, many find themselves sacrificing their morals, and often fall prey to elements awaiting their simple-minded ways. Social Media is a public forum with ‘privacy’ settings that are far from private.
Young people, listen very carefully. I’m going to give you a bit of advice in regards to your social media interactions:
1. Please understand once you hit your “send, post, comment, or tweet” buttons your business is everyone’s business on a worldwide scale;
2. You do not have ownership to these various outlets. Therefore, you are not entitled to explanations for your ‘privacy’ being ‘invaded’;
3. If you make posts boasting about illegal activities of sorts, please understand you are subjecting yourselves to the scrutiny of law enforcement;
4. Romance, dating, nor lovers’ quarrels should take place in such a public arena. Therefore, ensure your posted pics are those of high morals;
5. The ‘DELETE’ button doesn’t necessarily mean your ‘potty mouth’ posts have gone away. Just like in real life here on Earth, they await the ‘trash truck’ in cyberspace to retrieve them from the cyber-trash can.
Social Media is fun and an excellent networking tool if you utilize it for things that won’t formulate reasons for people to cast judgment upon you in a negative light. What you do and say via social media can have an everlasting impact on your young lives. Don’t be in such a hurry to be an adult. Inappropriate social media interactions can cost you an employment opportunity. They can in some cases get you suspended or expelled from school. Social Media can be addictive, causing you to lose focus of priorities that demand your attention. Fatal vehicular accidents are on the rise due to the temptation of driving and technologically socializing. Simply put, it can wait. Ask yourselves this question and answer it honestly: “Am I addicted to or distracted by social media?”
Young people, I challenge you all to step away from the world of Social Media to explore sparingly the joy of being a physically interactive kid who enjoys the face-to-face conversations with friends outdoors. Your young lives need balance and structure. Your reputation should matter to you, because it really does matter when it comes to how the world will perceive you.
If you were born into this social media wave and have absolutely no idea how to be a ‘do without technology’ type of kid, please refer to my journey I took down ‘Memory Lane’ at the beginning of this article. It’s still possible to be a kid with a sense of normalcy, even today. Don’t let the social media pandemic rob you of the beauty of childhood. I support your exploration. Life’s a breeze. Be easy.
Hovet Lee Dixon, Jr.
In regard to the verdict: Let’s take our emotions out of this for a moment and THINK. 1. This case was never supposed to go to trial. It was brought by pressure from us. Example: You want a trial? Yeah sure we’ll give you a trial. 2. As hopeful as we were, this case had little to no chance for Murder 2. There are only two versions of malice in this case and the one who has the other version is dead. The case, as many lawyers have written, should have been focused on how the murder could have been prevented and gone after manslaughter. Then we could have brought in the 911/311 operator (Where was he anyway), Zimmerman’s police history, and put his credibility under the microscope overall. That is everyone’s emotional and logical thoughts on what SHOULD have happened, but, again none of this was supposed to happen. Think of the medical examiner (Mr. I know nothing) and all of the holes in the prosecutions case. There was not a chance because in Murder 2 you have to prove intent and in this case you can’t with no witnesses and one dead party. The facts and evidence could not hold up to that standard. I believe that the State knew this, but chose to go with Murder 2?
But it wasn’t supposed to happen anyway. We were appeased, because we were angry. We got what we asked for, a trial, not justice. A trial.
Now we’re protesting and analyzing. I will ask you to THINK about our next moves. Civil case? Sure. Federal Civil Rights case? Why not…
And then what?
Several folks in my city went down and marched today for Trayvon then rushed home to watch Love & Hip Hop…
So now what?
Will we continue to walk blindly behind the mask that “It will be okay?”
Will we continue to provide nonsense Monday-Saturday & Verses on Sunday?
Will we continue to support the destruction of children through a lack of balance in what they consume as entertainment even if we see their personalities become it?
Or will we educate our children on THE FACT that THE WORLD IS SELFISH AND ONLY CARES ABOUT WHAT IT THINKS, NOT YOU.
Will we educate our children on the fact that the media will portray you as a criminal first, even in death. That the media will expose your past to kill your present and taint your future. That the media will do all of this to your life for ENTERTAINMENT. News shows included.
Will we inform our children that the game of life is to be played just like Madden 2014! Pull up your pants, Tie that #bowtie, and play these fools! Speak with diction and play these fools. No you’re not changing who you are. YOU’RE CHANGING HOW THEY THINK! And once you’re in the game, you will a. Apparently, save your life, and b. actually open the door so that ignorant people can begin to see you for who you are. (Is this not what we are looking for? to be seen as humans? To be respected as men and women?)
This was a case of PERCEPTION. Trayvon, 3.7 GPA having, Athletic, Family Loving, Martin was PERCEIVED to be a threat! Solely based on HOW HE LOOKED and murdered in cold blood because of it. This is an especially troubling fact in the black community because WE ACTUALLY PROMOTE AND ENABLE THESE ACTIONS AND BEHAVIORS through our representations socially and in music, television, and print.
No! I do not care how you dress or speak. But I do care that how you dress and speak can get you killed in cold blood with no penalty (in Florida and some other places). Think about it. We would not know who Martin Luther King was if he was not a media darling. He used that influence to gain the following of Americans nation-wide.
As we are all emotional and hurting on both sides of this issue, let’s take time and energy to think of how to curb this American problem in the most intelligent ways possible. Start in your circle of influence, your home, your children and educate them on what the world is. Then lets spread the message through our outreach efforts. Each of us has this responsibility…
But what will we do?