By: Chelsea Davis-Bibb, M.Ed.
“One day we must come to see that peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek. but that it is a means by which we arrive at that goal. We must pursue peaceful ends through peaceful means.”
– Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
It broke my heart to hear about the Lamar High School student who was shot to death outside of his school. It has been said that his death was gang related. According to the United States Department of Justice, “most participants in gang crimes tend to be young, male and either Black or Hispanic.” Why is this?
In addition, according to the National Gang Center, there was a yearly decline of gangs from 1996 until 2003. After that, the number of gangs increased significantly, and as of 2012, it was estimated to be 30,700 gangs. There is so much going on in the world, and the sad part is, we don’t hear about everything that is happening.
There are many things that go unsaid or even unreported. Our youth are faced with so much on a day-to-day basis, and keeping them safe should be a priority. So why do many young people join gangs?
When speaking with a deputy investigator, it was expressed that they join gangs for three reasons: being a product of their environment, joining for protection and for some, it’s due to issues with low self-esteem. When kids are a product of their environment, it means that the cycle is just repeating itself.
These kids have been around the violence and statistically are more likely to join gang activity because of their surroundings. This is not the case for all kids, but for many. Further, joining a gang for protection is something kids may do in order to feel safe from the world. A gang may be a comfort for them; the closest thing to a family, some may ever know or experience.
Last but not least, being a part of a gang may boost their self-esteem because it gives them something to feel good about because they belong. Whatever the reason may be, many of our youth are losing their life due to gang affiliation, and it is important that we make sure they are safe.
There are some ways to make sure that our youth are staying out of trouble. The first thing is to keep them active. Kids should be involved in sports or even some type of club or organization. They can even participate in a hobby they enjoy, which keeps them occupied. Keeping them active can help them stay out of trouble.
The second thing that can help is to constantly supporting them. Many times, kids get in trouble because they don’t have any support to help guide them and encourage them along the way. As an educator, I have seen the difference between kids who comes from a home with support and kids who have no one in their corner.
The difference is significant in how the student behaves, performs in school and even how they view themselves. Lastly, we have to be honest with our kids and expose them to the realities of the world. As much as we would like to shelter our children from the evil doings of the world, we can’t. We have to inform them of such things like gangs, and the consequences thereof.
The deputy investigator I spoke with sees a lot on a daily basis. One of the things he mentioned was that kids should be informed of what they put on social media, and should be careful about what they view as far as celebrities, etc. Everything they see on television, social media, or what they may hear in music may not all be true. The deputy investigator did give some advice to the youth which is to “stay as far away from gangs and cliques…stay to yourself, and learn that life is really about struggling, making career decisions, overcoming adversity and putting yourself in the position to be successful.”
October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit www.edwardsforhouston.com
As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.
Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.