by Stanley Kinard
Schools Out – Beware of a Long, Hot Summer
With the exception of taking Regents exams, this school year is technically over. Students have taken all of their state and citywide exams and are looking forward to summer. I am concerned that the summer they are looking at may be a “long, hot summer.” On a positive note many students have done very well this school year and are moving up to the next level. Many teachers have completed a successful year working without a contract and under rather stressful conditions.
The Boys & Girls track team was cited as the top team in America for their placement in the Penn Relays. They have in the past won citywide and statewide championships and continue to excel under the legendary coach, James Jackson. The new principal of Boys & Girls, Mr. Spencer Holder, made a smooth transition in taking over for the irreplaceable Dr. Frank Mickens. I have spent much of my column on education in critiquing a failed system and attacking the policies of both the mayor and the chancellor.
In many ways I am concerned about what will happen to our youth over the next two months. With the breakdown of the culture and the values obtained from TV and radio, many of our youth have adopted a demeanor which invites trouble. Insanity has prevailed in our community over the last month. A police officer shot and killed his tenant in a dispute over the rent. A week later, an 18 -year- old young man was shot and killed by a white male in Brownsville. He was shot in the back. Yet the next day, the Daily News reported that he was a troubled youth having been previously arrested 10 times. This is not true. To date, the Daily News has not retracted the story or printed the truth. The Aiken family is devastated. The horrible incident regarding the 9-year-old girl stabbing her 11-year-old best friend over a rubber ball. Brownsville was recently turned into a police state when a police officer was shot. The alledged shooter fled the scene and later openly took his own life.
My reason for calling this a “long, hot summer” is because people are feeling a lot of rage and the economy has nothing to offer our youth. Mass media, controlled by the Murdocks and Viacom, are doing nothing to prepare us for this reality. As a community, we are not prepared for this long, hot summer which is why spiritual alignment is in order. We must protect our youth and encourage them to use cool heads in resolving conflicts. As the late James Davis said “Let’s stop the violence and let’s love ourselves.” We must also make the distinction between revolution and a “thug solution.” We will never overthrow oppression and transform our community through thuggery. The only people we really hurt are ourselves. It’s time to turn off the TV, the warcraft video games and get back to the revolution. Let’s take control of our schools and transform the whole society. Let’s protect our community and stop killing each other, and certainly let’s stop allowing others to kill us.