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The Way I See It
Conflict Resolution- by Jack Crawford
"I'm really sick and tired of being sick and tired"
... So said an NAACP leader regarding the media's propensity to
report negative stories about African people. But why do we kill
one another? In a recent tragedy, a young 17- year-old brother
stopped a bullet while shielding two young sisters. They were
victims of being in the wrong place at the wrong time because
most of these young hoodlums that "carry " really have
no idea what to do with a gun or how or when to use it. Some fool
started shooting because someone spilled beer on his shoes. He
had no better way of showing his displeasure? He was angry so
he pulls a gun. Now, as Minister Farrakhan says, "He feels
invincible... because he has a gun and the power to decide who
lives or dies..." Get a life young brother!!
We need to offer crash courses in conflict resolution as a part
of the ordinary curriculum in or before the sixth grade. There
must be intermediate steps between an argument or other minor
disagreement and killing. Our kids have been exposed to so much
violence that this seems to be the preferred way of handling conflict
because it earns respect. NONSENSE. It ain't respect to take someone's
life over a stain on a pair of sneakers. It's stupid. Our values
somehow have been lost among certain of our young.
We need to learn how to apologize. We must learn how to say "I'm
sorry" and mean it without feeling that we have lost face.
We must stop showing hero characters that never take any stuff
from anyone because these images are becoming the father figures
to young men who are not being properly guided by their own fathers.
Conflict resolution. If you offend someone, apologize. Abide by
the simple principle: "Do unto others..." It really
ain't complex. In my mind, any person too small to apologize,
when he or she has offended another, is weak.
This manifests itself in our male-female relationships. Take note
of how our people seem to have a strong need to dawg each other
on TV shows like Love Connection. We probably dismiss the
behavior as no class. But if you apply it to our people generally
you see why we can't get along. Do the males and females have
to compete at such a negative level? Why can't we appear to support
each other at least in public. If these folks can be that rude
in public, what happens behind closed doors? Everyone wants to
be macho, the best of the lot (usually at the expense of others).
If we could concentrate on making ourselves better people and
assisting each other at every opportunity, we could all prosper.
It has everything to do with love. Love of self, love of family
and love of our people. This is not only the right thing to do,
it's the intelligent thing to do. As long as African people allow
this world full of white supremacy cause us to hate us, we will
always be at the bottom of the pile. We'll just keep bringing
each other down.