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Vaughn T Aiken

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Member Since: Apr, 2005

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· My Soul is not for Sale!

· My Letter to the President of the United States

· The Measure of a Father

· Obama 08

· Succes

· One

· My Soul is not for Sale!

· The Common Man

         More poetry...
· Obama 08

· Order My Soul is not for Sale!

· Reflections

· Award Winnning Author and Writer

· The Last Straw

· Brooklyn Poet Sings Out

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The Challenge Before Us

8/14/2005 3:01:00 PM

by Vaughn T Aiken

An Op-Ed piece written by Vaughn T. Aiken
The Challenge Before Us

By Vaughn T. Aiken

Three murders, three different parts of the city, three good men… All fathers, all hard working, but who cares? The media coverage was virtually non-existent. However, if these African-Americans robbed or murdered someone instead of being murdered themselves, it would have had greater media impact. Am I missing something? Is it me, or do the media cover the ills of black America more than its accomplishments? Weren’t we taught that all life is valuable? Yet, I didn’t hear the mayor comment, and it was not on the news. Yes, it did make some papers, but there were only small articles compared to when African-American males are pictured in handcuffs. These scenes get greater media coverage. Marvin Gaye said it best, “What’s going on?” No one seems to care that we are dying out there.

These African-Americans were three fathers with three different dreams, representing three different walks of life. All have one thing in common; they were all murdered violently by guns. Now their children have no fathers, and mothers are forced to explain to their children why daddy will not be coming home.

Only a couple of years ago our president justified the invasion of Iraq because he claimed that weapons of mass destruction were an imminent threat to America’s safety and well being. Whether he lied or was mislead, guns today have become our society’s weapons of mass destruction in our communities. In addition, it did not help people of color that Congress let the assault weapons ban expire, thus releasing AK-47’s, Uzis’ and Tec-9’s on our city streets. Most people read the paper and shake their heads when the read about someone getting murdered. I personally get angry, and quite frankly take it personal because it could happen to me. How does a killer look? How does a victim look? Murder could happen to anyone at anytime. There are no prerequisites. Wait, I know, you say, wrong place wrong time. Just don’t go there. I looked on the map and have yet to find “that place” on the map. So, as a father myself, how do I know how to avoid “that place” if I don’t know where it is?

These murders occurred in three different parts of the city. One man was murdered in Brooklyn, another in Manhattan, and the third one in the Bronx. Victims of wrong place wrong time? I think not. So what do we do about this common problem that has been plaguing us for the longest time? Society blames TV, video games, rap music, etc. When are we going to start to blame ourselves?

Personally, I have been trained to kill, but I have not killed a single person. Why? Am I different from the next person? As far as I’m concerned, it started in my home. I, like many African-Americans was raised by a single mom. She provided me a secure home life and provided me with the opportunity to learn martial arts beginning at the age of five. This experience provided me with the discipline I needed to know right from wrong and gave me a deeper knowledge of self, and a desire to achieve beyond my wildest dreams. As a result, I wasn’t influenced by the street culture, and I was inspired to strive for higher goals for myself. I graduated from high school and later went on to graduate from college which prepared me for a successful career.

As a result, violence is the last thing that enters my mind when things start to escalate. Why go to school to get an education if we don’t use our minds? Any fool can pull a trigger, but it takes a mind to talk things out to solve a problem or to find common ground. We all have problems. When I am frustrated I don’t go and kill the first person I see. I meditate, I focus.

Therefore, in a real sense, this county of ours has a direct responsibility for murdering African-Americans because they break the rules they set. Rules are set, only to be broken without remorse. Our government went before the UN to go to war, they were denied, and still they invaded Iraq. America states that it wants peace and justice for all, yet it does so in the most violent ways. Huh? Isn’t society just following this example? Why talk when you can just blow the next man away and take over his property? Why should anyone else follow the rules, when our country doesn’t? America justifies violence, why not us?

The bottom line is that someone is getting rich off of the murder of African-American society. We must take notice of what is happening around us and not take the attitude that it won’t happen to us? We must not wait until a family member or loved gets murdered to do something. We must teach values and self respect to our children and show love in our homes. We must teach and show our kids that there is more to this world than warped street values. Still, for African-American youth, it is still easier to get a gun on the street than to get a college education! What are we prepared to do about it?

More News by Vaughn T Aiken

· Obama 08 - 9/2/2008 10:31:00 AM
· Order My Soul is not for Sale! - 12/15/2007 11:36:00 PM
· Reflections - 10/28/2007 3:59:00 PM
· Award Winnning Author and Writer - 5/31/2006 2:03:00 PM
· The Last Straw - 9/4/2005 10:06:00 AM
· Brooklyn Poet Sings Out - 4/3/2005 8:57:00 AM

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