LOYALTY & THE HOOD

“kapoom”! That’s the sound, very loud and brief, but that’s how long it takes for a man to hit the ground. I’m going to be extremely subjective as I scribble down this piece. It’s very painful when we lose people very dear to us, but it’s worse when the circumstances behind it all are completely gruesome. Few days ago I decided to go all detective and make detailed research before writing this piece and I hope it pays off; illustrations are always ideal as it strengthens the emphasis and makes the whole point vivid.

If you take a walk down crown heights in Brooklyn one thing you’re certain to notice is the “hood”. When a group of individuals come together for common interest, they call themselves brothers and it will be silly to deny the strong presence of loyalty. I remember growing up as a child and how good I felt each time my uncle stepped in to fight my ”wars” for me. The same applies to every one of us, we must have been in those situations, where we had to run to an older brother or sister to bail us out from the snare of the class bully or street thug, that’s the most elementary phase of loyalty. We begin to make friends, not the kids we had swings with or built sand castles with, these are the friends that go a long way in defining who we become. Definitely, life’s reality subtly filters most of them away and the ones that remain go ahead to form a very close bond with us. Friendship is beautiful, it’s amazing when a friend gets so close and becomes a brother or sister, the loyalty is unique but it becomes a major issue when we “go the extra mile”, loyalty should be flexible and once the society or our friends stiffen it, then it should be questioned. A kid pulls the trigger of a .44 magnum because he was told that a nigga should fight for his own, he thinks his actions are justified after all they let him share their joint and hang out with the “cool gang”, so he is going to send another kid to his early grave.

The sister at the dark alley, with her skimpy gown and cheap makeup, she had always been alone and somehow she survived even when she had basically nothing and now she has “sisters” and they have opened her eyes to see that the money can flow in so long as she knows how to keep her thighs spread apart. We see these things happen on a daily bases, it was diagnosed and giving the name “peer-pressure”, but true comprehension is most vivid after personal experience. Shrinks believe they can understand, perhaps they can in bits, very little bits.

Adnan P was a teenager, very vibrant and sociable, discovering the seemingly intriguing parts of youth and then one day he was kidnapped by his friends who asked for a very huge ransom. He was murdered when news of his kidnap broke out on national TV (source-Wikipedia). You can try to picture how sad his parents must have felt, tears definitely flowed freely but tears can’t wake the dead. Several other instances like this and you don’t have to be a detective or psychic to see that the key factor is friendship and this brings me back to the hood. It is particularly wrong when a group of friends or so called brothers decide a man’s fate! And it’s usually one sided, very brutal and cruel. Is “kangaroo justice” our only option? Yes, you have made some brothers proud, probably going to have extra bottles for your devilish courage and a lady for the night but you have made a wife cry, left a child fatherless, you have imprinted agony in the lives of so many. Would be very wrong if we don’t recognise the strong presence of loyalty, but the same loyalty made you take the first shot at hard drugs and now you can’t stop, the very same loyalty thought you that hustling only becomes a crime when the cops have your hands cuffed up! It’s very easy to understand the plights and challenges people have growing up, probably having to grow up as an only child or in a family that lacked love and now you have friends that are now brothers or sisters but we have a mind of our own, to discern our actions. We end up hurting people with dreams and a family. Nobody is a mannequin, don’t be the reason why a man has to suffer.

Redemption is what we need, it is the only escape route. Also the right lifestyle will always attract the right people to us. I know life is a battlefield and there’s always a war to fight but they should be fought on the right grounds within the confines of the law, with morality steeped at its highest threshold. God bless you brother, God bless you sister.

KAPOOM!……. Isn’t what we want to hear

KAPOOM…….. leaves so much pain for us to bear

KAPOOM! …….Remember Gods judgment is near

please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments box

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