Trayvon Martin’s murder case is a touchy subject between all races within America right now for many reasons. Here you have a kid who was murdered because he was Black while his murderer is still pending punishment. In the June 2012 issue of Essence Magazine, there is an article titled “The Danger Outside.” This article discusses the Trayvon Martin’s murder case and goes on to give Black parents a tid bit of information they should share with their kids. The information presented may be some decent advice for saving the next Black kid from being brutally murdered by the next law enforcement official; however it is lacking way too much information.

Good advice from the article

  • If you must pull over, do so in very visible public
  • Know your rights and don’t give police too much information
  • If you’re being discriminated against get the badge number, right down everything and report it

I consider the above bullet points as good advice because children must know they have rights from the moment they are born and they should act accordingly. When you act like a victim, you are bound to be treated like one, which is why I’ve labeled the following bullet points, not so good advice.

Not so good advice from the article

  • Don’t wear your pants too low
  • Show that you’re an upstanding man
  • Show your hands if you’re confronted by a cop
  • If there is something in your hand, drop it
  • Don’t argue because you’re going to lose

The problem with the not so good advice is that it is lacking confidence and it sounds “guilty”. While I am not an advocate of sagging pants, I don’t believe that sagging pants determines “good people”. There are more crooks in suits than in jeans. Telling, our children to show their hands and to not argue is telling them that they are already guilty and must prove themselves not guilty from the time some random law official asks them their name and until they’re set free.

While discussing racial profiling is extremely important, our next step is showing what we’re going to do about it. If we’re not showing our children how to eradicate this or at the least promoting the eradication, we are expressing to them that you are already a victim because you’re Black and that’s just not true.

Remember when Harriet Tubman said she freed a thousand slaves and could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves. Well this is the same concept. We’re teaching our children that they were born powerless and will die powerless and there is nothing they can do about it.

My suggestion is to tell every kid you know about racial profiling as well as the right and wrong way to deal with it. After that, tell them it’s wrong and the steps they must take to change it and how they can join you in that change. Equip yourself with knowledge, then equip your kids with the same. Know Thyself.

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