An E for Effort and I for Idealism to Prof. James T. Branch
RE: The church must rise up to stem the violence
By Eddie Griffin
Monday, November 08, 2010
If we lived in an ideal world, ideal solutions would work perfectly, as Prof. James Branch advocates in his article “The church must rise up to stem the violence”. Considering the church was the first victim of violence, the course of peace has always been the charted path of the Christian. But everybody does not handle violence, or the threat of violence, in the same manner.
Mr. Branch is presumptuous to even suggest setting a pastor’s agenda over his flock. Intervention into youth culture may not be a part of their gospel. His desire for his daughters to grow up and marry “good men” is idealistic and personal. Being in the good-daughter raising business puts him also in the “good men” raising business. Good sons (sons-in-law) are groomed out of a flock of good sheep, and the father is the shepherd.
When men were men, they trained up good young men. If a man wants a good son-in-law, train him up during courtship, lest he get out of control later on.
Branch also writes: “… some adults are intimidated by or have given up on too many of our young boys. We must continue to help them understand that sagging, a fashion originating in the penal system is not needed on the outside.”
Here, I get the image of a young man with sagging pants, exposing his underwear, and clutching his crouch, as if he is proud of something. This overly rebellious image intimidates some people. They avoid the potential for hostility and keep their mouths closed. Bullying follows in the making, not far behind the rebellious trait.
NIP IT IN THE BUD
Whenever I approach a young man with sagging pants, he either voluntarily pulls them up or he gets a word of encouragement from me to pull ‘em up. If not, I have an alternative that has worked more than once.
In one example, there was a young man at an event wearing sagging pants, and one of the elder women asked me: “What’s with the sagging pants?”
I eased into a seat next to the young man and whispered: “Jack ‘em up, or I’ll drag them down to your knees. Don’t mess with me, boy! I’ll snatch the pants right from under you, grab me a hand full of nuts, and squeeze and pull till you holler mama. I’ll make a eunuch out of you, boy; or a paraplegic for life.”
Other people may feel intimidated, but sagging pants is a tactical disadvantage to a street gladiator. This is why I always give this warning to young men coming under my purview, wearing sagging pants, including my own nephews.
Bullies assume that nobody will snatch their pants down, snatch their feet from under them, and grab their testicles. Nevertheless, this is the tactical advantage that I would give to my children and grandchildren, if they must defend themselves against bullying.
Not that I am a violent man or advocate violence or blow-for-blow retaliation, but iron sharps iron. Good strong men build good strong young men, not by verbiages, but by trials of fire. I am a true believer in : Make him or break him, because “As the twig is bent, so the tree inclines”.