He’s fifteen and fifteen is hard.
You don’t know who you are yet, but you’re not wanting anybody else to define your identity…especially parents.
You look at everyone around you and you look at the culture to help you make your own choices.
Our conversation was around video games and what loosely passes for “music” these days.
He wanted to play a game that his friends all play online.
They really want him to play with him.
He wants to be accepted by his peers.
The game is nothing more than virtual murder practice.
“You only shoot bad guys…”
I felt defiled even hearing about it.
We said no…what you put in in your mind is what comes out.
Murder in, murder out.
The music is worse.
“Gangsta” rap is not some celebration of ethnic culture as much as a tool to totally destroy any culture, youth first.
I don’t give a damn who that offends…
You can’t put violence, disrespect, and misogyny, to music and expect a non violent, respectful, response from those who ingest it audibly.
We said no, again.
In doing so we pretty much isolated a kid who already feels alone.
When I got home there came the news from not far away of a 16 year old boy who slaughtered his family.
He shot them.
He may as well be 100 because his life is now every bit as over as those he killed.
We will have more discussions about the guns and we should.
People will want to know if he was medicated with psychotropic drugs and that’s worth discussing.
What we won’t ask is who his favorite musical artists are or what his hobbies were.
We won’t even consider what impact the things we glorify as entertainment and cultural expression did to help bring him to this moment.
We won’t ask because the answer might indict all of us.
Maybe a lot of us have blood on our hands.
Maybe a lot of the things we celebrate are as deadly as assault rifles.
Maybe we really celebrate violence as a culture.
Maybe we need to ask different questions…