“Incubation: to keep under conditions favorable for development.”
There is a glorification of destructive behavior and habits formed around bad monetary management. These decisions are plaguing our culture. This abomination is encouraged through the material we read, entertainment (music), role models (athletes, artists, male presence), and the belief we are conditioned to place our belief into the media.
The acknowledgment of our achievements is obscure. I don’t see articles on our youth who maintain an A grade average, but you can pick up the paper and see how many points a high school student scored in sports. I don’t see community volunteers being recognized for mentoring the youth in the supposed most-troubled areas in the community, but I am informed every time a young man is arrested for a crime.
Attention seems to only be found in the realm of negativity. This allows an opinion to be formed on the character of the individuals on whom this focus is directed. This invites a reputation to be formed.
The passage of manhood should not be associated with prison. It needs to be associated with family and social responsibility and making a contribution to community development.
Manhood shouldn’t be associated with how many guns you have or girls you have sex with. It should be associated with how many social and academic accolades you have acquired, and how many women you have assisted in overcoming the challenges they incur. Reputations should not be admired based on aggressive and violent behavior, but they should be based on intelligence and sound decision making.
We have to go to war with the trend of insolence, destructive habits, and inferior thinking. We must glorify productivity in the form of entrepreneurship, building business models, and community development. Thug life and prison is counter-productive to our progression.
Nevertheless, in order for this to become a reality, we must replace the old with something new. I have found myself being disturbed by the trend of underachieving. Youth have a higher interest in how to spend money opposed to how they can generate it. In fact, earning money legitimately is frowned upon. Unless obtaining money has some illegal involvement, it is of no interest to most.
Crime is the alternative to jobs. Money is spent effortlessly on unneeded material possessions that do not have the potential to generate income. The same funds could be invested in a business with the potential to generate enough income to purchase the things that money is squandered away on irresponsibly.
Making wise decisions with money, along with managing money, needs to be ingrained into our culture, especially our youth and our educational system.
A.J. Briscoe lives in Minneapolis.