Heartless, Children Without Conscience
On July 9, 2017, Jamel Dunn, a 31-year-old, disabled African American man drowned in a retention pond in Cocoa, Florida. As he struggled and screamed for help, a group of 5 African American teens witnessed his fate.
They offered neither aid nor assistance. They sought no help and did not call 911. Instead they ridiculed and mocked Jamal. http://www.floridatoday.com/story/news/crime/2017/07/20/teens-filmed-mocked-drowning-man-cocoa-police-say/495518001/.
We’re not gonna help you ***. Shouldn’t have gotten in. Drowning. What the heck. Ha,” one teen can be heard saying. “Get out of the water, you gonna die”, shouted another. Yet another screeched. “ain’t nobody fixing to help you, you dumb (expletive).” Finally, one teen declared, “he dead”, as Jamel sank beneath the water’s surface for the final time. See http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/20/us/florida-teens-drowning-man/index.htmle.
During the five days between the drowning and the discovery of Mr. Dunn’s remains, not one of the teens came forward. And even after their callous indifference to the pleas of a drowning man was discovered, they displayed little or no remorse.
We have certainly known our share of inhumanity. Reflect upon the March to the Sea, the Middle Passage, naked slave auctions, the horrors of bondage, “the noose”, police brutality and beyond.
But this level of cruelty, this degree of depravity, this scale of degeneracy, rivals those who torched our homes, raped our women and stretched our necks on poles and trees. Not even the KKK were so cruel and/or stupid as to record their wrongs.
To be sure, not all African-American youth are so heartless. Many if not most would have reacted differently. Neither is malevolence exclusive to a particular ethnicity.
Yet, we can take no comfort that this example of moral turpitude is the exception. We can no longer believe that this type of intra-racial cruelty is isolated.
Rather, similar examples of blacks hating blacks are all too common. Consider the war zone that is Chicago or any other major city. And we must resist the urge to excuse by explanation rather than resolve by action.
Diane, a good friend and socially conscious individual argues that the reason for this pitiless disregard for life is that too many black children are born to and raised by addicted parents. She reasons that parental drug consumption affects the brain development of in vitro children to the point where they are incapable of moral compassion.
Diane’s theory is not without merit. We contend however that children without conscious is more of a cultural disorder; a dearth of positive values and conduct of which drugs are a material but non-exclusive factor.
So while we can point to slavery, poverty, racism, narcotics, inadequate schools, broken families, fractured communities, or the media for our self-loathing, we can fault no one but ourselves. The Jamel Dunn matter is not an illustration of what others are doing to us. It is instead a demonstration of what we are doing to ourselves.
The white man did not make these young black men fail to render aid to and mock a drowning black man. Drugs alone did not cause their disaffection.
There is something fundamentally wrong with a culture that produces children without conscience. And it is our responsibility to fix it; whatever the cause, notwithstanding the cost.