Via: News One
Every time a soldier in Iraq or Afghanistan is killed, it makes headlines. Whenever a police officer or firefighter dies, we hear about it. If there’s an unfortunate shooting at a prestigious university or small town all-American school, society pauses and grapples with the notion of how this could have happened there, in middle America, far removed from the mires of urban life. But what about the countless young children whose lives are cut short daily in cities across this nation? Who hears their cries? Who listens to the plight of suffering mothers and fathers mourning the dead? And who will step in to curb the extreme rise in violence and utter disregard for human life that is so pervasive now in our community?
The world was recently fixated on a disturbing video clip which captured the brutal, senseless murder of 16-year-old Chicago honor roll student Derrion Albert. Apparently caught in between two rival student groups on his way home from Fenger High School, young Derrion was beaten with wooden planks, kicked, stomped upon and beaten some more till his lifeless body was dragged away. In what appeared to be an all-out ‘brawl’ outside of his school, the horrific incident was followed by more incomprehensible unrest at what was supposed to be a peaceful memorial for Derrion a few days later.
Watching this graphic video will make anyone shudder at the amount of young people involved, the extent of violence that erupted and the complete lack of respect for humanity on display. Because this horrific incident was in fact caught on tape, the media and those who normally turn a blind eye towards the downtrodden had no choice but to take note. But what we must keep in mind is that in addition to Derrion’s violent death, over 30 Chicago students lost their lives in 2008 alone, when some 290 shootings took place. And this epidemic isn’t unique to Chicago alone. The same week that the this brawl occurred, a 15-year-old in Arizona died after being stabbed repeatedly following an argument with another student. And all across the country, young children – specifically children of color and those in poorer disenfranchised neighborhoods – may have lost their lives, and we will likely never hear about these young souls because their incident wasn’t captured on tape.