Happy Tuesday #Jontourage,
Welcome back to the “Classy Gent Chronicles”, where staying classy is the only way to be. In this week’s edition, read how an Instagram message broke my heart into several pieces.
So a few months ago, I shared about me being on the cover of a local newspaper.... my student commented on my Instagram saying "wanna know the best part bout this...you're still alive".
The next day, I asked him what he meant by that. He shared that where he is from, the only time you see a young black man on the cover of a newspaper is when he is wanted by the police or when he's been killed. My heart broke for him not because that's his perception, but because that's been his experience. Some of my students always tell me they can't believe I'm in my 20's because many of the people they know in their 20's still run the streets. That's the sad reality of our society.
Growing up in the suburbs of Fort Washington, MD, I realized how blessed I was. Although all communities have problems including mine, we were not plagued with the constant news of youth deaths. I have been blessed to say that none of the friends have been killed. Although death is a part of life, is it never a good thing when you do not make it see your 30th birthday due to violence.
That conversation will always stick with me. It's my inspiration to keep grinding out here. I want them to see positive black men out here who are be honored while living, not only in death. Here are three tips better in our communities:
I pray for the healing of our young people. They have been exposed to way too much way too soon. Some of our children have seen more trauma by 18 than many of us have seen in a lifetime.
Moral of the story: We have got some work to do y'all.
Remember, in order to live out your dreams, you have to think it, feel it, live it! Until next time, stay classy...
For more Classy Gent Chronicles blog post, be sure to visit https://www.authorjon.com/blog
Jonathan C. Harris is no stranger to leadership, hard work, or success. At the age of ten years old, he earned the right to be a guest weatherman for a day on Fox 5 DC News. He has already received over 100 honors and awards including Forty Under 40 for Prince George’s County, MD, TEDx Talk speaker, American College Personnel Association (ACPA) Outstanding Men’s Program, high school Valedictorian and the Kiwanis Club Citizenship Award. Raised in Fort Washington, Maryland, he has served in leadership positions his entire life, from being the manager of the school store in elementary school to the president of the Homelessness Awareness Club in middle school to the president of the National Honor Society in high school.