by Dr. Christopher Emdin, Columbia University
Yesterday, I wrote a piece critiquing the venom that CNN anchor Don Lemon spat at the Black community for its lack of responsibility in addressing the “thug” behavior spurred on by hip-hop culture. Since last night, I have had a change of heart. Perhaps Don Lemon is right. Perhaps we do need to address the real issues within our communities and target those who enact behaviors that are against the norm. These people are bringing us all down, and they represent the worst in all of us.
The other night, they walked the streets of Huntington Beach, California like an angry gang with their undergarments and lack of manners on display. A few of them yelled at the top of their lungs using a mix of expletives and slang that indicated a lack of concern for education. They kicked over private property and walked the street with unbridled aggression. They littered, seemed to be on drugs, and caused tens of thousands of dollars of damage in just a few hours. When the police showed up, they resisted. They even threw rocks, bottles, and bricks at police officers. One person was being investigated of assault with a deadly weapon after hitting a police officer.
Their parents have to take some responsibility. Society has to do something about this. They represent a culture that brings down society. They must be stopped!!! Seriously, we have to do something about these young white surfers.
To be clear, blaming these young white people for all that is wrong with America is just as problematic as blaming black youth from the hip-hop generation for the issues plaguing our communities. I just wanted to be sure that those who agree with Lemon see the folly in his message and his approach.