Let's Heal The Hood
Salutations my comrades who stay ten toes down; converse stuck to the turf.
I’m getting at you from the confines of a 6x9 cell in hopes of touching the minds and hearts of you in the confines of your hoods.
I spent 25 years active in gang violence, leadership, and expansion. This is not to glorify the crimes that I’ve committed against humanity. I say this to give you a brief background of myself so that you will know that the cat behind this pen is as real as penitentiary steel!
I didn’t slip into this gang culture on a banana peel, but like you, since I got in, I’ve spent my life with one foot in the grave and the other foot on a tight rope. I’m familiar with the neglect, and sometimes favoritism of our parents for our siblings that drive us into the streets, seeking the love, loyalty, respect, and even power that we don’t have in the home. I’m familiar with the reality of being broker than the Ten Commandments and having to grind for myself in order to get food, clothing, and shelter because my parents were either barely making ends meet or had an addiction of their own to feed. I’ve experienced the pain of homeboys dying in my arms and falling prey to an unjust judicial system based on the 13-1/2 theory where we face 12 jurors, 1 judge, and have only half a chance.
We know that from the baby bottle to the 40 ounce bottle, we’ve been geared for the prison yard or the graveyard and this reality has us clutchin’ glocks and huggin’ chops in our desire to live on the earth instead of resting in the earth!
WE KNOW THE DEMONSTRATION!
WE KNOW THE DEMONSTRATION!
So now the question becomes “Are we going to continue to fall victim to the emotional emptiness in our families, poverty, our misguided peers, or the inequalities of this justice system that houses just-us?”
These haters are envious of your youth and the potential that comes with that youth, which enables you to change your reality and consequently change the world.
Let’s first orchestrate peace between ourselves and begin to uplift the hoods that we swore to protect with our lives, because the hood needs to be protected. If our hoods are not protected by us - from our own violent behavior, we are in violation of our own codes.
LET’S HEAL THE HOOD!
Let’s not be the cause of any mothers’ or fathers’ tears because they’ve lost a child to gang violence! Let’s not be the cause of these unjust laws that are being put into effect to trap us for the rest of our lives in this hell that they call prison! Let’s not be the cause of our elders moving out of the hood and our hood being taken, remodeled, and re-populated (gentrification).
Let’s heal the hood and let’s use our set to do it!
Le’Taxione™ (aka YoYo)
N’STEP® Author and Gangologist.