in fact I insist on it
by Chris Stevenson
In view of recent events involving NFL tight end Aaron Hernandez of the New England Patriots, I feel that some black and Hispanic pro-athletes not only need to stay away from people places and things, but make an honest effort to act like you are too good to associate with your old homies from the block, or old street gang you used to run with. I mean to purposely steer clear of this type of element and the behaviors associated with such people.
Hernandez is only 23, and just like that he threw his life away, doing a very dumb thing; pretend to be a “gangster.”
Drafted out of the then-national champion Florida Gators by New England, and playing double-tight end on some plays along with Buffalo’s own Rob Gronkowski, he was just signed to a contract extension paying him a $12.5 million bonus a year or two ago. He could have gone higher in the draft, but he tested positive for marijuana. This is part of the problem of a young man with amazing talent, and bad decision-making that would cost him millions over the years.
They say the turning point for Aaron was losing his dad when he was 16. After that he was said to lash out at authority while concurrently setting records as a high school player out of Bristol, Ct. As bad as this sounds, allowing him or others who know him to use this behavior as an excuse takes credit and hard work away from other boys who lost their parents and kept their heads on straight. The children and teens who stayed out of trouble after losing an immediate family member are the ones who really keep it real.
Aaron is the one thing that today’s youth culture refuses to admit; stupid. We are supposed to say ‘he’s baaaad.’ No, Hernandez is soft. Here’s a record of his soft behavior:
In 2007 he punched a bartender over a bill after 2 drinks.
In 2012 he is suspected of the double-murder of Daniel Jorge Correia de Abreu and Sanfiro Teixeira Furtado of Dorchester.
In 2013 he shot a “friend” Alexander Bradley while the two were riding in a car on 6/13.
On 6/18 of 2013, of course the case that finally busted him, the murder of Odin Lloyd a minor league pro football player.
These charges are nothing to play with, nothing to brag about or take pride in. Hernandez is essentially a boy assuming the role of single-mama’s boy even though he had a dad until he was 16. With apologies to the mentally ill, that’s retarded. Hernandez joins the tragically growing legion of fucking-stupid athletes. In his case the highly unnecessary tragedy is compounded by his loss of $19 million over the next 3 years. He was said to be a member of the Latin Kings and then Bristol Bloods. What street gang could pay Aaron that much? I’m waiting for answers.
Hernandez is part Hispanic and part Irish. If he was trying to prove he had a dark mysterious side, then it wasn’t worth it, I’m not impressed. Minority ballers seem to be more susceptible to foolish behavior just due to the regular pressure of your peers. Due to their instant celebrity status granted to them since Pop Warner and/or high school, if they go wrong they benefit from pretty-much the same immunity as most bad cops in a big city police union.
I bet much of his behavior is due to the false consciousness instilled in him by pop-culture. Today’s entertainment industry has African American and Hispanic males from 14-to-34 behind schedule in maturity and has been since around 1990. A false conscious can cost a real life, black and Hispanic boys have been trained by another faction of false gangsters-hard-core rappers-into underachieving behavior even if they posses vast potential.
In the immediate term Hernandez will be a jail celebrity, this influence unjustifiably has vast powers of suggestion. But in time it will wear off, and he’ll be forced to both defend his life and reflect on the life he could of had if only he kept his mouth shut and his ears open There is too many jealous weight-lifting and scheming prisoners for that to not happen. That’s when the question will really hit him while licking his wounds in a 9×10 cell, was his playing pretend gangster really worth it? How can his answer be anything other than no?
Most single mama’s boys that are locked up or dead, never really understood what being a gangster really is. If they understood how much work it takes, they would stop using the word. Gangsters built communities and large and small businesses from out of the street corners of the world’s earliest ghettos. Most of these were inhabited by Jews and Italians. The killing that was publicized and today glorified was just a byproduct of being a gangster, not the primary activity.
On the other hand street gangs like the ones Hernandez associated with and continues to try and prove he comes from are just that, a gang, a group of “niggahs.” Nothing more. After 30 or so years of selling crack, heroin, marijuana etc., their gangs are still on the street corner boasting territory still owned by whites, and attitudes inherited from their single mothers. Not sure if Hernandez fell victim to the wrong influence, or if he was the wrong influence. He’s done.
Chris Stevenson is a regular columnist for blackcommentator, Political Affairs Magazine, and a syndicated columnist. Follow him on Twitter, and Facebook, you don’t have to join any of them. Watch his video commentary Policy & Prejudice and The Network for clbTV & Follow his Blogtalkradio interviews on 36OOseconds. Respond to him on the link below.