I'm raising sons - you're raising daughters.
You're raising felons - me, future fathers.
For the life of me, I can't seem to grasp why so many mothers spoil their sons.
Why would any woman desire that another boy became an effete man who is more concerned with looking good (sic) than doing good?
I'm often told that I am too hard on young boys.
That I need to understand them.
That I expect too much from a generation which has grown up without any real leaders.
That I'm too old-school.
But this rigidity may be what's lacking for many.
One has to learn how to be responsible.
One has to learn that they are part of a larger world - and not the center of the Universe.
Every child imagines himself great - but only a few are able to achieve material greatness.
But every man can be great in his service to others, regardless of their financial status.
I didn't move to Beaumont, Texas to help anyone other than myself.
My plan was to probate my grandparents' will, cash out and then go back to Cali. for a life of wine, women and fun.
But something happened along the way - I had to sort through five versions of different wills and ended up being stuck in this town for longer than I expected.
If I was to be stuck here, I thought that I could at least help a few people before returning home.
I thought I could make the best of an undesirable situation.
At first I thought I could help my tenants and those from the surrounding community.
But I was overwhelmed by the prevailing culture of "Good Enough" or "Good for a Black Person".
The culture that expects little from those who have accepted for themselves society's definition of being the least.
My focus then turned to only my tenants, then only to certain tenants, and finally to families which were already trying to help themselves.
This is where I am today - mentoring (primarily) three families who were on the cusp of being middle-class.
From this middle-class starting point most families can better determine the course of their future actions.
From this point, most families can shift their values from that of survival to that of acquiring assets which will help their families in future generations.
From this point, many families can learn the value of helping others get what they need to enable them to also make better decisions in their lives.
In rethinking the question of whether 'God hates poor people', I came to the conclusion that this disaster is the most merciful type.
If the poorer regions of the world are effected by disasters - the richer nations can step in to offer assistance.
This wouldn't be the case if the rich countries were in need.
Who would assist them?
Most poor countries would just cheer as though the rich had gotten their just reward for stealing the wealth of the poor.
But then everyone would be poor.
All this to say what?
Today my young bad ass little cousins and their equally bad friends made sure to text their donations to the Red Cross or Yele funds.
Today, these bad ass little boys gathered food from my neighbors for Haitians to be sent through their churches to the disaster area.
Today these bad ass little boys understood the responsibility that goes along with having more than someone else.
Today these bad ass little boys didn't wait for me to tell them to do what's right - today these boys saw a need and responded accordingly.
Today these bad ass little boys took another step towards becoming men.