Editor’s note: The excerpts below come from a column Tim Wildmon wrote in September 2016.
September 2020 – Like most Americans, I am very concerned about what has happened between the black community and the police in our country. Sadly, I believe things will get worse before they get better (and we hope they get better).
… for black males ages 15-34, the leading cause of death is homicide. And the vast majority of those murders are a result of black-on-black crime. So young black males, who represent maybe three percent of the population, are in conflict and altercations with cops on a daily basis and with each other, which, as the statistics show, can be deadly
Maybe the police can do a better job of community outreach to the African American community so they can hopefully regain their trust and respect. That will take some time but is very much needed. I’ve heard many law enforcement leaders say as much in the wake of the recent protests and unrest.
But this got me to thinking about what could be done to change these statistics so that young black men can get off the evening news and on track as productive citizens with an opportunity at a fulfilling life. Here are five steps that, if put into practice by anyone, will give that person a really good chance at a life of hope, peace, and contentment.
1. Obey the law.
2. Earn at least a high school education.
3. Don’t be sexually promiscuous.
4. Don’t consume alcohol or take drugs.
5. Accept Christ and attend church.
The great news about the five items I’ve just listed is that they are simple to understand and can be followed by anyone regardless of skin color and socio-economic status. These are life choices that could make all the difference in the world on how your life goes.
Immediately following the July 7 assassination of five police officers in Dallas, the nation became familiar with police Chief David Brown, an African American. From the first time I heard this man speak at a press conference, I was impressed. At one press conference, he described the stress that many police officers endure daily. Police are asked to do too much in our society, he said. They sometimes have to make life and death decisions in a matter of seconds. He said society must do its part to impart moral values and a respect for law and order, which, to a large extent, has been lost in our country. He also said the result of 73% of black children being born to unmarried women is a problem police can’t solve.
America, as a whole, must get back to honoring marriage and family as the anchor institutions for a civilized society. This is how God has set things up. Children need a mother and a father in the home to give them the very best chance to succeed in life and to stay out of trouble with the law. This is undeniable.
The best thing we all can do for ourselves is to give our lives to Jesus Christ. He gives life meaning and purpose. He gives us hope for good things for today, tomorrow, and forever.
Like many people, I am concerned that we could see a race war in our country if things do not get better. God forbid. The Bible instructs Christians to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. If I can borrow from that, I think it’s time that American Christians pray for peace in our own country.