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When violence strikes Black moms walk a lonely road

caines | 5/16/2013, 5:30 a.m.

Theres a familiar adage that says the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. But when those same hands must also prepare for the burial of their children, we know that things are out of sync. After all, its children that are supposed to care for their aging parents and ultimately overseeing their funerals not the other way around. But in a growing number of cites across the U.S., including Miami, Black youth have taken up arms against other young adults, killing with reckless abandon and with little or no remorse. It is the mothers of these murdered youth who must somehow remain strong in the face of tragedy. It is the mothers of these murdered youth who must often pick up the pieces and care for their other children as the family mourns. Yes, the same hands that rocked the cradle must now see the lid of the coffin closed on a young man or woman who died way before their time. In our reflections on Mothers Day featured last week in our Faith and Family section, several mothers from Miami talked about their children whose lives were snuffed out due to senseless violence. One boy, 15, was shot by a 14-year-old robber while in his own home. Another young man, had recently graduated from high school and was anticipating the birth of his first child when he murdered in a drive-by shooting. Then there was a talented football player with dreams of stardom before him, that was shot and killed by an unknown assailant one day after practice. The stories of pain could go on and on. In fact, they do. But what strikes us as so amazing is the spirit of forgiveness that is so evident in each of the mothers lives. Some say they went to private counseling while others turned to their pastors or to members of their church. Some mothers have even gone on to become anti-violence advocates. But all of them have endured the cycles of grief. They have all cried until no more tears were left. Somehow, through it all, they have continued to survive.