Plaudits to Bill Maxwell for telling it as it needs to be told. The St. Petersburg Times columnist zeroed in on the most pertinent question that needed to be asked in the immediate aftermath of the car crash that killed three black juveniles in St. Petersburg. What were two 14 year olds and a 15 year old doing out at 5 a.m. Monday morning?
Of course it’s a rhetorical question; they were stealing cars. Moreover, all three had criminal records.
Maxwell assigned blame where it belonged. In the home and in a black community that is too tolerant of dysfunctional behaviors and too easily intimidated by teenagers with attitudes.
“I am angry that we black people continue to defend the indefensible,” said Maxwell. “At least two of the parents of the children are questioning police procedure.” Reports, as Maxwell pointed out, indicate police followed proper chase procedures, and their actions didn’t have anything to do with the fatal crash.
One other thing that surely makes Maxwell even angrier. Not enough people in the black community are as angry as he is.
One more thing. The driver was a ninth grader at Northeast High School. Yesterday, his classmates spent time drawing memorials.
Better they had spent the time drawing conclusions. Such as: Nothing good can happen to a 14 year old at 5 a.m. And nothing good can come of an attitude that says I want what’s yours. In fact, it’s a deadly combination.