On the Culture of Taking a Life

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I’ve been preoccupied with this story….


At the time that I’m posting this… it’s the most recent and updated story about the killings and the captures.

My heart breaks every time I think about Michael and Nia. Even though I did not know them personally… I know people who knew them. I know people who were at the engagement party the night that they were murdered. I feel their pain. And I feel the NATURAL HUMAN EMPATHY. How can you think of the story and not??? 25 and 27. Just starting out their lives. Deciding they wanted to spend that life together. Meet with all their closest friends to celebrate that event. Just to be offed by some MINDLESS FUCKING KIDS.

*taking a deep breath*

That same human empathy leads me to think of those kids. I finally saw their pictures today. Something about looking in the face of a criminal accused of doing something heinous… I need to see if there is any connection between their countenance and their thought process. I’m usually let down. I looked into the faces of these kids… because… they’re kids. 19 years old. When I was 19… I was just getting settled into year 2 of college. Deciding my major. Actively pursuing pleding AKA. Beginning a brand new love relationship that looked promising. THE FURTHEST THING from my mind? Was stealing / killing / carjacking. But then I had parents at home who had migrated here away from their homeland… just to TRY to give me a better chance. And I had to do something with that. Even if it was only up to a point (and that point was my Bachelor’s… after that, I told Mom & Dad that I would do my own thing). I had to do something positive with that…. make that… MEAN something to them… if not me.

So I thought about the support system for those kids. When Darmelia’s mom gave birth to her… when she named her and looked into her face… did she wish greatness upon her? “I hold in my arms the next great Speaker of the House…” or “I’ve just given birth to a future President of the Unites States.” Hell… was her mom even AROUND??? Or was she too busy chasing behind her youth that Darmelia and her brother might have robbed of her to actually RAISE her? I’d have to say no as her brother Ronald “Diddy” Lawrence was also in the family business of taking lives as he did for 2 people in February in Jersey City. I did a search for Latonia Bellamy on Facebook… just to see. But my co-worker told me something about how as soon as your arrested it seems that they take down all your social networking pages. Doubtful? Because I can’t see the government working that fast to do ANYTHING sometimes. A Latonia Bellamy did come up. But it wasn’t one of the assailants. It was a woman my age… who’s Wall was replete with status messages of upliftment and encouragement for the next person. Under her description where folks would normally put their little life’s mission statement, she proudly exclaims that she is all about “helping people in the community facing hardships with Rent, Security, furniture, Food, Clothing, Employment, Resume, Etc.” Maybe the 19-year old Latonia’s alternate reality doppelganger… Who she could have been if steered in the right direction. Maybe? But no. And then there was Shiquan. The boy in the crew. Shares the same last name as Latonia… but they’re both 19… so unless their twins… or Irish twins… maybe different families. They don’t seem to live in the same place according to the reports so I have to imagine they got to know each other the few days they were in school together because they sat one behind the other. I told my coworker that if you put a suit on the boy, gave him a fresh cut and imagined him in an auditorium full of young, eager minds talking about the future and higher education…. IT’S NOT THAT FAR from the imagination. It’s not even far to imagine him having made SOME mistakes in life… maybe having a misdemeanor but wanting to do right… maybe a baby to take care of… and interning somewhere to get his foot in the door to make a better future. Look at his face. Can’t you see that too???

But, no. They’re all just criminals. MURDERERSTHIEVES. The LOWEST of the low.

There HAS to be something said for environment in this. About their upbringing and discipline. The institution of structure where there no longer exists a standard one in society. Parenting isn’t something you can do for a few years and then hope it rides out into the child’s future. My parents were PARENTING ME up until their very last. I was still getting invaluable advice AND structure. (aside… I really? had amazing parents… i am truly blessed and i miss them terribly). It’s also not something that you can slack on for x amount of years and then miraculously show up when the kid is 17 and expect for it to take effect. I’m assuming the worst about their environment. It was the environment of the unreal. Where taking a life is just as significant as it is on the tv shows they watch. It’s easy… look… just pull the trigger. *cut scene* And that stuff they own? They’re too good for that stuff… so take it too. *roll the credits* And if we get caught… “SO. WHAT.” Jail is jail is jail. They’ve likely been in a cell in their minds all their lives. So this is a manifestation of their thoughts. And they’re ready for them.

Look at their picture again. Don’t you SEE the lack of connection between what they’ve done and how they feel?

That’s not Human.

My deepest sympathies go out to the families of Michael Muchioki and Nia Haqq. I have no words to offer that would ever comfort and as far as I am from the situation, I’m hurting deeply.

I hope these people are brought to justice. I hope that maybe one day… perhaps the light of TRUE realization will go off in their minds about what they’ve done… Because it’s probably as surreal to them as it is to the families that have to reconcile the light of bright stars in their lives being mindlessly dimmed.



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