I don’t believe that ghetto behavior is simply a matter of color, nor is it a matter of being raised in an unfavorable environment (neighborhood) in and of itself. Yet, it’s amazing to see how we operate, act and react based upon our world view. Television shows, movie roles, etc. generally perpetuate the stereotypes that we have come to hold as true. It’s certainly worth pondering. We can, many times, look to how, not where, we were raised to understand why our behavior is as it is. My father, for example, was a pretty strict disciplinarian. For that reason, you would not find us skipping school, disrespecting the teacher, talking in class, fighting, being the loud-mouths of the block or school, etc. This type of behavior simply was not tolerated. We understood that “wherever you act up is where you’ll ‘get it.'” In part, the lack of discipline in the home plays a significant role in the decline of our moral character. Left to ourselves, we tend to go astray. I thought about this (ghetto behavior) after a couple of recent incidents at work. I’ll share one. We recently had an ice cream social as a reward. I purchased two ‘tubs’ of ice cream (with ALL the trimmings). Since I only had one ice cream scooper, I purchased another one and decided to keep it and not charge the company. Of course, the ghetto mentality would say, ‘keep it AND charge the company.’ We had plenty of ice cream left so I left both ice cream scoopers and the next day employees were yet enjoying ice cream. I saw both scoopers before going home. The next day, however, my old scooper was in the drawer and the shiny, new one was missing. HA! Really? Really?? It’s a Sales Office! Certainly everyone there makes enough to afford an ice cream scooper–it was $5.14! I was too outdone! I may have “expected” this in Watts (purposely stereotyping) but I was in OC–snobby OC (again, purposely stereotyping). Who dared to bring the ghetto mentality to OC? Out of about 120 employees (2 companies) only 6 are African-American–all professional and 5 of 6 that know the Lord (1 I haven’t had an opportunity to know yet). The balance of the office is Caucasian, Chinese, Japanese, Samoan, Vietnamese, Filipino, Mexican-American or of Latin descent, and various other nationalities–a true melting pot (just to understand the variety represented). But really… who brought ‘the ghetto’ into OC? Someone that feels entitled, someone who wasn’t taught the difference between ‘mine’ and ‘theirs,’ someone with an impoverished mentality (“I’d never be able to buy one of these nice, shiny little gadgets”). Really? OK… I’ve spent too much energy on this already. But keep in mind… anyone can be ghetto–it’s not in the color, it’s in the upbringing. So… if you’re poppin’ out babies, please go sit down somewhere and take the time to raise them properly. I’m just sayin’… Thanks for visiting.
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