November 27, 2007 Leave a comment Go to comments

Sean Taylor 

was my first thought. Unfortunately without a description of the suspect, I like probably too many of us will assume the worst. If he (or she~almost fell into another stereotype) is black,  maybe a positive side to this tragedy is there can be a chance for a final stand galvanized against the internal enemy combatant that terrorizes us. Or maybe the “stop snitching” gang will finally get their black card revoked, maybe one black boy will finally heed the messages of our ancestors and know that we can no longer tolerate the worst in us destroying the best in us. Or maybe truth will finally triumph over ignorance…

Will this ever come to an end? When is the cry from heaven going to flood down and wash our community of the wretchedness that has foresaken us all….

 Pray for Sean, pray for his family and may he rest in peace

  1. November 28, 2007 at 5:10 am


    Please send Leonard Shapiro a copy of “What Black Men Think” !!!

  2. November 28, 2007 at 5:23 am
  3. November 28, 2007 at 5:30 am

    A 24-year-old man, a professional athlete in his prime, is gunned down as his fiance cowers in fear and their young daughter sleeps — it’s hard to imagine a more tragic story. Period. I hope you agree that all who mourn Redskins safety Sean Taylor’s passing should resist the temptation to fit what little we really know about his life and death into some kind of familiar narrative about race and pathology.

    Asked about Taylor’s sudden and awful death, Coach Joe Gibbs said simply that life is fragile. Others have not been so modest, or so wise. They recount Taylor’s past “troubles” and try to make him emblematic of Young Black Men in general — the mean streets, the parasitic friends, the casual violence, the weapons, the beefs, etc., etc. This is argument, not explanation. It’s lazy and wrong, and it drives me up the wall.

    Do me a favor: If you have to impose an off-the-shelf narrative on Sean Taylor’s death, pick something other than the Young Black Men story. How about the Molded into Violence narrative — the story of how Taylor, like other professional football players (Pat Tillman, for example) was rewarded all his life for the ability to create sudden, explosive havoc on the football field, leaving opponents battered and broken; so why should anyone be surprised that he died a violent death? Or make it into a story about South Florida, where bizarre, brutal crime is almost an art form. Those are bogus narratives, too, but at least they provide a little variety.

    Better yet, don’t try to make Sean Taylor’s life and death into any kind of cautionary tale at all. He was a complicated man. He loved his family, he was a loyal friend, he didn’t like talking to the media, he hit as hard as anyone in the National Football League, he doted on his daughter. He had “turned his life around,” they say, as if navigating the shoals of career, fatherhood, love and maturity were a simple matter of taking a few GPS readings and heading, um, thataway.

    Here’s what we know — at this point, all we can possibly know: Life is fragile. And Sean Taylor was just 24.

    – Taken from Eugene Robinson’s online blog/forum, “Mr. Robinson’s Neighborhood,” on http://www.washingtonpost.com.

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