Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Is Lovelle Mixon our Real Life Bigger Thomas?

Bigger Thomas was a character in Native Son written by Richard Wright. The book sits on my shelf and I read it about every few years or so, and I am not really sure why I do that. Bigger was messed up, mean spirited, and just a screw away from stupid. I am not sure if Wright’s intention was for the reader to ever have some type of sympathy for Bigger but I never could. It started with his name I guess. What kind of name is Bigger? Anyway, Bigger found himself in a messed up situation and made it so much worst that there was no way out for him.

This Lovelle Mixon reminds me of Bigger Thomas. He got into a shoot out with cops and killed four of them in the process before getting killed himself. The people who loved him and some of the people in that neighborhood are trying to make it seem as though it was not his fault. Personally, I think it was his entire fault. I am not one of those that believe the system and environment that he grew up him led him on this path to violence, incarceration, murder and ultimately death. We make choices every single day, every single moment, and every single second of our lives. Those choices have consequences whether good or bad. He kept on making the wrong choices. Like Bigger Thomas kept on making the wrong darn choice till he got to a point where it did not matter what he chose the end result would be death.

Let’s just say though for the sake of argument that the murder of four police officers was not Lovelle Mixon’s fault. I am thinking then it was his parents’ fault. Where were they before he got to the point of dropping out of high school? Okay, well maybe they were not educated and grew up in the hood and did not know better. In that case, I’m fresh out of ideas. It is hard for me to blame “the man” when my mother immigrated here from another country without knowing the language, the culture, or the climate (moved from Caribbean to New York) to become a homeowner and put four kids through collage. I’m speculating that “the man” tried to stop her on many occasions but she wasn’t having it.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I know from working with my past clients how difficult it is to get a job with a record, but many have done it and many have risen above there past actions. For a persons life to come down to a shoot out, there have been quite a few missteps along the way. Ultimately, there is something called personal responsibility.

Oakland shooter unable to escape cycle of violence
San Francisco Chronicle
By JULIANA BARBASSA, AP Writer Lovelle Mixon died at 26, hiding in an apartment, shot by police during a gun fight that left four officers dead and stunned a city already plagued by violence.

Killer of 4 officers wanted to avoid prison
San Francisco Chronicle
(03-22) 21:12 PDT Oakland -- A fourth Oakland police officer was pronounced dead Sunday in the wake of a shooting rampage by a 26-year-old parolee who, according to family members, knew he was a wanted man and did not want to go back to prison. ...
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