A break from sports; a personal story
A rising salesperson in the tech community, with a penchant for never giving up on a sale, or anything else for that matter, he spent a great deal of his time during the next few weeks fighting the fine in small claims court. The judge eventually cleared him, and he didn’t have to pay up. That said, the policemen never apologized.
I have another friend who was arrested due to mistaken identity. He happened to fit the description of someone who had committed theft. Therefore, he was roughed up by the cops, detained, and had to spend his hard-earned money and lawyer up. After a night in jail, he was cleared. He is still shaken up by the violence of the thoughtless arrest.
This man is a former All-American NCAA athlete, a consultant and engineer at major companies including the vaunted Microsoft, and more importantly, he actively donates his spare time to younger people as a coach, teacher, and advisor.
An old friend of mine, who I have known for over 20 years, is a rising producer in the world of mass-media. He has worked with musicians that include Iggy Azalea, Dom Kennedy, and has constructed commercials and campaigns for companies that include Puma, Skullcandy, and Funny or Die.
We were hanging out one day, a couple years back, and he told me he owned a gun. I point blank asked him, with some concern, why he owned a gun. Very calmly, he stated, “I am a black man living in L.A.” He went on to explain that he didn’t enjoy owning a firearm, but that he needed to protect himself and his loved ones.
I treasure the relationships I have with the three men above. They have guided me, as best they can, professionally and interpersonally. They have been fucked with by law enforcement.
They have been scarred.
It’s time we listen to the stories of our young leaders. And it’s about time we listen to each other, give each other the benefit of the doubt, and show a little respect.