Dr Joyce Willard Teal

Addressing Recent Tragedy (7/11/16)

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Thursday night of this past week was one of the worst nights in the history of the city of Dallas.  This comes on the heels of two days where we witnessed the killing of two Black men at the hands of their local authorities.  I won’t even try to pretend to know or understand how anyone else feels right now.  In fact, I’m not even sure how I feel myself.  What I do know is that, to borrow from Thomas Paine and Langston Hughes, respectively, “these are the times that try men’s souls” and that life for us has been no crystal stair.  Yet, we must find that strength that lies deep within us to push forward, even in the midst of seemingly unbearable pain.

It would be a big mistake for us to attempt to move forward without acknowledging the pain, loss, and sorrow that we have witnessed and suffered during the latter part of last week. Therefore, as we acknowledge our pain, loss and sorrow, let us embrace the fact that more violence is not the answer; that violence begats more violence.

Parents: while it is necessary to have “THE TALK” with your children, your sons especially, be careful that you do not do so in anger. Control your emotions and instruct them gently and clearly. Answer their questions to the best of your ability. Comfort them. Lessen their fears.

Know that we will get through this and we can emerge stronger, more determined to work cooperatively, and more committed to our fight against ignorance and poverty.  But for this moment in time, let us work on healing and remembering those whom we have lost.

Picture of Joyce W. Teal

Joyce W. Teal

Dr. Teal began writing professionally in 1995 and has had several award-winning poems published. Her first book, It’s O.K. To Be Different, was written for boys and girls between the ages of nine and fifteen, but has universal appeal, has since been published in a New Millennium Edition. It is currently being read by children as well as adults.