Chameleons: Christian or criminal

“Most Pasifika youth in gangs did not want to replace their family or home with the gang,” he said. “A lot talked about the ‘blood family’ compared to the ’street family’.” I think this would explain how easy it is for some of our youth to change hats, if you could call it that. While they may be involved in criminal behaviour, their connection to family is stronger, but only just.

The researchers found that young people who joined gangs often felt unloved by their parents. This seems to be the crux of the matter. Why do our youths join gangs or commit criminal behaviour? Because there is a need to belong. And if the family is not that source of belonging, then our kids will look elsewhere. Of course it’s not as simple as that.

…from NiuZila

THE MANY USES OF A BUS STOP

Our family lives directly across from a bus stop a heavily graffitied bus stop it stands there day and night rain or shine with a half munched timetable and a bus stop sign that has been smeared with mud and God knows what else. We all know that a bus stop is used to shelter those who catch the bus to wherever they are going. Not this bus stop how about every weekend we have a group of under age drinkers (the same group every weekend) drinking there they sit in there singing laughing a conversating and krumping to the 1 song from JSQUAD on 1 of their cellphones that is put on repeat from late Friday night until early saturday morning. What about the group of school kids waiting for the bus decided that the footpath,road and some poor persons front lawn was not enough room for their fight so they take it to the roof of the bus stop by the time cars had stopped to sort these teens out the biggest guy out of them all (who was probably samoan, judging from the samoan expletives that was coming out of his mouth…..

…from Memoirs of Seki

Gangstaz

I was invited by a mate to a special church service the other evening. It was an evangelical/pentecostal church, predominantly Pacific Islander. It was a branch of a church based in the U S of A.

That night, the sermon was preached by a Pastor from the States. He commented how there’s a scene on Sione’s Wedding where there is a Palagi guy, Derek from “G-g-g-Gfield” (Glenfield on the North Shore is a affluent part of Auckland/Aukilani), acts like a “gee”.

He’s a very funny character in the movie, and everyone in the crowd laughed, thinking about how hilarous it is to see a Palagi trying to act all hip-hop, down with the brown, a real “gee”. But then the Pastor said, “It’s funny you laugh, because that’s exactly how I reacted when I saw a lot of youths here in Auckland trying to act all gansta”.

A reflective pause from the crowd hit home the comparison.

…from NiuZila

South Auckland / Aukilani Saute

South Auckland has become synonymous with crime and poverty to many New Zealanders (read Palagi). It is the ‘ghetto’, the eye-sore that middle New Zealand (read Palagis) can drive past on the highway and not think about. It’s that part of town that people (read Palagis) are too scared to venture through. It becomes the political scapegoat at every national election. It is held up as the consequences of lawlessness and moral corruption. It’s where there are never enough cops and never enough prisons. It’s the “bad” side of town, the other side of the tracks that parent’s fear to let their children go.

Yet hardly any (if any at all) of these New Zealanders who espouse these perceptions of South Auckland, have ever stayed in South Auckland. Parachute reporting does injustice to the real South Auckland. Talk back radio is full of people who have ‘friends’ who have been to South Auckland, but never themselves…

…by NiuZila

Wait…I’m eating wha? Gator!?!?

I’m still a young man..okay..somewhat young (25 son!)..and it used to kinda get to me how there were (no offense) white people running workshops, talking about situations as if THEY were living in the ‘jects and in low-income areas. Don’t take me wrong, I greatly appreciate them for their work, effort and strides that they’ve taken in order to try and assist low income youth and families (I LOVE WHITE PEOPLE..haha. especially the girls), but c’mon now. You don’t ask your mechanic about laundry nor do you ask a bus driver how to fly a plane. So the fact that YB (YouthBuild) has been incorporating young people who know what’s necessary to make it in the hood and still be successful in life? RIGHTEOUS. It just fits. Plus if your target area is youth, it’ll be more effective if a peer of the similar age group and/or situation informs/tells/help them. Plus it’s empowering for youth when you let them become active facets of their communities as well as inspirational pieces to those who are listening and learning from them…

…by LiJh, Samoan Genius