How sad that a talented Bridgeport athlete’s most recent picture in the paper is a mug shot. Perhaps if Bridgeport High School and the rest of our community took more interest in him than just his ability on the football field, his name and photo would be included in a very different headline. Especially now, when he should be preparing to head to college, not to court on such serious charges!
I can’t help but wonder if he were a white kid from a mid- to upper-class family, would he have been arrested at all? And by the way, what race was the kid that was with him – the one they let go home? Why was that kid not arrested? Why did police just go to that kid’s house and have a talk with him and let him off?
What exactly leads to the arrest of one kid, and a stern “talking to” another? Surely it’s not race or who your parents are, is it?
If I sound angry, damn right I am. No, the kid arrested is not my son, but he could have been.
Although my husband and I grew up and graduated in this town, my husband would rather we not live here. Why? Because he’s Mexican. He knows on a personal basis what it’s like to be harassed by local police. Sometimes the more things change, the more they stay the same.
Back in the late 1980s we had some awesome Mexican football stars playing at Bridgeport. And even then, they were were only valuable to the school and community while they were on the football field. Not a single one of them was guided by a caring mentor toward college and success.
Fortunately, my husband was not one of those kids. Through his father’s good example, a stint in the Army, and the right education, he has achieved personal success. (But, ironically, he was intensely harassed [again] for a while by Bridgeport PD when we first moved back to Bridgeport in 2003 to be closer to family…)
It takes a community to raise a child, and in Bridgeport we have failed again.
I was born in Bridgeport. My twin sister and I were delivered in the “old” Bridgeport hospital by Dr. Bryant. Most days I’m proud to say this. But not today.
To the boy whose handsome face and name were so shamefully printed by this local paper, I’m sorry we failed you. I hope you will fight the charges against you! Hire a good lawyer and have every kid who was not arrested subpoenaed to testify to the events that occurred the night of your arrest.
It’s time for our community to truly respect and encourage, appreciate and promote the equality of each of our young people! Regardless of their skin color, their last name or which side of the tracks they live on, they each deserve a future filled with success. And as the adults they are looking to for guidance, we should all be stepping up and helping them get there – not using them for our Friday night entertainment, then discarding them carelessly to the wayside when football season is over!