Saturday, December 10, 2011

One-way ticket continued...

There is so much to cover when it comes to discussing the one-way ticket.  I have personal friends that have been negatively affected by the distribution of illegal drugs.  My conversations with them have been in-depth and each one of them told me that selling drugs was the biggest mistake of their lives.  One of them went as far as saying, “the dope game is a no-win situation, period.” 
The cop-out of, “doing what I got to do to take care of my family” is garbage.  If that were the case, working two or three jobs at a time would be the solution.  What happens to your family when you get caught? Remember, you will get caught.  Now your family is in a worse situation than before because you are in jail and they still don’t have the money they need to take care of the household.

In the game of chess, pawns are used to set up the more dominant pieces.  What the street corner drug dealer doesn’t realize is that he is just a small pawn in the big dope game.  The big guy isn’t going to be there with bail money, or vouch for one of his employees who just got caught selling drugs to an under cover agent.  So the local dope boy is basically risking his freedom to sell drugs for somebody else.    

Standing on the corner all night, regardless of the weather and selling a product for somebody else is just like a prostitute working for a pimp. For example, a young boy sells drugs to strangers for a small profit while the big drug guy gets a large cut of the money.  A young girl sells her body to strangers for a small profit while the pimp takes a large cut of the money.  See the similarities?

There are families right here in Folkston where three or four generations of men have been sent to prison on drug related charges.  It seems like they are teaching the next generation the dope game as if they were passing down a bakery that had been in the family for years.  The dad learned the "tricks" of the game from his dad or brother and then teaches those same "tricks" to his son and so on.

Some get out of jail and within six months are right back in there for doing the same thing.  It is stupid to do the exact same thing over and over again and expect a different outcome.  A change of environment is necessary if a person wants to stay away from the very thing that landed them in prison.  I don’t need to go to prison to know that it’s not the place I want to spend time.  I’ll take the word of the people who’ve been there as gospel.

Logic would tell us that if we see our parents or friends doing something that leads them to spending time in prison that we would try to stay as far away from that lifestyle as possible.  Sadly, the threat of going to prison isn’t enough for some people to walk away from because the allure of making fast money calls their name.

Being a hustler is not standing on the corner selling dope.  Being a hustler means “legally” doing everything you can to take care of yourself and your family.  The real hustler’s are the people who get up every morning and go to a job that won’t send him to prison. 

If that means working three minimum wage jobs, cutting grass and washing cars on the side to pay the bills, so be it.  At least you have a clear conscious and your freedom is never at stake.  If drug dealers could only take the same approach used in selling as much dope as possible and turn it into a legitimate hustle, they could make just as much money and even more over a period of time.

The future can be bright for anyone, regardless of the environment a person grows up in or what his or her neighborhood is like.  I personally don’t want to see another young person from Folkston spend a day in prison for getting involved in something that is so avoidable.

Originally published by the Charlton County Herald on April 13, 2010

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