Denzel Washington: Stop Blaming The Prison System Black America – “It Starts At Home”

Denzel Washington has starred in some of my favorite films.  From Man on Fire to The Manchurian Candidate to The Siege, I’ve always enjoyed the work he has produced.

I’ve also appreciated many of the things he has said publicly, as well.

In his latest commentary, he voices to those of the community in Black America, and it’s a similar message to what Bill Cosby used to say, which got an uproar.

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When it comes to filling up the prison system in America, Washington says that American blacks should not blame the system, but should look to solve the problem by starting at home.

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“It starts at the home. It starts at home. It starts with how you raise your children. If a young man doesn’t have a father figure, he’ll go find a father figure,” the Academy Award-winner told the New York Daily News.

Washington, whose latest role as a dogged defense attorney in Roman J. Israel, that the role has reinforced his position on the matter.

“So you know I can’t blame the system. It’s unfortunate that we make such easy work for them,” Washington said.

Washington recounted his own childhood and youth experience.

“I grew up with guys who did decades (in prison), and it had as much to do with their fathers not being in their lives as it did to do with any system,” said Washington. “Now I was doing just as much as they were, but they went further.”

“I just didn’t get caught, but they kept going down that road and then they were in the hands of the system,” the actor added. “But it’s about the formative years. You’re not born a criminal.”

Washington is actually presenting a biblical worldview in the matter.

Men are conceived in sin.  We inherit a sin nature from our parents and that is where we are naturally bent.

However, we are also instructed as parents to train our children in the way they should go so that when they are older they will not depart from it (Proverbs 22:6).  We are told this happens in the home, not the public indoctrination centers we call public schools.  God commands:

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.  These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart.  You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.  You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. -Deuteronomy 6:5-9

Sadly, in the black community, fathers are often absent completely.  Single mothers are often left to raise young children all on their own.  Sometimes they are just as complicit in the matter by engaging in sex outside of marriage.  Yet, no matter, the children are often the casualties in the parents’ choices.

As Scripture also teaches us, “The LORD is slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generations” (Numbers 14:18).

He is not speaking of holding children accountable for the sins of their fathers for that would be a contradiction of His holy nature to do so (Ezekiel 18:20).  What is referenced here is that because fathers act wickedly, that is then taught and conveyed to the children to behave in a similar manner and thus, children end up following in their fathers’ footsteps and reaping the same consequences as their fathers.

As my friend Taleeb Starkes has continually pointed out, the family is what must be built back up in the black community if it is to survive.

I’ll add that Marxists have the family, no matter the ethnicity, in their sites, and white families must be on guard against the same seductions the black community has come under.

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