Their sons have been killed or critically injured, and now six Memphis moms are working to stop gun violence before another young man is killed.
Tamika Broadnax believes in giving the customer what they want in her southeast Memphis hair salon. But when it comes to raising her son, she follows a very different, conservative approach.
She checks his every move, and she believes in the ‘work for what you get’ parenting model.
“When you have boys, that’s giving and giving and we do so much,” Broadnax said. “Those boys grow up to be grown boys, and they become irresponsible.”
The other mothers agree with her.
“If you’re not teaching your children to respect you, you’re sending you children out there to disrespect others,” Tanya Parker told FOX13. “And that’s what brings the crime.”
In addition to better parents skills as a solution to stop violent crime, these moms believe more job opportunities would help.
The moms also think that if the young black men who killed their sons had been mentored by an older, wiser man, they wouldn’t have seen gun violence as the answer. They want more help from rappers and more street walking from pastors.
“All of our youth and young men are not going to church,” Joyce Johnson said. Bring the church to them. That’s what Street Ministries is about.”
“They don’t trust the police because they fear them. They don’t trust the preacher, majority, because you have some of the pastors that’s doing some of the same things that ordinary people are doing,” Broadnax added.
Along with the preachers, the moms feel rappers could serve as a positive influence.
“I was thinking that if I could personally reach out to some of these rappers and (see if) you (could) turn in your gun for a ticket to a concert,” Broadnax said.
FOX13 spoke to rapper and businessman Al Kapone during a recording session in Ohio. We asked if a gun swap for a free concert ticket would work.
“I can’t see people bringing a gun to get a ticket,” he said.
Al Kapone did say things could work.
“A lot of times the violence comes from being disrespected. Simple thing is if you want respect, you gotta give respect.”
Either way, Broadnax is not waiting for crime to catch her son.
“From this day forward, I don’t care what I have to do. I’m gonna fight for my son,” Broadnax said.
Several of the moms have started support groups for other parents who have lost kids or want to stop the crime.
CLICK HERE to join the mothers: https://www.facebook.com/MoMsWarReady
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