We've got a crack dealer as a neighbor on one side of us. I assume he is a crack dealer. At least, he has a very serious pot business. This neighbor has a lot of friends and collegues who spend time in his front yard discussing business dealings. They also watch and comment very closely on the happenings of...everything.
Yesterday I was in the front yard, the part of our yards that connect with a fence inbetween (praise Allah the back is not shared) watering the flowers and there they were 1 neighbor and 4 friends high as kites discussing the merits of various hoes, b*&^%*s, mother f*&^#%s, and N*gg#^s. No I don't mean, brothers, mother funtimes, and nuggets.
Junia was with me, and paying attention to them. As I started tuning into what they were talking about I started to feel more and more exposed, unsafe, and scared of how my daughter would internalize this. They weren't talking about us but were watching both of us very closely (the way that people who are totally stoned and high watch whatever is moving), but I was also bending over and moving. It didn't take me long to decide we needed to leave, and went back inside, of course.
This points to some serious questions for us about society, racism, questions about housing and injustice and then for us as parents questions about living the gospel, where we want to live, how to confront injustice on a personal and a societal level, and how to be parents to a child in a way that is safe for her, but also confronts the realities of society.
Got any thoughts, articles, or even prayers on this?