Wednesday, December 7, 2016

YDEV Event 2

Image result for new jersey 4So for my second YDEV event I went to another Woman and Gender Studies film. This one was called "Out In The Night" and was about four Black, Gay, Women from New Jersey whom one day decided to venture to New York for a Gay Pride festival and later that night were verbally and physically assaulted by a male on the street and were put in jail for defending themselves. The women in the video were projected as gang members, bloodthirsty lesbians, and were even compared to viscous animals by the media before the full story even came out in court. All of the women wound  up spending time in prison for "their crime"

This video to me was very hard to watch. It was very interesting to see how in a place so close to home and in this progressive era of humanistic rights that there are still people who are so hateful towards others because of sexual preference. Not only were they not excepted outside of their community because they were gay but they were also black, and also women. They are literally in three minority or less privileged classes here in the United States. These women were also defending themselves and there was video evidence to prove it and they all still got convicted of the charges. The man that attacked them was so an anti-gay supporter which clearly showed motivation on a hate crime and was never charged. The judge in the case was also very biased and the jury that convicted them was not a "jury of their peers". To me this how judicial system we had that was meant to defend people and convict those who truly committed crimes failed these women and now they have to live with the consequence of if they didn't defend themselves they were endangering their lives but by defending themselves they get put into prison. Also the way the media portrayed them was horrible. The media is willing to put whatever spin they choose depending on the audience that is listening and watching which really bugs me.
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As of this relating to youth work, is really showed how much injustice there still is in the world and to fight for every inch you can get. It also will help me to engage students in these topic of conversation and educate them so that way they don't hate but even if they don't agree are still tolerant and willing to engage with others by seeing them as people first.

What is Youth Work?

To me Youth Work is engagement, its fun, its being creative, and its learning everyday. People ask me all the time what youth development is and I give them the jargon of well its education, social work, and non profit studies. Usually their response is oh so what exactly do you want to do? I usually just tell them I want to be an athletic director and they engage into that conversation. What they don't understand from me saying that I want to be an Athletic Director is that I want to create student leaders through sports. I want to coach and help engage these students. I want to push kids so hard to the very edge of where they can go to see how far than can go and watch them realize how much they have grown and become independent people, learners, and leaders through their experiences. I want them to learn life lessons that they may not get in a classroom but through being a part of something that is bigger than you, me, and even them. I want them to go into the world knowing that they didn't just played a sport in high school but they learned how to be or be a part of something because of that sport no matter how successful or unsuccessful they were. To me, THAT is Youth Work.

PS. The article I read was This is Youth Work: Stories from Practice. I really enjoyed reading it because it gave me a sense of what real world and real life experiences are like for actual in field youth workers and what things I may encounter also and how to help be prepared for them and egage the topic.