We have about 2.7 inmates living in prison for every Latino college student living on campus. It is widely known that education, especially higher education, creates opportunities and lessens the likelihood of citizens entering a life of crime. This is a startling statistic, even though the comparison does not account for age differences, gender, commuter students, and type of crime committed. Why can’t our leadership get angry and fired up about this? We need to put more emphasis on educating our youth instead of worrying about same sex marriage and even to a certain extent illegal immigration (hey, they are going to keep coming, and yes, American businesses will continue hiring them). If we aren’t educating our children, we aren’t going to produce the leadership we need to move us ahead.
DiversityInc also published a blurb on this today referencing Bill Cosby. While I think that Bill Cosby’s criticisms of the black community are valid to a point, I am saddened that we don’t have a spokesperson or someone drawing attention to this with such furor in the Latino community. I do think that society’s lack of investment in schools and in after school and job training programs plays a big part in creating this tragedy, but we also have to look inward. I definitely think that there is a glorification of the “gangsta” or cholo lifestyle within our communities, and this is evidenced from the styles of clothing, choice of tattoos, music, etc. What do you think?