MEMPHIS, Tenn. — "Black Men Deserve to Grow Old." That is the campaign Mia Jaye, Young Dolph's partner, started after her own brother was killed. The campaign helps and supports those who have lost a loved one to violent crime. Its overall goal is to "work towards a future where black families do not have to lose their brothers, sons or father figures ever again from violent crime."
Now that her partner and the father of her children is another victim of violent crime, her words are even stronger.
On Instagram, her team wrote, ”Black men deserve to grow old. This statement rings true now more than ever. With the growing mortality rate of African American men in America, it’s important we stay together in solidarity and choose love instead of hate.”
It is a message local activists such as Kevin Brooks and Rev. Dr. Earle Fisher have been sending as well.
“Black Men Deserve to Grow Old is just one campaign that should call to action all of us who proclaim that we care about Black lives…All of us have blood on our hands because we have either constructed these conditions or been way too complicit in trying to resolve them,” said Fisher.
“Violence is an expression of trauma, an expression of neglect, an expression of disenfranchisement,” Brooks.
It is an expression that many have grown numb to experiencing.
“It’s becoming normal. I can’t even cry for my favorite rapper because…This is senseless. This is stupid. This is stupid as hell,” said Young Dolph fan Chelsea Benson.
As the community mourns its loss, many want to address the problem and end the violence.
“Go talk to your peers. Tell them to put the guns down. It ain’t worth it. It aint worth it at all…Love outweighs hate. Faith outweighs fear. I promise you,” said Benson.