The Violent Ones

From the Ghetto to the reservation, Oscar Baker wonders if his people are violent or just poor

I was 18 and faded. My left wrist was wrapped up because of a recent pit-bull attack. It’s night but the breath-sapping Florida heat only added to the tensions. I’m half drunk on Bacardi and out to prove myself. I overheard Marcus call my sister a bitch over the phone, and I was about to force an apology. He pulls up in a white Impala. My sister gets in quickly, trying to avoid the conflict. I knock on his window demanding an apology. My brotha CJ overhears and pulls out a .38.

I feel like a toddler in size 12 boots. There, only because I’m too cowardly to look like a coward.

Marcus peels off and CJ takes aim. I tell him not to pop off because Kristina was in the car. And I’m stuck thinking how the fuck did I get here.

Krissy gets back, a few hours later, in the back of a Crown Vic. She has a bruise. Apparently Marcus wanted to put a “green light” on my head. A green light is street talk for a bounty. Krissy tried to stop it. But now I’m in a world of violence and need a way out.

I decide to move back to Big Cove, leaving a predominately black neighbourhood to go back to my mother’s people, the Elsipogtog First Nation.

Two months back and I’m already in another fight.

Full story here.

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