Kids of the Suburbs Take Note

Gail Davis, 07 March 2011

He observed that suburban kids are expected to behave, be the best in sports, and excel academically. And at the end of the day, the pressure gets to many of them. Guess what? Kids in the burbs struggle with self esteem, alcohol, drugs and gangs, too.

While in Texas, Andre has befriended a 15 year old boy who is trying to figure it all out. Some of his choices could eventually lead him to prison. Andre remains unflappable.

Basically, Andre said that was cool, but he needs to start training now because inmates don’t like rich white boys. He suggested that the teenager start taking Tai Kwando immediately to be prepared. Now that is a different approach. Most parents would not prepare their children with prison survival skills.

When Andre spoke at Good Shepherd Catholic church, no one got off the hook. Andre owned his stuff and talked about regrets and remorse. He held the kids in the audience accountable for not saying thank you to their parents. And he had the dads stand and told them they need to be strong positive role models with their kids. That includes saying I love you.
Then, when no one expected it, he called the pastor of the church up and challenged everyone to be supportive. He said in this country too often we criticize leadership instead of offering support.

I am convinced Andre Norman has more breadth of subject matter than just about any speaker I have seen. I don’t think he should be identified as the ex-con who turned his life around. Rather, the guy who learned how to read people and was not afraid to speak what he sees.

Andre was picked up at 7:30 a.m. this morning to spend the day with a school in Fort Worth and then off to visit Tarrant County Juvenile Detention Center. He visited there last December and promised he would be back. When Andre says something, he means it.

Back home and feeling blessed,