Monday, October 21, 2013

Time Waits for No Man by David Goodman

Yesterday was my mother's earth day , 9yrs ago exactly was the last time I enjoyed one of those days with her as a free man, then the very next day (which is today 9yrs ago)I was taken away.......When the judge gives you time, he doesn't tell you that you could lose your mother, friends will abandon you, girlfriends will deny you or any of the strenuous things that happen to guys incarcerated.....We're all responsible for our own guilt but when it's apart of someone you love you tend to sway away from it.........In Retrospect, I had some great times and reared some great kids but even they become a lil too large for you when you're sequestered..........Noone understands the agony and pain but those who've experienced it, lived it or even felt it's wrath.....Life's a bitch and then you die, so every minute counts. Make sure you tell somebody you love them because you may not get the chance later on , a simple gesture to someone down or less fortunate could mean the whole world to that individual..............There was this guy here guys were taking advantage of because of his charge(child pornography).....My wife met his mother and grand mother and for some odd reason he told them that I would be training him......They talked to her and told her everything about the young fellow, I was completely reluctant to become involved with that because I have so many kids and don't like people taking advantage of a child......However my wife was touched and said "why are you allowing those guys to take advantage of that young boy? " I told her the story and said I don't have anything to do with it , she said God gave you too many talents but now you think you're God by judging people and sitting around complicit with others wrong doing........It struck me so hard because no matter where you go in life you will always come in contact with those whom we tend to run away from(personality-wise) but when you make peace with their consciousness you free your own , you move onto a better place in life..........That young boy not only got in the best shape of his life, but he also built a confidence that can not be broken........I've been gone along time but I'm not broken , I'm not who they want me to be and nor will I ever be anyone but David.A.Goodman! Love is what love does.....Enjoy your day

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Transcript from My 2 Minutes #Ourmarch #Marchon

A MESSAGE TO YOUNG BLACK MALES Almost everyday we hear of a young black male dying or going to prison. Too often after the young black male is captured the ending result is a sentence handed down so far in the future that we cant even imagine it coming. Too often when young black males go to home after school they are the ONLY man in the house! Too often after a divorce or parents split, because adults can't get along or one party wants to hurt the other the children fall by the wayside. Too often while being a boy, forced to be in the position of a man they're reminded that they're just like the father they don't know and they'll never anount to anything. Too often they come to school after a long night of getting their brothers and sisters ready for school, or perhaps they had a game over the weekend and nobody came or they slept on the couch or arent performing their best and before the end of day they have a referral and this is an undending cycle. Too often they walk down the street and are profiled and criminalized for their locks of hair, baggy clothes or even a hoody. Too often young black males are filled with hopes and dreams of running a ball rather than reading a book. Too often we turn on the tv and open magazines and they are portrayed as thugs or a threat to society. Too often they are pulled over and frisked for simply being black. OR shot and killed at a gas station because a white man thought his music was too loud. And with all of this 50 years after M.L.K. Had a dream, we turn on the news and see a young black male who was truly the victim be shot and killed and his killer go free but they don't quite understand because they're brother is serving life for the same thing. Too often we are firing teachers, closing schools and building prisons for those kids we determine will fill them based on their test scores. Too often clubs, parties, malls and football games are at capacity but noone is at the PTA meetings, or in line to vote at the polls. Too often we hear the statement "There are more black males in prison, than in college" Here in Florida there are over 100,000 people incarcerated, 93% of them are male. 48% of them, look like me. Where I'm from Jacksonville, Florida (Duval County) home of tough state attorney Angela Corey, we are the second county out of 67 for convictions. Too often when these young men are released they can't find a job and aren't given a second chance so they are forced to take chances to survive. And after serving 30-40 years for a crime they committed when they were 18, the parole board STILL won't give them a chance. Black men I believe in you and you are more than what you are portrayed to be. To every young boy or girl in a cell P.S. Never Give Up Hope.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

About the Author

If you really knew me you'd know that I was raised by my grandparents because my mother had me at 17. You'd know that although I was fatherless my grandfather is the BEST dad ever and the only dad I know. You'd know that since 4th grade I've voiced I wanted to be an attorney, that since I was 15 I randomly sat in on court cases, blogged and commented on criminal trials. At 17 I too became a teen parent. At 18 I graduated from a failing school and am still proud to have graced the halls of Jean Ribault!!!! At 19 I dropped out of college because motherhood and working seemed too much to bear, At 25 I bought my first home, graduated college (because I knew working for A company wasn't what God wanted for me) and got married, After graduating I decided to leave my job and follow my own dreams rather than working towards the dream of a corporation, At 26 I said something must be done to inform kids that juvenile justice is not so just and prison is REAL. At 28 I published my first book P.S. Never Give Up Hope and in just 4 months I've sold nearly 1000 books, visited various schools, spoken to a number of young people instilling hope within them that no matter where you're from or what you're going through you can do ANYTHING.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

My Journey

In the latter part of 2010 I began with working with "At Risk Youth" at William M. Raines High School here in Jacksonville, Florida after leaving corporate America. It was there and the students that inspired me to make an even bigger impact on the world. Initially I wanted to reach out to young people in prison and keep their letters in a notebook on my desk and when students would enter I would let them read it, to spark a conversation with them about their behavior and where it could leave them. A large percentage of them knew "Eddie" from middle school. They wore "Free Eddie Shirts", they gave him shoutouts on social media sites and even told me what a fun loving kid he was and they couldnt believe he was charged with murder. I searched news archives and blindly reached out to young people or people who were young at the times their crimes were committed. Once contact was made I starting writing each respective subject of the book without ever discussing the crimes they committed yet their lives before they got to prison. I found that they all dealt with issues at home some worst than others. They included single parent homes, drug abuse, alcoholism, feelings of abandonment, divorce, environment, homelessness and poverty. Many people think of these risk factors as excuses but working with the youth I see everyday how these factors can have an affect on children. They began to feel hopeless and resort to filling these voids with people and things. As David is quoted as saying in the book "Drugs are alternates to happiness missed from those we love or long to love". With each letter I received I learned something new about them. They once had hopes and aspirations and never in a million years did they think they'd be faced with spending the rest of their lives in prison. As time progressed I set up interviews to meet them face to face and I'll admit at first I was afraid not of them but the idea of visiting a prison alone. I was generally setup in an empty office with the inmate and a panic button. I never felt the need to use and often times sat it down after becoming engaged in conversation. I realized that these are people. No matter how the media tries to portray them and no matter the crime they were convicted of they are PEOPLE. They are sons, daughters, mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters and most importantly God's children. The book is just the beginning of a nationwide movement. Look for me in a school or juvenile program near you!!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Trading Walls by David Goodman

I woke up this morning to a grim reality, most of my kids are grown , my wife's aging gracefully and mom's gone to her forever home and so much more.....I've also lost alot of other loved ones over the years, a lot of friends have came and gone, Love lingers and some of it turns to hatred, your kids blame you for their mishaps and undoings...So many things have transpired in such a short time but I still remain optimistic and calm.This wall doesn't look the same nor does it feel the same because it isn't. 9 yrs ago, it was my bedroom but now it's a federal cell wall, it looks the same in the dark but the feelings totally different. All the things I boast about just a minute ago, I didn't have the joy of being there and seeing it with my own eyes, graduations ,promotions, celebration, tragedies,etc. because I traded walls.I thought having money , toys,chicks and power kept the walls clean but now bloods falling down and it's so dark I can't even see it .
I'm writing this in the dark be cause that's how I feel empty, left alone and resentful.
A Rat comes home from prison and they throw him a party , so what's a solider? I use to ask myself that all the time but now none of that matters to me because mom's gone, kids are grown and my wife's pulling the load alone, while I'm sitting here sulken in my misery.
Encouragement's suppose to be special so I encouraged a many men to stick to the code and get paper but there's nothing special about that because once you trade walls the rules change and everyone fades away.It's like anything in life: For Ex.
One day i was in the club just doing me and a childhood friend came up to me and said Dirty Dave I see u done came up , let me hit that blunt you're smoking.I gave him a stillborn look and said : I don't smoke with strangers I knew you when we were kids but after all of these years I don't have a clue who you are, so back outta my face and re-address me like you would any other man or get outta my face and don't say anything...I know it may have offended him but so what , it wasn't about his feeling it was mine , and that's how everyone feels so learning someone over is key to everything.As for me, being away for so long, I know I have to learn everyone all over again.
Especially my children, you know how it is when those hormones get to kicking in , you don't exist till they need u then you're important.My wife isn't a young lady anymore she's an independent woman playing both roles since i'm not there , so going home is gonna be a transition as well because the roles are gonna have to change......However I do have an advantage because I see her all the time so her changes I've adapted to and needs and wants I know so we're learning each other together and that has to happen...Every one becomes a stranger when the walls trade, noone feels your pain like you do so they don't know you anymore either. Oh how I long for that wall I use to touch every morning getting outta the bed.
There's not enough money printed that's worth your freedom so when you look at that wall think of how precious it is and don't trade it for anything..........