There are no “Bad Boys!”

Posted by at 27 April, at 16 : 24 PM Print

By Dr. Neals J. Chitan

After twenty years of dealing with crime and criminals internationally, I have come to the conclusion that there are no bad boys!

From working closely with boys that are criminally charged, boys in jail or boys who display a propensity to crime and evil, I am convinced that they are not “bad” boys but;

*Misguided boys

*Hurt boys

*Traumatized boys

*Grief stricken boys

*Disappointed boys

*Negatively labelled boys

*Rejected boys

*Low self-esteem/self-perception boys

*Depressed boys

*Fatherless boys

*Bullied boys

*Sexually abused boys

*Unwanted and unloved boys.

By the way, these are only some of the identifiable issues boys have to deal with, and the list goes on and on.

Recently, I watched an episode of the T.V Show “Killer Kids” which featured Ted Bundy, one of the most notorious 20th century killers, who confessed before his execution in 1989 to the gruesome killing of thirty individuals between 1974 and 1978 in seven American states.

Despite the sadistic, psychopathic and sociopathic behavior of this character, I was glued to the screen as Ted’s childhood story unfolded. I listened intensely hoping to put a finger on the negative influences that contributed to this handsome boy becoming the 20th century worst criminal, and they were so many, that I needed all ten fingers and ten toes to pin down his dysfunctional childhood experiences.

And so, the question that has to considered is; “What product do we expect to raise, when like Ted Bundy, our boys are facing so many of the issues listed above, with no one to help them decipher them?”

Imagine, being born to an unwed mother who had to hide you away to cover the family shame of those time. Then you are brought back in the family as the son of your grandparents with your mom as your sister, amidst strong allegations that the same grandpa, the father of your mother, who is a wife beater, tyrannical bully, animal hater/killer and bigot may be your biological father. What a perfect environment for the molding of a sociopath and criminal, and “what do you know?” It did!!

As I watched and listened to the avalanche of terror rained down on America by this young man- the product of his environment, my mind went back to the hundreds of boys whom I have spoken with in jails, who are paying the terrible price, a price that parents, guardians and teachers who should be held responsible for their neglect, abuse and vindictiveness should pay.

On April 08, 2017, after working with thirty two inmates at Her Majesty Prison in St. Kitts as a crime reduction specialist,  it was my turn to listen to the stories and impact of these “Project STOP ‘n’ THINK” graduates before receiving their certificates of completion.

During these feedback sessions, I heard stories of; drug trafficking for survival, of fatherless boys, of gang involvement looking for acceptance and belonging, of hurt boys who did not know how to handle it and of unmanageable anger caused by psychological damage.

As these men off loaded their deep emotional hurt, I noticed that they continuously referred to me as their “new dad” or father who had taken the time to help them untangle the web of social dysfunctions that shackled their minds. Then it dawned on me that what was missing in each story was the lack of parental affirmation and leadership in the lives of these young men to guide them into productive manhood.

Despite their heinous crimes that have resulted in most of them doing life sentences, I saw the glow of emotional and mental freedom on the faces of these men and I said to myself, “Indeed, there are no bad boys,” only boys who need to be decoded and set on the path to fulfillment and success.

I have therefore committed the rest of my life to helping “bad boys” find at least one good trait in themselves, which we can use to build their wings for soaring.


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