BLOG

June 2023 – Seven Charlestin

This is a transcript of a speech that Crave V leader, Seven Charlestin, gave at a Wake-Up Wednesday rally last month at the Pulse Memorial in Orlando.  The entire speech can be found on our YouTube channel.
I just want to advocate for my community … 

I thought it’d be good to come out and represent and speak for my neighborhood and, especially, my chapter of March for Our Lives. A lot of black communities don’t have the luxuries to be able to advocate for themselves the way they want to, because a lot of the social aspects of gun violence are crushing a lot of our neighborhoods. People who want to advocate for issues like gun violence have to risk their health and well-being, especially since a lot of the work that we’re doing in our communities is not paid.

And we don’t have the platform to do the type of work they want. I, like a lot of the other organizers I know in Pine Hills, whether we’re sick, injured, hurt, et cetera., are doing this civil work to try to support our community and prevent gun violence, daily.

Among other things, I want to talk about just some social aspects of gun violence and kind of the roots of them and how they transpire in my community, especially. Gun violence is an epidemic everywhere in America, but, in black communities, it’s 18 times more likely for a black American to be a victim of gun violence than a white American and any other community. And, most of those root causes are poverty, lack of access to resources, and the availability of guns.

One thing that I’ve been focused on a lot for the last two years is male patriarchy and just the way that our men are being raised and socialized, especially in our culture. Males for the most part are 50% of the population in America, and we’re over 80% of the suicides by gun violence.

And men are over 80% of the gun homicide victims. And, as far as it comes to mass shootings, just about 95% of mass shootings are taking place by men. And it’s largely because of the way that we’re socialized. Women have the same type of mental health issues, the same type of rates of poverty, et cetera. But, the way that men are raised to be, to fight for their identity above everything else is one of the key causes, I believe, of gun violence, especially in my community, where black males are especially a large faction of gun violence victims and offenders.

That’s something that my chapter of March for Our Lives focuses on in my community, mainly just finding ways to help young men, and kids in general deal with conflict resolution and understand how they can affect their community from a public safety standpoint.

I just wanted to come out to advocate for my community because, without me or one of the other few people from Pine Hills who is always advocating for gun violence prevention, I don’t think we will be represented. I want, as the fight against gun violence continues, I want people to remember that the black communities that are really at the brunt of some of this gun violence and the fact that, after the gun, I mean, if we ever get an assault weapon ban, we still need help with all the other root causes of gun violence, where it comes to just the help that boys and men need and, poverty and all those other aspects.

So thank you, guys.

Seven Charlestin

Crave V Leader

Photo by Agulia Creative

 

Tags: BAWN, Crave 5, Florida Rising, March for Our Lives, Moms Demand Action, Newtown Action Alliance, Prevent Gun Violence, Seven Charlestin

Become a Crave Candidate

Recent Posts

Thank you to the following generous donors:

CRAVE CHAMPIONS ($20,000 +)

Susan H. Marcy & Wilbur H. Marcy Trust, Winter Park FL

Dean and Jill Bosco and Family, Orlando FL

Davidson Family Foundation, San Jose CA

Bill Walker and Rev. Debbie McLeod, Winter Park, FL

 

CRAVE CHEERLEADERS ($2,000 +)

Rev. Michele Van Son and Rob Neill and Family, Winter Park FL

Ivor and Mary Scott Singer, Winter Park FL

Future Generations Fund, Lakeland FL

Florida Methodist Conference, Lakeland, FL

Kathleen Hoffman, Clearwater FL

Phillip Henry, Orlando FL

Charlotte and Dave Nielson, Winter Park FL

Bell Bank, Winter Park FL

Angie and Jeff Winn, Windermere FL

Ashley and Brian Vann, Winter Park FL

Katrina and Mark Jackson, Winter Park FL

Jim and Liz Stroz and Family, Winter Park FL

Blaire and Josh Lynch and Family, Winter Park FL

Barbie and Steve Boyd, Winter Park FL

Laura and Miles Toshie, Winter Park FL

Carin and Oscar Anderson, Orlando FL

RJ Sonomo Family Giving Fund, Orlando FL

Catherine and Skip Matthias and Family, Winter Park FL

Debby and Jim Manuel, Orlando FL

Kristin and Ryan Morgan and Family, Winter Park FL

Janice and Randy Ellington, Maitland FL

Massey Services, Inc., Orlando FL

Bailes Family Foundation, Winter Park FL

Beth and Bill Neidlinger, Winter Park FL

and the over 200 Crave Community Builders who’ve donated $2 to $2000.00!