Father of Milwaukee man whose death started riots takes responsibility: ‘I’d like to apologize to my kids’

Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of BizPac Review.

Given his thug-like behavior and eventual tragic fate, it’s probably safe to say that Syville Smith, the 23-year-old black Milwaukee man shot by police on Sunday after he brandished a weapon while fleeing a traffic stop, probably didn’t have the best upbringing.

His grieving father, Patrick, admitted as much when he talked to Fox6 while helping with the cleanup made necessary by a night of lawless rioting and looting.

“What are we gonna do now? Everyone playing their part in this city, blaming the white guy or whatever, and we know what they’re doing. Like, already I feel like they should have never OK’d guns in Wisconsin. They already know what our black youth was doing anyway. These young kids gotta realize this is all a game with them. Like they’re playing Monopoly. You young kids falling into their world, what they want you to do. Everything you do is programmed. I had to blame myself for a lot of things too because your hero is your dad and I played a very big part in my family’s role model for them. Being on the street, doing things of the street life: Entertaining, drug dealing and pimping and they’re looking at their dad like ‘he’s doing all these things.’ I got out of jail two months ago, but I’ve been going back and forth in jail and they see those things so I’d like to apologize to my kids because this is the role model they look up to. When they see the wrong role model, this is what you get. They got us killing each other and when they even OK’d them pistols and they OK’d a reason to kill us too. Now somebody got killed reaching for his wallet, but now they can say he got a gun on him and they reached for it. And that’s justifiable. When we allowed them to say guns is good and it’s legal, we can bear arms. This is not the wild, wild west y’all. But when you go down to 25th and center, you see guys with guns hanging out this long, that’s ridiculous, and they’re allowing them to do this and the police know half of them don’t have a license to carry a gun. I don’t know when we’re gonna start moving. I’ve gotta start with my kids and we gotta change our ways, to be better role models. And we gotta change ourselves. We’ve gotta talk to them, put some sense into them. They targeting us, but we know about it so there’s no reason to keep saying it’s their fault. You play a part in it. If you know there’s a reason, don’t give in to the hand, don’t be going around with big guns, don’t be going around shooting each other and letting them shoot y’all cause that’s just what they’re doing and they’re out to destroy us and we’re falling for it,” Patrick Smith said Sunday.

 

While Patrick does play the ‘narrative’ on some issues, like gun control and whites “targeting” them, his acknowledgement of at least some responsibility for how his son turned out is a stunning and refreshing admission, as is his actions helping his community clean up the mess.

Indeed, a father’s involvement and example play a key role in a child’s upbringing. If this vicious cycle is ever going to stop, it will be because more people stand up, take responsibility, and change their ways.

Watch the video below (some of Patrick’s statement appears about halfway in):

 

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Scott Morefield

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