The Urban Grind

"Why People Should Be Nice." [an open letter]


People should be nice together because you don't know what they been through and somebody in they family might be dead. The second thing you should be nice to people is how they look and talk and dress, and they go end up thinking you're bullying them then they go end up killing theirselves. Everyone would know because they always tryin to be funny when it not.

Keorra is a 7th grade girl who has attended BCC since our first preview gathering. You could define her just like every other kid in the hood - frontin and tryin to be hard, not wanting to be exposed as weak, wanting attention or seeking positive interaction. Please don't define her. Too many of the children we walk with are defined by the world and not the One who made it. In stark contrast with our first cold, abrasive encounter with Keorra, she now endearingly attaches herself to Jenny's hip, helping with the younger kids at church.

More importantly, she now sees BCC as a safe place to express herself without fear of reprisal or ridicule. This is why she wrote this letter - boldly unprompted, and handed it to Jenny after church one day. It took Jenny and I a few times reading through this letter to make any sense of it, much less to transcribe it to this page... but we read it, which is far more than many others in her life. Keorra is a valued member of our community and we are hoping she will see herself as a valuable asset to the southside community too. Keorra's letter is a glimpse into life here. Just another day in the life of neglected neighborhoods... just another day in the life of Bridge City Community.

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