Georgia’s Bibb County Sheriff’s Office is doing its part to keep teens from ending up in the system, according to WMAZ. Its Consider the Consequences program aims to help kids ages 9 to 17 recognize the value of an education and put them on the path to a successful career.
But last week the sheriff’s office also dispensed some in-your-face tough love with the help of Bibb County Superior Court Judge Verda Colvin.
Colvin had a chance to spend some time with a group of teenagers, and she didn’t mince words when it came to giving them advice.
“What do you want to do? That’s the question you have to ask yourself: What do you want to do?” Colvin asked.
As the judge, who is African American, spoke to the teens, she brought out a body bag. And that’s when she kept it real with them.
“You can have the ultimate experience—you can be in this body bag,” she said. “Listen to me. The way you’re going, you will go to jail or you will end up in this body bag. The only way someone will know you are in here is by this tag with your name on it. Stop acting like you’re trash.
“I am sick and tired of seeing people who look like you and I come in my courtroom and I have to sentence them to prison,” she continued. “And then you hear them fussing on TV about African Americans being in the prison system. Well, guess what? If you don’t do what it takes to go there, you won’t be a part of it.”
After going viral with her lecture, Colvin said that she just wanted to get to the teens the best way she knew how, and she didn’t know it was being recorded.
“For some reason there was a decision to tape it, and I have to think it was predestined because I didn’t plan it. I wanted to speak to their hearts, and that’s what I did. I am shocked that it has gone that far. … I’m continually amazed because it renews what I’ve always thought. At the end of the day, everybody really cares about everybody else.”
Read more at WMAZ.com.