The Deception of the Gang Lifestyle by Yasîn Abdul Shakûr
The name I was given at birth was Tristan Scaggs. However, I go by Yasîn Abdul Shakûr. I am currently serving time for attempted murder. Growing up in the hood, facing structural racism at every moment in the hood, and suffering from the illusions of the gang lifestyle gives me a unique perspective.
Systemic racism played a monumental role in the creation of ghettos. It is no longer a secret how poverty, resulting from racist policies around housing and employment opportunities, have ravaged the Black community. The Black communities of Chicago have been purposely disenfranchised, heavily targeted, policed, and decimated to the point of despair. These communities lack access to proper education and jobs, safe neighborhoods, and quality living. However, Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an 13:11 Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves.
When we live a gang lifestyle, we are doing our enemies a favor. We are playing into the hands of our oppressors. To my brothers that are still in those hoods in search of guidance and a way to live, Wallâhi (By Allâh!) You have not known and will NEVER know true guidance unless and until you analyze the life of this Beautiful Man/Messenger of Allâh, Prophet Muhammad (saw)!
Any other way of life besides Islam is one lacking true purpose and direction! At the end of the day we all are looking for someone to model our lives after and unfortunately we come up short every time when we look at those in and around those street blocks we are confined to. However, there existed a man who was the embodiment of what a man is, whose life was fortunately preserved for those of us in search of that thing that speaks to the very essence of us, and that was the Prophet Muhammad(saw).
This man was and is the only man that exemplified in every area of his life what it means to be a Man.We see this in his care and concern about not just everyone around him, but even to the environment as well. The gentle approach he took with the people. He accepted every responsibility with steadfastness. His undying love of being who he was created to be, which is a humble servant of Allâh was remarkable. Brothers if you don’t do anything else of benefit in your life, please don’t squander the opportunity to discover what Message this man(prophet Muhammad(saw)came with.