Forgiveness is a complicated thing. There are no set rules for when someone should be forgiven, or when they’ve gone past the threshold for forgiveness. Even still, people can get offended just for the people another person chooses to forgive. About few months ago there was a musician by the name of Ameer Vann who was accused of emotional and physical abuse of a signiﬁcant other back when he was 17. He was part of a Hip-Hop band named “Brockhampton,” and after this news broke he was kicked out.
Without context, you could probably look at this and say the right move was made, but with the context, you might think differently. You see Ameer has confessed many times to the fact that he was a person with a troubled past. Before anybody was making any allegations against him. In an unreleased song by Brockhampton named BOBBY, Ameer says the following:
“My decisions, I ain’t sure if they the right ones, my daddy used to beat my mommy, I would ﬁght him, but I been thinkin’ that I’m kinda just like him,” not only saying that he grew up in an abusive household, but also admitting that this rubs off on him. In the song MILK, he says, because I couldn’t sleep… and there’s a couple women and they know some things. About lies that I done told and (things) that I done said (people) that I robbed, so I’m real paranoid,” not only admitting that he consumes illegal substances, but also touching on his past of robbery. This is a common theme within Ameer’s music, illegal sale, and consumption of drugs. Ameer has also has stated many times that his father was not a great role model to him, some lyrical examples of this are:
“My male role models drug dealers and thugs, my father learned how to solve problems with guns,” from the song FIGHT,
“My daddy taught me how to sell dope, turn grams into elbows, light it up when the L rolled, black mask used to kick doors,” from the song SWAMP and,
“Sold out by my father, he gon’ feel the karma when I get the, get the commas,” from the song BOYS. But the biggest thing was the fact that he has been saying that he wants to be a better person. In an interview with Viceland he said the following:
“There was a time period where I was not doing the right things and, I hit a really low point. And I was like, what do I do?… I (could) see the edge of the cliff coming. (So) I just downloaded the Bible on my phone and started reading it. And that sense of relief… that knot unwinding… that tension going away was the best feeling for me ever, I really needed that. I think what that moment, was is I discovered I had a hole in myself, that I was trying to ﬁll with things that would never ﬁll it.” Some lyrical examples are:
“I just saw my P.O. (Parole Ofﬁcer) he like me though, clean money, tryna stay up out the streets, though,” from the song SUNNY,
“I know I make mistakes, I try to not repeat ’em, but I’m still working on it, negotiate with demons,” from the unreleased song DEMO 19.
Is Ameer exempt from criticism for what he did? No. Must one forgive him for what he did? Not at all.
But one thing to keep in mind is there are two sides to each story. What do you think about forgiveness?
[Jackson Q. Jones is 15 years old and is a product of Pasadena Unified School District. He currently attends Aveson Global Leadership Academy in Altadena, and is in the 11th grade. He may be contacted via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org or through The Journal at: journal@ pasadenajournal.com.]