Pardon me Mark Wahlberg, but wait your turn!
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Pardon me Mark Wahlberg, but wait your turn!
By "Big Dog" Benny Henderson Jr., Doghouse Boxing (Jan 28, 2015)

Mark Wahlberg
Mark Wahlberg
Asking for forgiveness or forgiving the ones who sin against you is not always an easy task. Especially when the iniquity was on a personal level, and when you verbally or physically attack an individual over their creed or the color of their skin, there is no denying it, you have taken debauchery to a whole new level.

Case in point, many feel that the former rapper, model and now actor, Mark Wahlberg should not be forgiven for his wrong doings, which occurred twenty-seven years ago.

In 1986, Mark who has been described as a punk kid growing up in Boston, he and some white friends, hurled rocks as well as racial slurs at a group of mostly black fourth graders. Wahlberg and two other white youths were issued a civil rights injunction: essentially a stern warning that if they committed another hate crime, they would be sent to jail.

Just a year later, a sixteen year old Wahlberg assaulted two Vietnamese men while trying to rob them of beer. That assault actually landed Mark some serious charges including assault and battery, and basically what adds up to a hate crime. The former state prosecutor Judith Beals said Wahlberg’s crimes stand out due to the fact he had actually violated the prior injunction with another attack on minorities. Mark spent 45 days in prison.

This past November Wahlberg filed a pardon application, hoping to get exonerated for his hate crimes. Basically using his celebrity status and his work with troubled youths to announce that he is a changed man.

My question is, can one change?

Yes, I do believe they can so such a thing. But some of his victims believe Mark is still the racist that he was as a teen, particularly Kristyn Atwood, who was on the wrong end of a rock thrown by Mark and the other white teens. She has been quoted, “I do not care who he is, if you are a racist, you are always going to be a racist, I do not think he should get pardoned.”

Although I do feel for Atwood and what she and the others suffered that day from the hands of Wahlberg and his friends, I do disagree with her statement on, “once a racist, always a racist.”

The problem is this. People can and do change, once a drunk does not mean you will always be a drunk, once a cheater does not always make you a cheater. I feel it is easy for her to make that statement because of the two documented accounts of Wahlberg, and who he is.

I do believe what Mark did was seriously uncalled for and by no way should be forgotten. But, forgiveness is bliss; it breaks the chains of hate. And I do believe Wahlberg should be forgiven for his past crimes. Hell, child molesters have been freed from prison after their sexual crimes against children. Again, I do believe Mark Wahlberg should be forgiven for his past crimes, and I do think, he should not pass judgment on what he was over twenty years ago.

With that being said, I do not feel he should be pardoned for his crimes. I believe he is a talented actor, has done some great things for the youth. But, his past crimes should be a reminder of what he was, what he came from, that has shaped him in to the man he is today. A better one.

And I have to say this, before anybody else in this world gets pardoned, especially a celebrity, our U.S. President should pardon former heavyweight champion, the first black heavyweight champion, Jack Johnson. That story to come.

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