Their uncle called them “losers”.
What can make a difference in the life of a youth whose behaviors are at once destructive to humanity and self-destructive?
We hope and wait for answers to the “why” of the Marathon tragedy; those answers may never materialize. Why was there such a disconnect to the rest of humankind? Why would creating bombs and firing guns be an answer?
Last year, Adrien worked to photograph a wonderful organization working with Lowell area youth. The group, UTEC, (United Teen Equality Center) has the mission to “ignite and nurture the ambition of Lowell’s most disconnected young people to trade violence and poverty for social and economic success”.
Listen to the stories these young people tell of how they were once disenfranchised and the difference UTEC has made in their lives. The following short video and the story of the project are the results of Adrien’s association with UTEC last summer.
At this time when we are wondering what triggered the Tsarneav brothers to disconnect from humanity, it makes me pause and wonder if there was a moment that might have changed their course as well. This is, of course, a mammoth leap of speculation.
We may never know that answer to why the Tsarneav brothers did what they did, why their uncle called them “losers”. But we can be thankful for the UTECs of the world who help the disenfranchised become successful members of the world in which they live.