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Why Did So Many Young Black People Act Stupid In Virginia Beach?

Updated on May 5, 2014
A beautiful sunrise in Virginia Beach.
A beautiful sunrise in Virginia Beach. | Source

© 2013 Express10

While it should go without saying, I would like to make it clear that there are many black people who are law abiding, respectful and respected citizens. Within the upstanding black community you will find people such as philanthropists, volunteers, caregivers, hardworking employees and entrepreneurs, retirees, dedicated military (current and former), inventors, successful, well-traveled, well-educated people, and more. Those who attempt to lump all black people into the negative categories are only showing their own stupidity and ignorance of facts.

All of this having been said, it would be just as senseless as the violence at the oceanfront to ignore the fact that loitering, gunfire, fighting, public swearing, lack of self respect, and a lack of respect and consideration of others are some of the problems that are seen within the black community. In April of 2013 all of the above issues reared their ugly head under the catchall of College Beach Week and people of all races in Virginia Beach agree that these are clear problems that need to be addressed and remedied as they are not welcome here or anywhere for that matter.

A common issue that allows these types of behaviors to persist is a fear of speaking up or taking action against these types. Threats and intimidation are often deployed to prevent others from taking action but that does not work on everyone. So, when the lawless and stupid travel to places such as Virginia Beach this is what we get, Daytona Beach like behavior multiplied by seven. Where there are large groups of young people and few authority figures, these things can be seen more frequently and they can escalate to even more frightening levels.

Some of this can be attributed to a lack of one or both parents, substance abuse, lack of morals, neglect, abuse, or plain old selfishness. However, these unfortunate life experiences and choices do not make harassing others and violating common sense, or violating laws a justified activity. Many black youths are or have been raised by at least one if not two good parents but some still choose to be negative followers rather than positive leaders. Some value and exhibit thuggish or promiscuous activities, behaviors, and what appears to some to be caricatures of stereotypes. Yes, some fools prefer nonsense and lawlessness to the extreme.

King Neptune statue, the Virginia Beach oceanfront, Town Center in Virginia Beach, The Virginia Beach Convention Center, and the Cape Henry Lighthouse.
King Neptune statue, the Virginia Beach oceanfront, Town Center in Virginia Beach, The Virginia Beach Convention Center, and the Cape Henry Lighthouse. | Source

The Virginia Beach Ordeal

As a Virginian that loves the oceanfront and all the activities it (usually safely) offers, I can say that on the weekend of April 26th, 2013 there were extremely large crowds for the off season of approximately 30,000 to 40,000 mostly young black college aged kids at the Virginia Beach oceanfront. While some were college students, there also were those who are not currently, have not ever been, or will never be college students who contributed to the problems and violence.

The College Beach Week was supposedly for college students from local colleges in the Hampton Roads (7 cities) area of Virginia. However, there was a fairly large number of people who came from non-local areas of Virginia and other states such as New York, Maryland, and New Jersey. Some attendees were looking to cause trouble by bringing guns to the beach for the sole purpose of bailing their arses out of checks written by their mouths that their behinds could not otherwise cash. Others caused trouble by groping young ladies (complete strangers) that unluckily happened to be within close reach. Some started vicious fights.

Some people were attacked simply because they were present while others said or did things that escalated into fights and worse. There were many instances of people looking to fight without reason. Residents saw and smelled drug use and collected numerous articles of trash on their properties when this is not usually an issue, even during peak season which doesn't start until Memorial Day. People urinated in the streets. Various videos of the absolute nonsense that was brought to Virginia Beach by the jack leg promoters of this event can be seen on a variety of websites and newscasts such as Negative and dangerous events are not the norm and are never welcome in Virginia Beach.

During the summer, millions of tourists from all over the country and world visit Virginia Beach each year. But this alarming and dangerous situation occurred during the off season without proper notification from the promoters to the city. Some of the most popular things that visitors/tourists do on the strip are listening to live music, walking/milling about, dining, and drinking alcohol at a variety of establishments. Drinking is one of the contributing factors that set this powder keg alight. Many people can't handle alcohol and some chose to get drunk, act rowdy, and violate people and a variety of laws rather than act like young adults enjoying themselves in a remotely respectful or considerate manner. One would imagine that many of them weren't raised that way yet as young adults they chose to act this way.

During this College Beach Weekend event, the attendees with little spending money, not dissimilar from many other college aged students, ended up just walking around or loitering in front of storefronts rather than contributing to the local economy by spending money. Loitering contributed to some of the problems and in large part intimidated some businesses into closing early. Large rowdy groups of college aged kids made many locals go elsewhere for entertainment and made oceanfront residents double check the locks on all their doors and windows. Oceanfront businesses lost money because the large crowds weren't spending and ran off real spenders. One unlucky business owner received a black eye in her own establishment from a group of unruly young women who scrambled away when told that police were coming.

The Virginia Beach Seal
The Virginia Beach Seal | Source

Virginia Beach Is For The Law Abiding Of All Backgrounds

During the normal tourist season you will see a mix of ethnicities, families, singles, Americans, foreigners, and organized events occurring in what is usually a safe and popular tourist spot. The normal tourist season begins on Memorial Day and there are blowout music events that close out the normal tourist season on Labor Day weekend. Virginia Beach has millions of visitors during the summer alone so we can handle things...with some notification and planning. None of that occurred with this College Beach Week event. While there have always been some law breakers and even some scuffles here and there typically due to intoxication, there has not been anything of this nonsensical and violent magnitude since GreekFest many years ago. Locals are rightfully shocked, frightened, and angry that this occurred.

The unorganized College Beach Week event that took place in Virginia Beach is several steps in the wrong direction for many reasons. Adding to the problem is the fact that this "event" was marketed and shared through social media to thousands of people. The promoters did this to get maximum exposure for minimal cost but where they went off the rails is by not contacting any of the city officials and actually organizing the events with the city. The promoters did not foot the bill for adequate security or at least provide estimates of crowd sizes to city officials and/or police. The damages and violence that occurred as a direct result of this event and the lack of communication between the promoter and the city should never have occurred and communication should have been initiated by the promoter. Further, the costs of damages and extra police should not be borne by taxpayers who have been harmed by an invasion of many young people, some of whom have no respect for laws, for themselves, or for others.

Dawn on the sandy shore at the Virginia Beach oceanfront.
Dawn on the sandy shore at the Virginia Beach oceanfront. | Source

Blame The Promoters, Not City Officials

Many people blame the mayor and local politicians for the violence in April 2013 but they are not at fault. They cannot read minds and the promoters intentionally did not notify officials of anything. The use of social media compounded the problem and aided in growth of the crowd to thousands of people at a time of year when the businesses and the police do not expect it. Virginia Beach got caught with their pants down, but if the concerns of citizens of all backgrounds are addressed, it will not happen again.

Armed robberies, shootings, stabbings, oh my! The violence which has so far resulted in about 150 arrests with at least 70% of the arrested being young and lawless black people. Those who broke laws are at fault but the promoters should also be sought for damages because without them the lawbreakers would not have been here to begin with. Going even further, the promoters know that they were not above board and continue to actively hide their identities. The promoters' identities are cloaked in mystery, police and others do not know who organized this and calls have been going unanswered. The WhoIs Lookup simply lists the website owners' info for as unknown.

The lack of communication with city officials was likely done to avoid the fees associated with getting permits, security, and so forth. The promoters and advertisers should be sued/fined for all damages and costs arising from this once their identities are found out. Hopefully that will send the message that jack leg promoters who hope to do this sort of thing in the future will be held responsible and they will have to either work with the city or take their events elsewhere.

Tickets for the events which were held on private property were sold to students and non students alike. Events at area clubs went off without a hitch but not down at the beach where the mayhem took place. Because of the social media sharing of this "event" many people showed up contributing little to nothing to the local economy and simply loitering or actually breaking laws on top of this. These crowds were a result of promoters only interested in making maximum money without providing reasonable or maximum safety. Participants should be concerned about jack leg events for their safety. But that requires that individuals respect, value, and care for themselves now doesn't it? Shockingly, approximately half of people who came for this event and expressed their opinion on whether they would come back said they would!

F/A-18 Hornets coming in off the Atlantic Ocean in the North End area of Virginia Beach.
F/A-18 Hornets coming in off the Atlantic Ocean in the North End area of Virginia Beach. | Source

Calling A Spade A Spade

As for the people that violated the laws of common sense and laws, they conducted themselves with a mob mentality cited repeatedly in local media. And while we are on the subject of the media, every single one of the local news stations have very obviously tiptoed around describing the crowd's race or the marketing of the event towards mostly young black people. Virginia Beach locals of every color are saying this very thing, yet the media is afraid to mention race because they fear being called racist. I am all for tactfully calling it as you see it and one can see for themselves in various videos and photos that it was a mostly young black crowd, period. No, race doesn't need to be said thousands of times but the extreme amount of effort that was made to not mention race only calls more attention to the fact that the effort to be "politically correct" has gone overboard.

The town hall meeting that took place on the 1st of May began discussions and action to prevent this type of event from turning to mayhem in the future. We are lucky that no one was killed. There are a number of known and some currently unknown reasons that contributed to the violence. But action will be taken to prevent it from recurring. We have to face it, this can happen anywhere thanks to social media and the myriad of ways we can communicate instantly to ask friends and acquaintances to come and "party." The problem is that some people's definition of party is quite negative and downright dangerous and other people choose to have criminal minded "friends."

Also thanks to technology, there is talk of putting into place a system to monitor and notify police of how many people are at the oceanfront (year round) so they can respond quickly and accordingly with the appropriate number of officers. During the summer they are everywhere on beautiful horses, on foot, on bikes, in cars, and on four wheelers but they got caught off guard this time. Hopefully this type of thing will never happen again at the oceanfront. Many locals and visitors have and will continue to have many wonderful experiences at the beach and know that this city receives too much revenue from residents, businesses, tourists, and events at the oceanfront to cede it to stupid and lawless fools.


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    • Express10 profile image

      H C Palting 3 years ago from East Coast

      Completely true PeachPurple. If more people had a reasonable level of consideration or respect for themselves, our entire world would truly be a better place with less violence, crime, and nonsense in general. I think it all goes back to the parents but as one ages, their own choices regardless of their upbringing or lack of it in some cases.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 3 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      Actually, a lot of people litter the seaside because they are selfish about nature

    • Express10 profile image

      H C Palting 3 years ago from East Coast

      Thanks for partially reading, it appears you did not read the entire article. Please do so when you have more time. I go out of my way to show that city officials are not to blame, the criminals and so called event organizers are. I even called out local media too afraid to call a spade a spade. I know this hub is rather long but I blame all of the people who committed acts of violence and other criminal acts. Even the title reflects that. Now, you wake up!

    • profile image

      bb 3 years ago

      i find many facts in your article flawed. you try to blame everything on anyone but the offenders- except the blame needs to be placed squarely on the shoulders of the offenders- i guarantee i have had a harder life than 99% of most people, yet, I remain civilized. you can't drag kicking and screaming feral beings into being civilization overnight. and i for one don't have a long enough life to try fix the problem or waste the quality of my life waiting 200 thousand years for them to catch up . wake up!

    • Express10 profile image

      H C Palting 4 years ago from East Coast

      I try to be hopeful but things like this make it very hard to be positive about this. Still, I try. But nothing can be done about any problem unless there is honest discussion about it. As for Dr. King, I'd imagine these destructive behaviors would most definitely have been his ultimate nightmare.

    • getitrite profile image

      getitrite 4 years ago

      I totally agree with your assessment of the state of black youths in America. This is very distressing, and is exactly what Bill Cosby has been trying, hopelessly, to get us in the Black community to come to grips with, so that we can start implementing solutions to this cancer that has stifled the progress of blacks as a whole. This is NOT what Martin Luther King visualized. In fact, I believe it would have been his ultimate nightmare.

    • Express10 profile image

      H C Palting 4 years ago from East Coast

      Thanks so much for reading. This one is more of a rant than anything in my opinion and just that, my opinion. But it is shared by many here of all races. Just a sad and dangerous experience, but we are not going to let it get us down or stand idle to allow it to happen again.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton

      Real life is like a reality show.. so many people no matter the color of their skin wants to be part of a riveting tale.. a dark side.. one who stands up against the man.. people want to be part of the street that boils with drama.. and sometimes haunting truth.. Yeah I like how you set the tone in your news feed hub.. you get to the point and you hold back no punches.. thanks for the share :)