Superior Court Judge Verda Colvin participated in the “Consider the Consequences” intervention program which helps at risks youth in Georgia get back on the right path. A video of Colvin lecturing the teens has gone viral as she mixed tough love with the hard realities of life in jail if the participants continued to make the wrong decisions.
“Listen to me; the way you’re going, you will go to jail or you will end up in this body bag” said the judge as she unrolled a white body bag for the kids to see. “The only way someone will know you are in here is by this tag with your name on it.”
“Stop acting like you’re trash” she bluntly added.
She went on to share that there’s no excuse for the students who ranged in age from 9 through 17, not to get their education. She shared that even if their parents can’t afford to send them to college, they could go to school for free if they have good grades. She also encouraged those who may not be interested in college to at least pick up a skill and a trade so that they could be productive members of society.
“I am sick and tired of seeing people who look like you and I (black) come in my courtroom, and I have to sentence them to prison,” said Colvin.
The participants spent eight hours in jail and ended their day with Colvin’s tough but motivational speech which she ended by encouraging the students to tap into their gifts and know that they have a purpose to fulfill which doesn’t include a life behind bars.
“And I don’t want you to come to my courtroom and I have to sentence you as an adult, at the age of 17. I don’t want that. I don’t want to experience that myself and I don’t want you all to experience that…You are special. And you are uniquely made and nobody else can do what you’re supposed to do in this world. Nobody else! And if you don’t do it, we won’t have it.”