Parents on the struggle of having 'the talk' with kids and what it means to be black in US

Aziza Young blames "America" for her 16-year-old son fearing he won't make it to adulthood.
8:08 | 01/17/18

Coming up in the next {{countdown}} {{countdownlbl}}

Coming up next:



Skip to this video now

Now Playing:


Related Extras
Related Videos
Video Transcript
Transcript for Parents on the struggle of having 'the talk' with kids and what it means to be black in US
grow up far too soon. Sometimes it's an unrelenting stream of stories. Growing outrage over deadly shooting of two black men. Police officers open fire on an unarmed football player. Cellphone video seen around the world. But men unarmed shot dead by police drawing attention to what's been called the talk. It's opportunity to ask questions. The uncomfortable questions. The need for a meaning of the and national discussion has inspired workshops like this run by national organization of black law enforcement. The goal is to have the conversation by allowing families to talk directly to law enforcement. We have major issues not being touched right now. It's century-old conversation, how to navigate complicated color-conscious nation when you are black. . My mom would have the talk with me all the time. America hates you. For 19-year-old Winston Harris it is more than a TV episode it is his life. He watched horrified as this video of his friend shot and killed by a police officer. Police don't tell me Jesus he's gone. In his friend's face Winston sees his own. As each shot rang out I could feel it, not like actually each time just bang, bang, bang, I could just feel it. Cross town another teen, 16-year-old. It hurts because my life just seems like it is nothing. In the United States. Turning to the modern teens diary Facebook, a great post. Committee can't even go outside without being scared. Bhoej in middle class neighborhoods, American dream still pal able but living in a country they will be judged by the color of their skin not the content of their clarkt. Whcharacter. Raising a black child in America at times can be frightening. Her best efforts of shielding him don't make her son immune to reality. Honestly I am a little scared unsettling. I am only 15 years old. I fear I'm possibly going to die before I even turn 18. What do you think of some of the unique burdens of being a parent to a black child, particularly a black boy. Safety. I always have to worry about his safety. I believe he's prejudged before people get to know him because it's how it's programmed in society. I know it's a view this is a pa paranowia. The pain and suffering of African-American historically is not really engender broad-sweeping empathy. I think what racism has done is it has stripped African-American people from being beings to being things. He says kd stemming from lives lost on video. 32-year-old kimmed in the car with his girlfriend and daughter. There was Elton sterling. And rice, too many others, faces who may not have made the news in these cases many of the officer who's killed them went free without a conviction. It's like well, whose next. Ej's father Mike knows there's only so much he can control. You feel powerless. Like you can't do anything about it. He feels his life isn't valued. It's your fault America. It pisses me off. Conversations she says families must have. Topic of teaching kids how to talk to cops. The white manager said no why do I have to talk to my kid S about that. I'm like exactly why should I have to talk to my son about that. The double standard in the United States sickens me. It really does. I wish you knew how it felt to feel like your child is an endangered species, literally. Mike isn't alone. We've been inundated with requests for this program. They heard about the one event in philly, a workshop hosted by black police officers. We're here in the thousands over 2,000 times in the last few years. Law enforcement attempting to tackle these questions through interactive demonstrations. They set up a routine traffic stop. Ma'am will you roll down the window excuse me sir I'm talking to the driver. But many felt it was scenario. That was great but I'm concerned about the person losing their life because a cop said I was afraid. Someone can drive away without losing their lives that's a good thing that kbaent the anywhere attive. This can't be the norm. We have major issues not touched right now. You're talking about issues that I look just like you. I'm a mother. I've been a police officer for 27 years. You want something to be changed be part of it. You said even people who carry the badge had they get pulled over get nervous that's systemic issue this is em broiling black communities all over the country. There's still so much left unsaid but the workshop perhaps a small step towards understanding. I don't want to be what it is and then not do anything. I don't like people that do that. I'm going to talk about it I'm going to be about it. I just gained more understanding of being a cop. Just one of the lessons Winston is taking with him in his new chapter as a freshman at temple university. When I was his age going off to college my mom and I would have lots of conversation S about staying alive. Going through high school and middle school never had that conversation with them. It's not until he entered college and hearing all of the reports and knowing the type of environment he was coming into which he wasn't used to. He's not like a shift person. So the conversation shifted preparing him to come to college. Wihe worried cop might look problem. They just look wrong they will stop scand where been going. You ever been stop bid the police. No I hope I never get stopped either. Still Winston eager to step out and be a man. You date sng. No. I used to tell him I'm your girlfriend until your 35. Ha, ha. In north philly E jrks wants the opportunity to just be a kid. I should be thinking about I'm going to go to this party. Not a cop will shoot me in the head. When I was your age I thought a lot about dieing as a young black man and was obsessed by that notion. I try to stay positive but what's going to happen tomorrow. The questions and burdens of men far older than him. I want to stay alive so I can be there for them. This is not a new conversation in America. But rarely in our rich and sometimes rocky history has it felt more urgent. For "Nightline," I'm Byron Pitts in Philadelphia.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

{"duration":"8:08","description":"Aziza Young blames \"America\" for her 16-year-old son fearing he won't make it to adulthood.","mediaType":"default","section":"ABCNews/Nightline","id":"52398246","title":"Parents on the struggle of having 'the talk' with kids and what it means to be black in US","url":"/Nightline/video/parents-struggle-talk-kids-means-black-us-52398246"}