PlazaJen: The Blog

Riding the Bike with One Pedal.

Am I Going to Have to Change to “FlashMobJen”?

WTF, riots on the Plaza?

Parents?! Hel-loooooo. It’s 11:30 on a Saturday night, do you know where your children are?

I’m utterly disgusted with the state of parenting, consequences, and the lack of personal responsibility.  I love how we’re talking about trying to move teachers to a merit-pay basis – sure! Who doesn’t want their compensation tied to a crumbling infrastructure you have no control over? There are students who don’t care about their MAP scores because – well, nobody at HOME cares about their MAP scores. They’re perfectly content to race through, guessing, writing “I Don’t Know”, and basically turning in a half-assed job. How do you motivate that attitude to care? You can’t beat them – and if mom and dad don’t think getting an education’s very important, well, they’re not going to pass along any desire to excel to the kids.

So back to these roving mobs of ‘kiddos’. It’s scary. Mobs of anyone, any age, any size, any color, with limited wisdom and little care for consequences? Scare the shit out of me.  GroupThink is one of my greatest fears in life, and I was raised to question it and shun it with every fiber of my being.  And because the attitude towards authority, elders, the merchants, the police was so flagrantly insubordinate, so disrespectful, I go straight to smackdown. I think there should be a curfew. I think if these kids break the curfew? The parents should get fined. If the parents can’t pay the fine, or want an alternative to the fine? Then they should be court-ordered to parenting classes.  This is what would happen if you were caught drunk-driving, or beating your wife, or other things we deem  wrong and in need of correcting. Why not parenting? Is the American Family oh-so-sacred? We shouldn’t tell another person how to parent their child? Well, no, I don’t think it’s my place to tell the mother with her screaming infant that it would be better for everyone in the restaurant if she took her child outside. But we do tell mothers who shake their babies not to do it. And we do make people take classes to learn how to drive a car, and hey, even a test! But none of that’s necessary if you want to bring a child into the world, and you think it’s ok to put your needs first and not stay home  on a Saturday night and make sure your kid isn’t hoofing off to some part of town to participate in a riot, or a strong-armed robbery, or breaking someone’s jaw, or ruining some girl’s prom night.  All we do in this country is sweep up. We build higher-security prisons, instead of teaching disadvantaged mothers that they can break the cycle, they can raise their child to get an education, how to help give them tools to a better life. Instead, we throw a little money at them, teaching them “the system” will always take care of them, when in fact, it won’t. Don’t get me wrong, I’m the biggest advocate for a helping society. I believe those who are fortunate should help people who are less-so. But I don’t believe in handouts, nor do I believe in something-for-nothing.

arrrrgh I could rant on and on. I just HATE the fact we don’t just turn the worst parts of town into places like the Harlem Children’s Zone. Make being a part of that desirable. Make being a good parent, make being a productive member of society, make being a good student the desirable goals in life. Instead, we’ll just throw up new prison walls, drain a strained court system even further, and add more police to the streets on a Saturday night. Maybe bring in the National Guard. Turn our streets into a new kind of war zone. Freedom, my ass.

P.S. if we bring in the Nat’l Guard, my friend Beth would like them to spend their days fixing potholes. kthxbai.

2 Comments

  1. Of course my civil liberties son piped in that I was all wrong on what happened….this of course was based on conversations he had, not based on video or the police report. SOOOOOOO, after reading and watching his comment was well I just won’t go down there. That is the problem…! I did tell him, for now, I would prefer him to hang elsewhere, but he did agree a curfew was a great idea. He actually is not a street hanger, he is a shopper…hahaha!!

  2. Well I agree with you, it’s largely parents and many of them don’t instill a sense of responsiblity. The danger of “group think” is frightening.

    I also understand that text messaging may have played a part in this – organizing a huge number of kids to get together at one place and time to cause havoc.

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