Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Teen values gone awry.


I have been without net connection for the past days, and yeah, it sucks big time! So I have to hurry writing this because it seems I get the connection only an hour a day...darn!

I was dismayed to hear another teen brutality from the American evening news the other night. This time it’s a teenage girl that was gang raped inside the school campus. But what was even more appalling is the fact that there might be many who may have witnessed the said crime, but instead of calling the police, they took a video of it! For the nth time I had raised the question - What’s happening to our youth?!

This is very disturbing because to bring life to a world that seems to have taken a path of total self destruction doesn’t seem to appeal anymore. With the behavior of our youths today, there seems no hope for future youth in this day and age. I am honestly curious as to why any sane adult would consciously decide to bring an innocent life into this mess of a world!

My telescopic view of the world today consisted of estranged teenagers whose own parents are battling drug or alcohol abuse, physical abuse, divorce, and who has little or no coping skills to manage their own life. I see a vicious cycle spiraling out of control contributing to gang violence, increased sexually active teens, drug abuse and erosion of moral.

The truth is we live in a world that thrives on power and money. Time equals money, money equals time. No wonder our society is pressured to live life in the fast lane whereby priorities that used to be relational (family, friends, and church) have been traded in to meet materialistic needs instead. And with the increased value on time and money, we see a decrease in family commitment and family values. The very reason why we see our youth of today show more defiance to authority and assert self independence at earlier ages.

But I don’t lose hope, as I have seen how Amy and Steven are bringing up their kids. Kudos for Tracey for having brought up responsible children. So are Jen, Mimi, Jenni, Jann, Joey and Darla, and even Kirst! And I am sure there are a lot more good parents out there. Although it is impossible to control what the rest of society is doing, as parents they have taken initiative to take responsibility of teaching values that prioritize family and community. But more importantly they teach it by modeling what these values look like.

Yes, if we want our children to value caring for others, for standing up for oneself in the midst of peer pressure or to value him or herself, as parents we need to have the same priorities. In other words we have to practice being helpful to others by giving up that party to help a neighbor move in, or trade in the season football tickets to watch our children school play. We need to show that our children are our priority, not just by paying them off, but by being there for them.

Although as parents we can not control outside influences, we can at least control our availability. And although we can not control the values our society may portray, we can control how we portray our own value. Not only are we securing our children we are also illustrating a value that they will hopefully incorporate in their own lives.

Yes, there is hope...if only parents will take action.

9 comments:

Tracey said...

You have to wonder what the hell is the world coming to! Even in our small market town there's now a drugs problem, and kids causing trouble that's alcohol fueled. If I see a gang of yobs, I can't ignore them, I tell them in no uncertain terms what I think. (Yes I have got a big gob) My son says that when he was at school, one of the kids got caught with drugs, when asked where he got them from, he said his mother! say no more.

Angry American said...

There's three basic reasons this kind of thing happens, at least where america is concerned.

A) People are chicken sh*t

B) People are chicken sh*t

C) People don't give a sh*t

Reason "A" is based on fear of getting hurt. Ok fair enough. But, what if it was a member of your family? You realy want people standing around doing nothing, not even calling the cops?

Reason "B" is based on fear of getting sued and/or arrested, which is an unfortunate, disgusting reallity here.

Reason "C" has a lot to do with the fact that too many people, especially kids, in america just don't give a damn about anything or anybody.

To kids, violence has become a form of entertainment perfect for youtube. It's more important for them to be the first to upload it than to do anything about it.

The person(s) who were there, especially those who recorded this and the murder of the teen honor student, should be arrested as accomplaces for not calling 911.

living_with_ba said...

I am always shocked at the stories like this, I remember being told as a teen, that if I were ever to be raped to shout "fire!" as then people would come to help me, whereas if I shouted "rape!" I would most likely be ignored..shows you what kind of world we live in, it's disgusting!

Chicken Boys said...

When I was in high school (not too long ago) we could go hunting and then go to school. We could leave our hunting rifles and weapons in the car with no problem. Now, it's so dangerous that if you even have a toy gun you get suspended. It's quite sad really.

Sid Brechin said...

The way the interviewed officer was speaking he is either extremely intelligent or he has intelligence training of military grade. You can tell he wants to say more but knows one wrong word could end up letting one or more of the suspects off. You don't hear mention of other students taping things. He is probably hoping students who did will try to sell the "footage" to the media which providing he made no mention of the possiblility of such footage means they could be arrested for a variety of other crimes. Endangerment, conspiracy before after and during the fact and attempting to profit from criminal enterprise.
You can't tell someone to behave like that ( the cop ) they have to take someone with extreme self control and then train it to where there is no way he will make a mistake.
It is my guess that as long as 2 years down the line a number of the type of students Odette describes will end up behind bars because he made sure they don't have a legal out. for example they could sell the footage to the media because the police already had such footage.
This is the type of officer can tear up a lawyer on the stand. He was talking the way I was very careful to when potential legal issues were involved.
Ray can tell you police who talk to the media expecting them to become hero's of the hour do more to let criminals walk then $1000 and hour lawyers

Mimi said...

These are troubling times. It is important for children to have rules, love from family and friends,have respect for the law, have respect for parents and authority figures, and be taught food morals and values. Unfortunately, parents pass on disrespect for the law to their children, do not teach them respect or good morals. Children learn from their parents,but the parents are too busy making money, trying to be young and cool, and partying. The only love some children get is in the form of money, a new video game, or a material object. Hug your children, keep them close, set boundaries, and be a good role model. It is amazing that not one person "snuck" away to call 911. I feel so bad for the poor rape victim and her family. What a tragedy!

Angry American said...

Sid is exactally right. Our police are trained in what we call "cop speak". If you've ever watched an episode of "Sanford and Son" when the two regular police characters were there, the black cop always had to translate for them in ghetto slang. lol

They've come up with a universal, fool proof way of handling media questions, even for the police chief: "I can't discuss details at this time".

BTW Sid. I don't know about Canada but, that officer is the kind of cop brothas and sistas here in the ghetto hate more than ANYTHING a police force can throw at them: a "white black man". It's because he speaks proper english. I guess you could say he's crossed over to the "white" side of "the force".

NEO-CONDUIT said...

Great post! I agree on much of what you have said. Such a sad video:( disgusting.

They are finding now many kids out of control are from nice, middle class families, with no social issues such as drugs or drinking.
Yes the more disadvantaged a family is the more likely behavioural issues will pop up.

It is so hard being a parent in the west as many of our powers are taken away now. Everything is so P.C.
Even in Saudi Arabia the balance has tipped. I was talking a while back to a Saudi on how things differed from when they were in High School.
He said in his day the teachers were tough you didn't want to put a foot wrong or the punishment was harsh. In his final years he saw a change, the teachers lost their powers of control, now when kids are told off they are more likely to punch their teacher.

I was tough on my son who has mental illness and social issues, to find he authorities didn't back up the parents who were taking a tough stance. I found out that it was mainly middle class older youths who graffiti and damage properties, not the young disadvantaged as I and everyone else believed. I'm glad my two younger children are doing so well.

I have found since working that the comparison between two schools one a higher social level than the other. Everyone was worried the kids at the lower economic school with major social issues would be a nightmare to work in.
The opposite was true, these kids from the said school have been fantastic, well behaved and more open to work with than the middle class school.

My point is sometimes the parents arent always to blame. Children can have mental illness and behaviour difficulties, or a genetic predisposition to difficulties in spite of the best parenting in the world.

However our passive role we are taking in Western countries is ensuring children are bought up in a society with no boundaries, kids are given far to much power, not enough discipline, or initiative.

Anonymous said...

Stories like that on rape always make me cry as it does bring back some awful memories. Back in 2002 I was raped by two blokes who had spiked my drink (they were friends of mine.)

The police said there was insufficient evidence to prosecute so they got away with it all. And because the police did nothing no one believed me that it had happened (coz of course - If it had - the police would have done something wouldn't they??? everyone said)

For the next two years at uni - no one spoke to me and rooms fell silent as i entered them.

The whole experience was traumatic itself, but the reaction of my friends and the judicial system in britain contributed to all the trauma - making it worse - somehow.

Society is a total mess. It is scary how people can get away with such evil crimes. Rape is a particularly evil crime as it not only violates your body but it violates your mind and soul too.

I am now an active member of a rape crisis counseling group where we help young women come forwards and paint and do crafts etc. that help with the associated anger and other destructive feelings whilst getting them involved in group activities so they can rebuild confidence and learn how to interact with other people again as it can be very hard forming trusting relationships after a rape. They also get group and individual counseling as and when they feel they want to or need to talk things through.

Unfortunately though - the local council has said that they can't afford to give us much funds so we struggle to reach most people affected and can only help a minority of girls in comparison to all those affected with abuse of this kind. That is the unfortunate truth about the world we live in, we are currently doing fund raisers and asking local businesses to get involved and have had some success but its very hard to get them to see what a good service we have here in sheffield and how we cannot let it fall away! Its madness how the council fund all sorts of different societies for pets and sports but not for essential services like ours - I personally think it is disgusting but given the reaction that survivors of rape get from the police and courts i suppose it shouldn't be that surprising should it!!?

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