No, that is not hat we read on the front page last week, what we read was “Teens Arrested for Vandalism”, however I contend that the caption of my letter would have been more appropriate, or perhaps, even more to the point would have been, “Teen Vandals Caught, Marion County Quorum Court Arrested”, or “Arkansas State Legislature Indicted".
Given the Twilight Zone our society has degenerated into I am not at all surprised that teens commit such acts, what else is there for them to do?
When I was a teen, way back before government undertook to totally micro-manage our lives, we teens all had jobs after school and on weekends. With home work and after school jobs teens back in the stone age where I was raised did not have time to be bored and get ourselves into trouble. However there were ZERO restrictions on us being employed. We did not have to maintain any certain grade level or get permission from the school in order to be employed, and there were no minimum wage laws or child labor laws to get in our way, and neither did our parents purchase cars for us - if we wanted a car - and we all did - we had to get a job and save up money and pay for it ourselves, and maintain it also.
The high school I attended had vocational machine shop, auto shop and wood shop - we did not have time for vandalism - we were too busy learning how to be adults to engage in such childish behavior.
I don’t blame the teens - NO - I blame their parents, and the legislators for enacting child labor laws and minimum wage laws.
There were no adults bagging groceries at the super market - we teens did that and we did not get paid by the store - we worked for tips - and we better show up dressed properly, no blue genes, and we better be wearing a tie - what happened to that? Now either the cashier or another store paid adult employee does all the bagging, causing prices to be higher than if teens were still allowed to bag for tips.
When I was a teen I had as many as three part time jobs at the same time and still had time to be on the football and track teams and got straight A’s in Vocational Machine Shop - and there was no sex ed either, we were to busy learning how to be adults by doing what adults did - being responsible - earning money to pay our way - my folks required me to pay a percentage of what I earned to them, and I had to buy my own clothes too! And do chores at home, mow the lawn and tend the garden and feed the rabbits my dad was raising for pelts.
What happened to teaching/expecting teens to emulate adults?
I am glad I am now 78 - and NOT 7 or 8!
Eric Williams - Twilight Zone. Arkansas