I was abused when I was a kid in the Soviet Union. I have written about it in the past. Gangs of kids would team up to beat on me, or worse ignore me, leaving me out of playground games, forcing me to watch wistfully from a swing while they built forts and played together.
When Danny was born, I promised myself I would raise him to be a kind individual. I taught him to take care of animals. He was gentle and beautiful. He loved everyone. We would discuss various situations, ostracized kids, making friends, etc. He was pretty lonely when he first started high school, and it broke my heart when he told me on one of his first days, “maybe tomorrow someone will talk to the short, redheaded kid” with such complete innocence and earnestness!
And I was so proud when I read the following on his Twitter feed a couple of years ago!
Kids can be pretty horrible. They’re feral. They travel in packs, because they feel more powerful that way. When you think about it, they don’t have a whole lot control. Adults tell them what to do – many times without giving them reasons they can understand. So they compensate by exerting what control they can over others.
Kids are like sharks. They can smell weakness, and they exploit it, because it gives them the sense of power they lack in their lives. And unless taught otherwise, they’re mean, awful bastards.
Sometimes the awfulness is extreme.
A little boy, who has trouble communicating and hearing, was set in fire by another kid.
Set. On. Fire.
More than 20 percent of Kayden’s body was burned, from his ears to his belly button.
[The victim’s aunt Kelly] Mack said the 10-year-old was playing in a field with two other children when one boy doused him with gasoline and another set him on fire off Wallace Street in Kerrville on Sunday afternoon. The floor of a shed also burned.
When I read this, I felt physically ill.
What kind of parents raise such a monster? A sociopath who sets another child – a child with special needs – a child who is different and weaker – on fire!
A monster who tries to destroy someone different to assert its power and control!
I realize bad seeds do happen. I realize that despite parents’ best efforts, sometimes badly wired beasts appear.
But I would submit that’s rare. Most of the time parents just don’t raise their kids. They toss them into the system and think that schools, teachers, nannies, whatever will take care of them. They abdicate their parental responsibility, because they have lives, or they have careers, or they feel the kids have enough guidance in school.
Look, I know in this economy many times both parents have to work. I was a single parent for several years after my divorce. I worked two jobs. I get it.
But never – NOT ONCE – did I not insist on dinner together, on conversations with my kids, on teachable moments! Not once did I not supplement what they learned in school with different views or alternate information!
Yeah, it was hard. I averaged maybe 4-5 hours of sleep in those days. I worked my second job on the weekends. But I knew that involvement in my kids’ lives meant they would grow to be decent human beings, and there was no way I would abdicate that responsibility! I owed them that much.
What kind of neglect… what kind of complete lack of involvement and discipline… what kind of lack of awareness of the child who is growing up in your own home could cause them to set another human being on fire merely for being different, or perceived weaker? What kind of environment allows this “Lord of the Flies” miscreant to flourish?
A couple of seasons ago, “The Walking Dead” aired an episode in which one of the characters had to kill a young girl who had killed her own sister and was about to murder a baby – not because she was evil, but because she didn’t understand death and what it meant.
Some people went apeshit, claiming that the show had gone too far in its disturbing brutality – that killing a child in what essentially was capital punishment was too much.
But you know what? I wrote then, as I do now, that sometimes neutralizing the threat is necessary – regardless of what kind of package that threat comes in. That’s reality, boys and girls. Sometimes those threats come in cute little packages – PACKAGES THAT SET OTHER CHILDREN ON FIRE!
Sometimes these bad seeds need to be taken out of society, because it’s too risky to allow them to live among us.
Go ahead, and be upset at my advocating the killing of a child. Mommy and daddy should have thought about perhaps ingraining in their spawn a respect for life, a kindness toward others, a sympathy for others’ pain, and an acknowledgment that abusing and harming those who are different and who are weaker than they are is the height of evil. They should have taught that little troglodyte human decency.
But they failed, and now society has to deal with the monster they created.
Neutralize the sociopath. Get rid of it so it can never harm another child again! It wouldn’t be murder. Protecting society against murderous sociopaths such as this is our duty.