Teaching our Young

Yesterday I was coming home on the bus after getting a chore done. We get to our stop and I and a number of other passengers start to get off.

Only to be rushed by a pack of teenagers just out of school. Kids I expect who are courteous and well behaved when supervised. But that’s when supervised—my emphasis.

Children 14, 15, even 16 years old are still children. Thoughtless, heedless, impulsive. They’re not adults and are incapable of acting like adults without an adult around to wake them up. Hell, at their age they can’t even fake it.

So I got their attention, and now aware that there were people getting off, they let us off. Once they were aware they could act responsible.

But we assume they are adults like us. We assume they have adult capabilities and adult capacities, and that they can be responsible for themselves. An attitude that gets parents arrested for providing liquor to minors. It’s an abrogation of responsibilities.

A responsibility we all have, for we know things and are capable of things the kids are not. And to be honest with you, they are our responsibility.

And the man asked, “Who then is my son?”

And the Preacher replied saying, ” Once a lad of 15 was sent for some items his father needed at work. On his way to get those items he fell in with other boys his age who counselled wicked things. Having no one there to guide him he joined his fellows in mischief.

“Upset many they did, and there were many who reviled them, who cursed them. But being heedless youth the boys continued with their acts.

“Until, that is, one man stopped our youth and asked him, ‘Are you not Michael, son of Robert the Tailor? What are you doing here with these ruffians when I know your father had a chore for you to do? For I know that my friend Robert is not into raising fools.’

“So once having chided the boy he sent the child on his way, and after a sharp word to the others he tagged along after Michael, for the purpose of keeping an eye on him.

“In time they came to the boy’s destination. By which time the two were engaged in conversation, for Michael was a smart kid and caught on quickly to what was going on around him. His father’s materials obtained Michael headed back home, promising to be responsible.

“Now who would you say was the boy’s father?”

And the man replied, “Why, the one who take responsibility for him.”

And said the Preacher, “Be you like him.

Isn’t it about time we started taking responsibility for those who can’t take responsibility?

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