As someone with a long history of partying, I must say that in all my years of mind-altering madness I never broke into another man’s house, stole his belongings and then refused to take responsibility for my actions. There is a reason why I fly thousands of miles away to engage in behavior that my liver and my soul lecture me about daily: I’m a gentlemen. I have some semblance of honor left in the innermost fiber of my being. I had parents who actually cared about me.
The same can not be said of many of the teenagers who ransacked former NFL star Brian Holloway’s house in late September:
About 300 teenagers are realizing they picked the wrong place to throw a wild party after breaking into a former NFL player’s second home and causing more than $20,000 in damage.
Brian Holloway, a former offensive tackle for the New England Patriots, was in Tampa, Florida, over Labor Day weekend when his son told him he was receiving tweets about a party at their home in Stephentown, New York, Holloway said. …
Holloway says parents threatened him [with legal action] after he posted pictures of their children online in an attempt to hold them accountable.
“Parents are upset with me when their child was in my house … taking drugs, using roofies and drinking, and they’re going to be upset with me?” he said in disbelief.
This week, Holloway invited the teens to be accountable and help clean up his home in preparation for a military personnel picnic planned for this weekend that up to 1,000 people are expected to attend.
Fifty volunteers showed up to clean up the home, but only one person who was there actually attended the party.
Brian Holloway had over $20,000 of damage done to his house, and then had to suffer the indignity of seeing the perpetrators brag about it online. He then set up a website, “Help Me Save 300,” to try and change the trajectory of disturbed kids who did it. As a result, the parents have threatened him with legal action. It’s It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World — and I’m not talking about a movie from the 1960′s.
To borrow a phrase from President Obama’s former pastor: America’s “chickens! … are coming home … to ROOST!”
It is one thing if you want to destroy your own life. If you want to turn your kidneys and liver into something resembling tomato paste, that’s fine — provided you do it on your own time and in ways that do not burden your neighbor. But it is not kosher to steal or destroy another man’s property because you’re a selfish kid whose parents never said no to him.
If you are the kind of parent who sets your kid up for failure in life, do it through the soft bigotry of low expectations. If you want your kid to be a goof or a societal skid mark in America’s underpants, turn a blind eye to their irresponsible behavior and give in to their temper tantrums as an adolescent — but at least teach them right from wrong.
I think the “Hobo with a Shotgun” said it best:
“I hate to tell you this, but if you grow up here you’re more likely to wind up selling your bodies on the streets or shooting dope from dirty needles in a bus stop. And if you’re successful, you’ll make money selling junk to crackheads. You won’t think twice about killing someone’s wife because you won’t even know it was wrong in the first place. Maybe … you’ll end up like me — a hobo with a shotgun!”
Civilization is always one generation away from extinction, and the actions (or inaction) of many of the parents connected with the Brian Holloway party kids demonstrate that point better than a cult movie ever could.
We are raising a generation of kids who were never taught right from wrong, and so they look at us with their eyes rolls backed in their head and laugh when someone tries to hold them responsible for their actions. America’s day of reckoning is on its way, and it can’t come soon enough.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a date in the 4th Dimension. I plan on getting there through ways that don’t involve vandalism, theft or any other kind of behavior that would hurt my fellow man. Again, that’s because I’m sane and my parents taught me right from wrong.