"Me nuh kno how the yout get so"
Where to start? Three stories converge in my mind tonight and they are all to do with young people. I think I'm getting old now because I'm starting to think like my parents did when it comes to the younger generations or maybe this new parenting thing has got a brother a bit more sensitive about this subject. Well maybe its a bit of both but lets see if I can string together something coherent here tonight.
Story 1: A 12 year old girl at an all ages party in the club district in Toronto got stabbed last Friday night or rather Saturday morning at around 2 am.
First off the girl who stabbed her was also around 12 years old which is rather disturbing but then I still remember the Boot Camp Click concert I went to back in '97 when this 14-15 old girl tried to come inside with a 9 inch blade in her bag. I mean one of them Crocodile Dundee knives ya kno! Like she name Shylock and she coming to cut a pound a flesh from a fella. And the Police actually didn't take it from her when they found it, they found it rather entertaining actually and told her to go leave it in the car she came in and then they would let her in. (Now of course if that was me with the knife I would be on the ground with about 8 bullets in my tail but that's another story) I remember this clearly cause I was right behind her in line to get in the club. Unbelievable!
But I digress. The bigger story is why is your 12 year old daughter at a club at 2 in the morning? I'm sorry I know they grow up really quickly these days but at 2 in the morning any decent little girl should be in their bed sleeping and any responsible parents should make sure that this is what is happening. 12 is too old to be going to big man area for all age fetes. All age fetes mean that she is probably partying with some kids who are up to maybe 20 year old or more, that just not right.
For the parent, its not like say right after school where you cant watch them and maybe they can get into trouble. Its after midnight you should know where your kids are and it should just be one place. Home! No way should this kid be downtown in an area where quite a number of big people have been injured in the last few months. That's just ridiculous.
Story 2: So I'm standing at the subway station waiting for a bus this evening around 7 pm. I'm just hanging around in my own zone not really taking in the hustle of everyone trying to get to their destinations. Then this short 16-17 year old dude and his shorter girlfriend in her Catholic school mini skirt walk over to where I was standing and basically invade my space. Its not like the station was crowded but for some reason he stood too close to me and she was on his arm like a yo-yo and swung directly into my path so I moved away to give them space. Fine! I didn't move too far though, its evening, its been a long day, I'm standing near to my bus bay and I just cant be bothered with these yout anyway.
All of a sudden and remember they are in touching distance of me, like I wouldn't even have to stretch out to reach them, the yout and the young girl start a kissing frenzy and this as I mentioned was basically very close to me. I'm trying not to look but they are between me and where my bus arrives and I damn sure aint moving cause I was there first and I aint looking no where else cause I looking for my bus but still its a little disturbing.
Then I really take a look at the girl, cause I'm thinking to myself what sort of training or broughtupsy she have to be kissing big man in subway station in front of so many people. Yea she's short but that don't mean anything, her skirt is as usual with these uniformed girls shorter than they should be for school , but when I look at her face I'm seeing 13 year old maybe 14 at the most. Young should be innocent girl.
I'm sorry but your 13-14 year old daughter should not be making out wid any man in public just so. These yout no have shame at all then. That nuh right!
Story 3: Well they say you shouldn't close the barn door after the horse had bolted but I guess someone has to try something. A father was in court in Barbados on Monday for chaining his 15 year old son outside in the back yard as discipline. Apparently the son was on drugs, ranting and raving and disobeyed some instruction from the dad. He left home and when the dad found him he brought him home and chained him up in the back yard by his foot. Somebody like they was having Roots flashbacks or something so. Pretty extreme but then again at least that sounds better to me than the parents who complain that their kids are beating them or they are afraid of their kids.
Ok so I cant rightly condone the father's methods (at least not in a public forum) and I believe its a case of bad parenting not solely because of the chaining but because the behavior of the child was allowed to deteriorate to the point where the father would think that chaining was the only viable option left. That shows that things were definitely out of hand if drastic measures like that were necessary because according to the Grandmother they tried everything previously so maybe this was just a last ditch effort to straighten out the youth.
As an aside apparently somehow it seemed to have worked though since the boy is reported as saying "It's all my fault." "I learnt something from it Â that I ain't want to go to prison."
Still the part of the story that popped off the page more than the rest was the reported statements of the presiding Judge to the father: "If you want to talk about tough love, all you had to do was let him get a week at Dodds."(Dodds being the juvenile detention centre in Barbados). I'm sorry but lets see if my ONLY choices are chain child in back yard or let him get a criminal record and go to jail with a bunch of deviant characters who will teach him God knows what and do God knows who to him I think I'm choosing back yard. The worst thing that could happen to him in the back yard is that a centipede bite him or the rain fall and he catch pneumonia while the worst thing that can happen in jail is well you know what Idon'tt even want to encourage those thoughts here.
Actually even if I was the child in question and they ask which punishment I would prefer I think I would choose back yard over jail.
To be clear though if in such a position as a parent chainingwouldn'tt be my first choice or second or third either but its got to be better than prison. "Prison a no bed a roses." I personally think if tough love is to be shared out its better not to come in an institution with bars on it.
So there you have my stories; stabbing, kissing, chaining. What do they have in common? Just signs of the times I guess, signs of the times.