[private] In chapter one of this series we established that children tend to emulate the actions and behaviors of their parents or guardians. The old cliché “don’t do as I do, do as I say do” no longer has credibility. It just doesn’t work. As previously stated: most parents never really discover what they truly believe in until they begin to instruct their children.
Take note of the following: A dog once wandered to a preacher’s home, and his three sons played with it, fed it, and soon became attached to it.
It so happened that the dog had three white hairs in its tail. One day, the preacher and his sons spotted an advertisement in the city newspaper about the lost dog. The description of the stray they had taken in matched perfectly.
The minister later said, “In the presence of my three sons, we carefully separated the three white hairs and removed them from the dogs tail.”
The real owner of the dog eventually discovered where his stray pooch had gone and he came to claim him. The dog showed every sign of recognizing his owner, so the man was ready to take him away. At that point, the minister spoke up and asked; didn’t you say the dog would be known by three white hairs in its tail? The owner, unable to find the identifying feature, was forced to admit that this dog didn’t fully fit the description of his lost dog and he left, without the dog.
Years passed and the minister noted with sadness, “we kept the dog, but I lost the respect of my sons that day”. They no longer had confidence in what their father professed to be true. You may not realize it at the time but your children watch the choices you make in all areas of your life and base their opinion on your actions. Be a person of integrity – one they will admire and respect.
Today in the Bay Islands we face a parental crisis of monumental proportions. Parents, instead of striving to educate their children, are sending their school-age kids on the streets to peddle their wares, especially on cruise ship days. Many tourists evidently feel sorry for these kids and without realizing it are contributing to the delinquency of these minors. Without recognizing it, visitors to our fair island are helping to create uneducated future adult citizens that will have no alternative but to graduate from selling trinkets, to either selling their bodies or illegal drugs to survive in the future.
How do we get the message out that by donating a dollar here and a dollar there, in the long run they are not helping, but encouraging our youth to follow a life of crime, disease and poverty? Children who engage in these activities with the blessings of their irresponsible parents will eventually end up engaging in theft, prostitution, hard drugs and possibly doing hard time upon becoming adults. Without an education they face a very dismal future.
To continue on our present trend is to invite certain disaster – if our elected officials have a plan or strategy for dealing with this crisis they sure know how to keep a secret. Parents must be held accountable for the behavior of their underage children. We may not have been responsible for our heritage, but we are responsible for our future. Without deliberate and concrete action to reverse this trend, our beloved Island is heading for a turbulent and crime infested future. It takes courage to push ourselves to places that we have never been before. In order to succeed however, we must first believe that we can. Right now we are heading down the wrong path – to see it all unfold has been a nightmare. On the bright side there are brave voices speaking out against this madness, and the rewards for those who persevere far exceed the pain that usually precedes victory. [/private]