Judge Richard Bray has ordered the parents of two British girls who took part in a violent street robbery to pay compensation to the victim. I can hear howls of delight throughout the land at this decision.
In general, I agree with the decision – a parent MUST do everything in their power to make sure their children behave. But it must be pointed out that this task has never been more difficult.
Never before has media and peer pressure been so pervasive as today. And when you link this to the fact that most traditional punishments are no longer acceptable, the task of parenting is far more difficult than it seems.
Yes, I agree that a parent is responsible, and when a clear case of neglect in this area arises, it is right that the parent also accepts blame. But before making this is an absolute ruling, we must remember the restrictions a parent is facing today.
© Anthony North, August 2007
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