Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Youtube Beatings and Teen Disrepect

I've heard many stories like this one lately. Between the Internet rumor mill and the videoed beatings, you sometimes wonder if kids having access to the Internet does more harm than good.

When we lived in our last house, we had two neighbors who each had a teenage daughter. The two teens (and their mothers) had been friends for years, but when the girls got to the age where they started Internet chatting and gossiping, they became bitter enemies, and it caused quite a rift between the parents as well. There were threats of violence (via Internet) and all kinds of mischief going on.

One day I was mowing the lawn and happened to glance down the street to see one of the girls with a bunch of friends throwing stones at the house of the other teen and yelling in effort to coax her out of the house (they knew she was home alone). I chased them off and made sure the parents knew what had transpired while they were away. It put me in a weird spot because I was friends with both of them.

The violence that occurred in this latest video was pretty severe:
The sheriff says the victim was first beaten unconscious in a bedroom. When she awoke, she was on a couch in the living room, where the screaming and beatings continued.

"It is disgusting that the attackers find it funny and want to post something on the Internet showing someone nearly beaten to death," says the victim's mother.

Sheriff Judd is calling it one of the most disturbing videos he has seen in a long time and he hopes all those arrested will be tried as adults. They face charges ranging from felony battery, false imprisonment to kidnapping. The sheriff says the attackers "were relentless."

What's even worse is that the attackers seemed to show no remorse whatsoever:

Even though those involved could face prison time, Judd says the teens showed no remorse after their arrests.

"When they were in a holding cell, they were all laughing," Judd says. "One of the teens arrested, who is a cheerleader, asked, 'Does this mean I'm going to miss cheerleading practice tomorrow?' The others were cutting up and said, 'It looks like we won't be going to the beach this weekend.'"

Really sad.

The problem with the Internet, as most of us in this debate are all too aware of, is that we say things that we would never say to someone in person. I can imagine how kids might tear each other up on-line making it all that much harder to live with each other in the real world.

Parents certainly have to share the blame for their child's lack of respect for others. So many parents seem to blame their child's poor behavior on their peers or teachers rather than consider whether their kid is actually the problem.

And, then we've had the ultra liberal wackos telling us for years not to hurt our poor child's feelings by laying into them when they screw up. Or, how about the "no-spanking" bill being introduced in California? Good grief...discipline your child and end up in jail.

Of course, some of the blame can be cast upon the schools as well. Discipline there is not what it used to be, though that's probably due to the ultra liberals as well.

The parents of the daughter who was on the receiving end of the beating were on the news this morning, and the girl's Father mentioned his concern for our students and the sad fact that prayer and religion has been ripped from the halls of education. The moral fiber is gone.

Oh, and here's something just nifty keen that one school is doing for prom this year...they're distributing handy dandy "prom bags" complete with a supply of condoms for the evening's affair.

Have we lost our ever loving minds? Truly, that is the #1 stupidest thing I have *ever* heard of. "Hey kids, here's a treat bag of condoms for the prom. We didn't raise enough cash this year to rent out hotel rooms for y'all so you wouldn't have to be so uncomfortable screwing your date in the back seat of your car, but next year, we're going to try to at least reserve enough rooms for the seniors!!"

Simply insane...

My oldest becomes a teen next Friday. I'm sure we've probably screwed him up royally over the past 13 years...it's difficult being a parent and knowing exactly how to best raise your children, but at least both of my boys show respect for their peers and their elders.......so far anyway.