When looking at the pitfalls of growing up in our society, it's easy to feel despair over the future of today's children. Hardly a day passes without depressing reminders of the pervasiveness of drugs, the alarming percentage of teen pregnancies or the various inadequacies of the American educational system.
In writing about these social problems in the past, we consistently have tried to make the point that no single group bears responsibility for dealing with any of these issues, but rather the community as a whole must play a role in confronting each one. Young people should be bombarded with the message: We care about you; we understand what you're going through; we want to use our experience to help.
Recent days have witnessed several examples of the community extending a hand to its youth and saying just that. They include:
- "Education Sunday," an attempt by the San Diego Unified School District and the ministers of many black churches in the city to involve parents in their children's education. The program included asking parents to sign pledges to provide an atmosphere for learning in their homes by, among other things, seeing that their children have a quiet place to study and encouraging them to do their homework every day.