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A Pledge to Prevent Out-of-Control Kids

December 07, 1986

In Sue Rusche's column of Sept. 30 titled "Out-of-Control Kids: Who's to Blame?" she implied very mildly that parents are responsible for their children's behavior. She does this by restating "The Safe Home Pledge," which says that parents should make sure that their own children and their friends are not allowed to have drugs or alcohol in the home. I saw nothing in the pledge which said that the parents also were not allowed to consume drugs or alcohol. It sort of reminded me of the way things were done 50 years ago, when it was all right for adults to drink and smoke but not OK for the kids.

Lets face the facts. The problem isn't access to tobacco, alcohol and drugs. The problem is conditions which lead kids to indulge in some form of escape.

I saw nothing in the pledge that said that parents should provide constant love and attention to their children.

I saw nothing in the pledge that said that parents must respect and trust their children at all times.

I saw nothing in the pledge that said that all children had the inherent right to be themselves.

I saw nothing in the pledge that said that children are not to be their parents' slaves.

I saw nothing in the pledge that said that parents must never commit physical, mental or emotional abuse against their children.

I saw nothing in the pledge that said that parents should provide all the opportunities possible so their children could rise to their potential.

I saw nothing in the pledge that said that parents would make their children their No. 1 priority.

Anger and boredom are the two prime ingredients that cause kids to do themselves in by either drugs, alcohol, or suicide. If parents provided their children with a loving and secure environment, I guarantee that all their problems would disappear. As A. S. Neill from Summerhill once said, "There are no problem children, only problem parents."

BENNY WASSERMAN

La Palma

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