Last week, an 18-year-old woman, a senior in high school, drove a car filled with four of her co-conspirators on the streets of suburbia. She was chasing after a minivan containing two people, one of whom was apparently her boyfriend. Or "ex-boyfriend," I should say. The sunroof of her car was open and a boy, hiding his face and mouth with two strategically placed bandanas, was standing up through it, firing a rifle at the minivan. At four o'clock in the afternoon. Down neighborhood streets. On a sunny day with kids out and about.
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Some of those children's parents, surely, must be more like me than not. A 13-year-old girl knocked up. A handful of 15-year-olds and 17-year-olds and an 18-year-old trying to commit murder. Could any of those parents anticipated these kinds of things would happen to their kids? Maybe. But maybe some of them did everything "right," whatever the hell that is anymore. And a foolish act, in the heat of the moment, ruins their kids' lives, the dreams they had, the people they could have been.
If I've come to any realization in the past couple of weeks, it's that it's time to up the ante in what specifically Pete and I need to pound into our kids' heads. I mean, seriously, I thought I'd have to discourage TPing people's homes. I never imagined I'd have to discourage shooting up the streets.