Saturday, August 8, 2009

Attack of the Angry Parent

Normally I am not one to step in while someone is disciplining their child - unless it is a clear case of abuse. Today, at the grocery store, a middle-aged white woman came through the doors with five bi-racial children under the age of ten. She immediately began yelling at them, jerked one out of his stroller and placed him in the middle of the cart. When the oldest one didn't move fast enough for her, she pushed the cart at him as if to it him with it. This child was at eye level with the cart and had he not jerked his head - the handle would have caught him in the face. When she went to do it again - I stepped in, got between her and the child and quietly explained to her to knock it off. She said nothing, but the children looked relieved. During this whole episode, people were commenting loudly about her behavior, but NO ONE stepped in. People commented on her race on the children's race as if it mattered, but NO ONE intervened.

I don't know the real story behind what happened in this video, but...damn. Every parent has had that moment where their little angel has not only gotten on their last nerve, but jumped on it, shredded it, and waved it around saying, "I dare ya to smack me!" Yeah, we've all had that moment where we checked ourselves, and walked away. No one is perfect, spanking and/or yelling, take your pick - most people have had that moment that you wish you could take back.

Question for most people is: who decides when that line between discipline and abuse has been crossed. You say: Children Services. I say: Get the hell outta here. Due to my profession I am what is known as a mandatory reporter. Now, I'm going to be careful here because thanks to random friendings on FB, the door to my blog was opened before I had blocked certain people from viewing it. That said, there have been times where cases were NOT opened and it left me SMH. The neglect and/or abuse was so obvious a blind person could have reported having seen the shit and still given an accurate account. Nothing was done. Not a damn thing. What do you do? Keep reporting it. Don't let it go because a child's life may depend on it.

The lady in the video? Maybe she was just having a bad day as her defenders say. Or maybe this video is the best thing that ever happened to this kid. Too many people laugh at this and other crazy shit on YouTube like it's funny or part of one's culture. Bullshit. Yes, black people, I am talking to you. Then you wonder why are community is in the hot ass mess that it's in. Oh, but isn't it funny? No plantation Negroes who write that being hit with a belt, switch, extension cord did them a lot of good - it is not.

h/t Undercover Black Man


  1. I'm never quite sure that having a bad day gives anyone an excuse to be abusive to anyone regardless who they are. People need to be reminded or shown just how far over the line they have have crossed before it ever gets to Child Services or any other government agency because by that time, it's already too late.

  2. ^ I agree. I think the line parents have to be aware of is this: Am I reacting to a my child's age appropriate behavior in a way that age appropriate for me. Personally, I have moments where I take a time-out and call another mom and ask,"Am I nuts or is my child on some other ish that I'm unaware of?"

    With my baby I have to take into account some of the things she experienced before I left her father. That said, she can't have free reign to act a damn fool either. So, it's a mix for me - she's acting all of three and testing her boundries or she's acting out things she was exposed to.

    Either way, if I keep my cool, take a minute, let her know that I love her, while clearly indicating that she is the child and I am the parent - things work out. And she's a great little girl to begin with!