Friday Food For Thought #7

The conviction of two Steubenville Ohio high school football players charged with raping an intoxicated young woman was big news in the USA this week. If you would like to read a well written article about this trial, click here.
This incident sickens me – for Trent Mays and Ma’lik Richmond to assault the young woman and then brag about it over social networking sites is criminal. The 1 and 2 year sentences in a youth facility are lenient in my opinion.
There is something else about this situation that bothers me. One of the witnesses – Evan Westlake testified about being with the young men that evening, and actually took the keys away from Trent Mayes because “he was too drunk to drive.” Later that evening Evan walked in on Trent and Ma’lik violating the unconscious girl – and did nothing to stop it, because in his words “it wasn’t violent“. As a parent – this whole scenario distresses me. Having a daughter – you hope this never happens to any young woman, but you also expect that if your child walked in on such a situation, that they would have the strength of character to find their voice and step in to assist the victim. As I said in my last post – we try to give our children as much guidance as we possibly can, such as never drinking and driving. Are we falling short? Children need clearly defined rules and consequences. I have always said – there is no such thing as a bad kid, just bad parents, and I believe this (more than once, I have had to look in the mirror and remind myself of this statement). Parents play a lead role in shaping the person that their child becomes. At the sentencing, Ma’lik Richmond’s father got up to address the court and admitted the guilt was partially his as an absent parent – that he was never there for his son.
I wonder how Evan Westlake’s parents feel?

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