Sometimes there are stores that just totally bowl you over. This is one of them. Read that first.
This story was all over the news a few days ago and luckily, it had a happy ending. Is it really a happy ending though?
I came from a below-modest upbringing and saw violence and lived with a single mother so I don’t buy the argument that your environment determines your identity. YOU choose your identity. You choose your own path at some point and as a parent you have a responsibility to begin clearing the way for your children.
I also think folks need to be careful: the attention this article paid to the decrepit house (flat screen television aside) moseys a bit into dangerous territory. The objective is to make sure that the child is loved and cared for, not whether his surroundings meet society’s acceptance. Once you start down that path more than just socio-economic factors are at risk for being used as a litmus test against you. However, a child in the home where the mother publishes photos of herself doing drugs (possibly in said home), having enough money with which to play and purchase clothes (what the mother was doing when the child was taken) but not have the money for the gas needed to drive to retrieve the child? That’s irresponsibility. That’s not demonstrating proper care for a child and that is the focus.
Read the story and the comments; some comments on either side of the issue are ridiculous at times but there’s some honesty in others.
I’m curious as to what the paper’s editor thought upon seeing the digital galley prior to print. While I’m the last person on earth with the desire defend the paper considering how they treated me a few years ago, I don’t think they set out to show a stereotype; rather, I think they captured an honest moment and isn’t that what journalism is? Booking a hotel room and taking the family out of their environment so as not to offend the limousine liberals’ delicate sensibilities would be dishonest, the opposite of journalism, and inherently quasi-racist by itself. If the family didn’t have a problem with the photo, caption, or story, why should anyone else? If you say because they may be unaware, then it almost sounds like you are validating the very stereotype you allege is being foisted upon this family by saying that the people featured are too uneducated to realize.
The takeaway: That precious child is the ultimate victim and, as one commenter put it “Stupidity is not bound by race, gender, age or socioeconomic status, & unfortunately, the kids are usually the ones left to pay the price for their parent/s decisions.”