For 16 years the Weekender has been published in Houston County.  I’ve always intended it to be light reading about a new country boy wannabe to put a smile on the faces of folks.  I love to pick on politicians and get folks to reflect on issues affecting our lives. 

I must confess that sometimes I like to stir the pot a little. As a former Marine I’m greatly concerned about our security and the future of our country.  I believe that we can only be destroyed from within when our people lose the desire to fight for what we have.  I’m an elected Justice of the Peace who worries about the lack of respect for our laws and institutions especially by our youth.  At the same time I love those who serve in the military and try to protect our country and values. 

 I’ve been in the Criminal Justice field since 1970 and my degree is in that discipline.  When you quit listening to politicians and “experts” and start listening to the law abiding public you begin to learn the real issues.  When we talk about inner city problems or disrespectful youth, gangs, etc. a continuing theme leaps forward.  Over the years, minority parents, poor parents and those without good legal representation have been lead to believe that any discipline of their children will land them in trouble with Child Protective Services. 

That’s right folks, many people are afraid to discipline their children for fear of prosecution.  Personally, I believe the “butt” was created to “warm up” a child during episodes of disrespect at home.  That’s where it starts.  Kids have figured it out. They can insult and disrespect Mom and Dad, teachers, and all authority figures because those folks are afraid to discipline the little trolls.  Spare the rod, spoil the child. 

 Certainly, a few adults abuse children. Laws and those poor folks at CPS are faced with protecting the victims.  However, most parents fear prosecution because the laws always are created to protect us from the abuses of a few.  We all get punished because of a few bad apples. 

I believe we should hold local town halls with CPS representatives present so parents can find out firsthand how they can legally discipline their children without being charged and arrested.  I don’t think folks really want some elected official who may or may not have children telling them how to discipline their kids.  I mean, should you really have to worry about going to jail if you spank your kid at Walmart? 

 Let me say that I have read and re-read this column and I’m not pleased with it. I can only hope that we all agree that our young need discipline and they need to respect the law and parents should be able to correct their children’s bad behavior.

I believe that we need to get together right here in Houston County and decide how to achieve that.  May God continue to bless us and help us!    theweekender@live.com