IT TAKES A VILLAGE It Takes A Village The young men who roam the streets in colours of blue, red and green, those who lie in ambush intent on dealing death to one of their own, those who kill one another in broad daylight in the streets in front of everybody, these scumbags are our sons and daughters. These young fellows who do no acceptable work, these scumbags are our sons. And their female companions who feed them with their flesh and show-off gaudy clothes and jewelry are our daughters. They are all our children, born and raised in our village and despite their irregular and unbecoming presence, despite their notorious ways of living, we cannot escape or disown them, because they are own. These hoodlums and gangsters were once babies, innocently clinging to their mothers” breasts. They were toddlers, awkwardly mastering their first steps. They were the pets which we cuddled and cherished and if they are now the monsters which we fear, it must be because something went very wrong between their early nurturing and their present state of obnoxiousness. Every time they carry out some act of banditry, some murderous slaughter, some other unwholesome escapade, our community engages in finger pointing, and the school, the church, the home, all take part in the blame game in our effort to find exoneration from the guilt for the horrible conduct of these once innocent babies whose mothers just a few short years ago used to parade them proudly as little angels. The finger pointing gives us a clue to what went wrong in the lives of those once innocent babies to transform them into desperadoes and hardened killers. All of the apportioners of blame are guilty of dereliction of their duties. The home is guilty of overindulging and ignoring the mandate to train up the child in the right way. The school is guilty of taking the child for granted and failing in its duty to train the children in the way a foster-parent should. The church is guilty of not having taken its mission seriously and not seeking the erring ones and rescuing them from the mire of waywardness. The government is also guilty of failing to enact the kind of laws which would save the youths from themselves and the community from them. All have sinned and come short. It takes a village to raise a child and the whole village has failed. Those of us in the village called St. Kitts and Nevis can dissociate ourselves from the social mess in which our society finds itself. We cannot disown our own and these odious criminals hardly out of puberty are our own children, begotten from our bowels. If we can come to that realization, that the young fools who terrorize us are our own creations, we the whole village would take the necessary steps to raise them better. It takes a village to raise a child.
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