SIMMONS: It’s time for adults to step up, take responsibility

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Is it still considered bad form to talk politics during a social gathering?

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What’s the matter with you people, you people out there who blame a nightclub, neighborhood or gun or other inanimate object for violence?

It should be clear by now what — or rather who — is the problem.

We are the problem.

We are not holding up our end of the bargain to keep children and young people in check.

We go forth and multiply, as we should, but then start washing our hands of our offspring once they no longer need Pampers or can figure out how to operate a microwave oven on their own.

We tend to weeds in our gardens but leave human beings to tend to themselves and fend on their own.

And look what that has wrought just in the past few days.

A teenage nephew of mine was shot during an apparent robbery on Monday evening, when he should have been in the house doing homework.

Thirteen people were injured in the wee hours of Monday when gunshots sprayed humans, as well as trees and other stationary objects outside Tyler House, an eight-story subsidized-housing building within walking distance of the U.S. Capitol.

It’s a good thing none of the victims suffered life-ending injuries because authorities have turned their attention from the humans and mistakenly begun wagging their fingers at such political and economic targets as nearby nightclubs, which they threaten to close, and murky shades of gentrification.

In Chicago, a 6-month-old infant was shot five times Monday morning while her father was changing her diaper in the front seat of their minivan. The baby girl, Jonylah Watkins, died Tuesday. Her dad, who remains hospitalized with his own gunshot wounds, was the apparent target and the shooting has “strong gang overtones,” according to Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy.

“What the hell have we become?” the Rev. Michael Pfleger of Chicago’s St. Sabina Catholic Church posted on Facebook.

Big Mama would say we have become a nation of people who sit back and wait:

For someone else, anyone else, to admonish our children who are flunking out of school, joining gangs, becoming loners and “setting it off” when things don’t go their way (like the young Newtown, Conn., gunman);

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About the Author
Deborah Simmons

Deborah Simmons

Award-winning opinion writer Deborah Simmons is a senior correspondent who reports on City Hall and writes about education, culture, sports and family-related topics. Mrs. Simmons has worked at several newspapers, and since joining The Washington Times in 1985, has served as editorial-page editor and features editor and on the metro desk. She has taught copy editing at the University of ...

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