RANT OF THE WEEK: Poor Parenting and the Stephentown 296

It has been quite some time since I’ve had a topic I wanted to rant about on my site. Well, I should amend that statement…..it’s been quite some time since I’ve had a topic I COULD rant about on my site.  Yes, this is my blog, which means I can write about whatever I want. However, in good taste, I do have some established rules (You can read about those rules here in more detail).  In a nutshell, I won’t write about romantic relationships (good or bad), no religion, and absolutely no politics. This proves to be very difficult, as I am a big fan of politics  and have very heated opinions, especially lately with the whole government shutdown. If you are a friend of mine in the real world, chances are that you have had a discussion with me regarding these topics at some point, so you probably know my stance on many issues.

One thing that is guaranteed to fire me up in under sixty seconds is listening to someone talk with a sense of entitlement and a lack of accountability. I have a big issue with this, and I, unfortunately, have started to notice how the majority of the younger population seems to feel  they are entitled to everything. They blame others, point their fingers for everything, and think nothing they do has a consequence attached. In my opinion, this is ruining society in so many ways, but I won’t hop on my soapbox to discuss the government and my feelings on their involvement with this. Instead I will jump on my soapbox and hammer at the most obvious problem when it comes to entitlement: Poor Parenting.

I am a very fortunate person….I grew up with two amazing parents who are still married to this day. Both were stern in their own ways, yet supportive, but above all, always held us accountable. I’ve said it before, and I will say it again, I was an absolute handful growing up, especially in my teens. I was mouthy and pushed the envelope, and sometimes I made really bad decisions (okay, I may still do these things, but in a more mature way). Never did I feel a sense of entitlement. I got a job when I was 16 and developed a solid work ethic…I knew from an early age that nothing would be handed to me unless I earned it. I got in trouble…I got grounded…privileges were revoked. Was I upset about this? You betchabygollywow I was! But you know what? I knew it was MY fault…that I shouldn’t have made those mistakes. My parents were amazing because they were able to discipline us in a way where we saw the lesson in the punishment. When I got in trouble, my parents didn’t go after other people and blame them….they blamed ME, as they should have.

What is the point of this? The point is right now there are 296 parents in Albany, NY that I wish had read the same parenting handbook my parents did. Let me back up….

Have you heard of the Stephentown 300? Due to the fact that I broke up with cable and have been extremely busy, I’ve missed some things in the news, so perhaps this story slipped by you as well. Let me bring you up to speed. Earlier in September 300 teens ( a few were in their early twenties) broke into a vacation home belonging to ex NFL player Brian Holloway. They proceeded to party, do drugs, urinate all over the interior, smash out windows, ruin the walls with graffiti, and even broke a memorial tribute to a stillborn baby…..all totaling about $20,000 in damage. The best part? They all took pictures…posting them on facebook, instagram, twitter…even some Youtube videos for the whole world to see while laughing and bragging about the crimes they had committed.

If you were the owner of this house, what would you do? I will tell you what I would have done…. I wouldn’t have thought twice about pressing charges against every since person involved, and I would’ve gone after the highest charges I could have, too.

What did Brian Holloway do? He collected all of the pictures and posted them on a website he created called “Help me Save 300”. On the website, he identified who was in the house based on the photos and videos the kids themselves had put on the world wide web, and asked  that those involved in the destruction show up on a clean up date to help him clean up the mess they had made. He wouldn’t press charges, rather he wanted them to have a sense of accountability for their actions and actually learn a lesson.

Of the 300 people involved, how many showed up to help Mr. Holloway????

ONE. One freaking person out of 300!!!!!!!!!! Three additional people came forward after that, but only one showed up to clean up the mess they had made. Only four parents felt the need to hold their child accountable?

Now here is where I get really angry. The parents of these 296 destructive little jerks are now trying to sue Brian Holloway….they are mad the kids’ faces are online and their reputations are being ruined. Really? Are you kidding me, parents????? If I had ever gone to a party and committed some of these acts, I can assure you, my parents would not be sticking up for me. I can guarantee they would’ve made me march right over to Brian Holloway himself, apologize and help him clean up the mess. I think back to a time when I was little and thought it would be a cool idea to cut up a bunch of library books. Really, I just wanted to play paper dolls, and I liked some of the pictures. When I returned them, my mother was called and immediately took me down there to apologize to everyone at the library. She also made me pay the library for the damages in $1 bills so I could see how much money I wasted. Was I embarrassed? Yes. Is that a great example of accountability? Absolutely. So why are these 296 kids not being held accountable for their actions? POOR PARENTING.

Now, I may not have children of my own yet, so some of you may think I don’t have a right to discuss how to properly parent. This goes much deeper than parenting though….this goes into being a good person and doing what is right. I don’t need to have kids to know the difference between right and wrong. I also don’t need them to know the importance of accountability. What is wrong with people?

Brian Holloway has since pressed charges against those involved (not the ones who came forward), but he has gained a substantial amount of negative press for his actions. Here is a man who tried to do the right thing…who tried to teach an impressionable kid a lesson that may further shape their life and redirect their moral compass. Instead of being a good example, he has the parents of heathens taking legal action against him.

There’s a lot of information online about the Stephentown 300 (as the media calls it), and you can also check out Holloway’s site by clicking here. I know not everyone can be blessed with two parents who genuinely are invested in their child becoming a good person, but everyone does have the choice to be accountable for actions. Mom & Dad, thanks for not caring about whether or not you were the “cool” parents or my best friend growing up and instead raising me to be a good, quality person. I wish everyone could have parents like you guys.

Speaking of accountability……

Don’t even get me started on this…I could rant for days on this woman!

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