We all have stories about how terrible our parents were. They did this and that or failed at that and the other thing.
When we are young (under 30), this and that and the other thing are monumental infractions for which are parents will never be forgiven. As we age, this and that and the other thing fall into perspective and we often realize that our parents weren't that mean after all and that we were lucky they were looking out for us.
This is not to say that all parents are good parents and all parental decisions are good decisions.
I agonize over some of the decisions I make for my child.
I don't want to be a shitbag father. As my child grows to hate the things I've said and done, and then grows to appreciate and/or accept the things I've done, I hope that my parenting keeps my out of the shitbag category.
What makes a parent a shitbag parents?
I'm certain we all have some different criteria: physically, sexually, or verbally abusive parents might fall into that category. Irresponsible, neglectful parents might, too. Parents who marry and divorce and marry and divorce and drag their kids through a string of households could be considered in this way, too.
One group of parents that I think likely falls outside of the shitbag category is a couple who works hard together through thick and thin, teaching their children survival techniques and life lessons.
I am confident that there are few of us who are perfect parents.
One family that has been in the news recently is a couple who have worked hard all their adult lives, have had their ups and downs, have lived in safer and more affluent neighborhoods than many of their peers, and have not been under investigation for being horrible parents.
The mother is a "well-respected" program coordinator at the Miami-Dade Housing Authority, where she has worked for 23 years; and the father father is a truck driver.
After their 17-year-old son was shot dead in cold blood in a neighborhood that was supposed to be 'safe' and the murderer was not charged with a crime, they went public with their story.
The legal authorities eventually brought charges against the murderer, but I am not alone in thinking that this man - no matter how guilty - will not be convicted of a crime. The dead boy was 'black' and the murderer is 'white.' This pretty-much stacks the deck against the victim and his family.
Why would anyone think that race matters in this case?
I mean, we've come a long way.
Our government is open about it's disdain for racism and unequal application of the law.
Or is it?
An employee of the government discussing the family of the victim, and the socio-economic vagaries of present-day America, had this to say:
The state seeks reelection again, truth aside. I and my coworkers could rewrite the book on whether our urban youths are victims of racist profiling or products of their failed, sh*tbag, ignorant, pathetic, welfare dependent excuses for parents, but like Mrs. Corey, we speak only the truth. They're just misunderstood little church going angels and the ghetto hoodie look doesn't have anything to do with why people wonder if they're about to get jacked by a thug.
The public employee who offered that profound, sophisticated and in-depth analysis of urban America is Captain Brian Beckmann, of Miami-Dade Fire Rescue.
When confronted about his remarks, he said:
I am a private citizen and have the same right to freely express an opinion on any subject that anyone else does. I chose not to embellish or alter the facts as your employers chose to do so.
Yes, he couches his hatred, racism and violent language in his Constitutional rights as a private citizen. This is what all criminals and social retards, racists and bigots of every stripe use to defend their stupidity.
Perhaps Capt. Beckmann is not a racist or a bigot. That is possible and I am willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. If his statements were not rooted in racism or bigotry, then he is just plain stupid. Only a stupid person would say that stuff.
Should a person that stupid be a captain in a municipal organization?
If the person isn't stupid, but is just a flaming bigot, should that person be a captain in a municipal organization.
Yes, Capt. Beckmann, you are a private citizen who has the right to say anything you choose - you can even yell FIRE in a crowded theater. What happens right after we yell FIRE in a crowded theater is often no pleasant. I hope what you experience after exercising your First Amendment rights to refer to hard-working, dedicated, upstanding black parents as "shitbags" is similar to the experience you would have by using your Constitutional right to yell FIRE in a crowded theater.
Oh, and by the way, Capt. Beckmann, those shitbags pay your salary!
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