Ever so often, we have news of children who die falling off into drains; drown with their siblings at some beaches in Port Dickson; die of serious burns while playing with matches without any adults around them; die of heatstroke after being left alone in a locked vehicle under the hot sun while their mother was doing some household shopping etc etc.
Some months ago I watched a father lamenting the fact that his children had drowned at a beach while he was praying. Yea, right. He had the clarity of mind to leave his kids unattended at a beach and went praying.
It is obvious that some of us are not fit to be parents. These people forget that children are not mere by-products of sex, legal or otherwise. With kids come the responsibility. And if we are not prepared to take the responsibility of being parents seriously, or at all, we’d better not be one. It is as simple as that.
In England for example, a day after any incident resulting in a calamity to children, the authority would come a-knocking on the parents’ door. Without question they would take away the remaining children until they are sure that the parents are fit to raise their remaining children.
Over here, I remember there were calls sometime ago for a negligent parent whose child died to be punished. But of course people in authorities as well as a section of the public could be heard saying why must we compound the agony of the parents who had just lost their kid. Well, how about the kid? He died, for God’s sake.
I know the action of the welfare authorities in England may sound harsh, inhumane and unkind. However, incidents involving parental negligence in our country have seen a steady rise.
Our lackadaisical attitude towards our children’s safety can be seen every day. Yesterday alone I saw a lady walking a good 5 metres away from her 4 or 5 year old boy. The boy was of course walking in the middle of the street. The mother just walked as if nothing was happening.
Nowadays it is also of course quite trendy for some of us to drive in continental vehicles with sunroof. And scenes like the one in the picture above are quite prevalent too nowadays. If I remember correctly, last year I saw a TV3 news about a girl who was allowed by her father to do like the child in the picture in a car which was driven along a busy road in KL. Her head was stuck when the sunroof closed by itself and could not be re-opened! It made the news on TV3!
Traffic safety is our responsibility. It is not enough for all of us to just hope that the PDRM and JPJ to reduce accidents etc. We must realise that the responsibility first of all is ours to ensure traffic safety. The PDRM and JPJ are just law enforcers. If we could not be bothered with even our own safety, can we expect the PDRM and JPJ to reduce accidents?
Most importantly. children are God’s gift to us. They rely on us for almost everything until the time comes for them to look after themselves.
Do we want to fail them?