Today’s Editorial for June 10: Time to hold parents responsible

It’s midnight.

Do you know where your pre-teen is?

Hopefully he or she isn’t taking part in a street dance in downtown George Town.

The video shooting a couple of weeks ago of a young girls and men simulating sex at a street dance outside one of the tonier shops downtown on YouTube has caused so much uproar it has reached the hallowed halls of the Legislative Assembly.

There Leader of Opposition Mr. McKeeva Bush has been successful in getting the Government to pass a motion to take steps to establish and enforce a policy that restricts anyone younger than 18 from being subject to public displays and participation in lewd, indecent, unacceptable and dangerous behaviour, conduct or activities in clubs and other public places and events.

Thank you, Mr. Bush and government, for taking a stance on this issue.

Those of us who saw the video found it not only disgusting, but disturbing.

We found out in Finance Committee that at least two of the young girls on the video go to government schools. That means they are Caymanians, so those who have been pointing the finger of blame at Jamaicans need to stop.

We’ve been told by some of our younger readers that what was displayed on the video isn’t anything new to the Cayman Islands; that it goes on in some of the clubs on a nightly basis.

There has been talk of a national identification system. Maybe it’s time to implement one so that the producers of street dances and workers at bars and restaurants can ask for identification to ensure those participating in the activity or drinking are of age.

But at the end of the day, it’s not government’s responsibility to police our children.

It is the job of the parents.

If the children in that video – and one was only 11 years old – have parents who don’t give a whit about where they are and what they are doing, we feel sorry for the kids and their futures, or lack of one.

How can a parent of an 11-year-old girl not know where the child is or, worse yet, not even care?

It’s beyond our comprehension.

Our lawmakers can do much in the way of passing regulations and laws to keep our society functioning.

But what they can’t legislate is parental responsibility.

There are laws on the books concerning child abuse and neglect.

We think it’s time those laws are enforced when it comes to children attending lewd dancing and underage drinking.

We must start holding parents responsible.

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