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Parents must be parents
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We are seeing more crimes committed by young people than ever in our history. And in many cases, these are not petty crimes; they’re felonies that will follow children for the rest of their lives.

We are sometimes seeing almost total disrespect for any type of authority among even the youngest children, especially in schools.

The zero-tolerance programs adopted by schools to combat this problem are, as far as we are concerned, ineffective. These programs treat every issue as black-or-white; they do not see a gray area. Though adults in authority should have the right to make decisions about children in their charge, a one-rule-fits-all approach has not worked.

What is happening? The No. 1 problem, as far as we are concerned, is the one-parent family structure that is now prevalent in our society. This issue has been addressed in many different ways by people who are more expert than we are.

And there is another problem in many homes: Sometimes, loving parents simply read too many books that instruct them to raise their children as their equals.

Last week, we read an interesting piece in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution by well-known child psychologist John Rosemond. It was called, "Why arguing with your children is worthless."

Rosemond pointed out that parents should never get on the same level as their children, and that they don’t owe a child a detailed explanation for every action taken in dealing with that child.

Rosemond also said this: When it comes to discipline, parents must follow through.

We are sure that most of you remember the old refrain "because I told you so." It seems that was not such a bad answer after all.

It is not easy being a parent, but the very future of our country depends on parents taking the proper responsibility and raising children who respect authority and other people.

Unless parents do step up, the moral morass we are in right now will only deepen, and our children’s future will be bleak.