I think most families know their children better than anyone else and honestly try to make thoughtful decisions about what is best for the kids. Sometimes, though, the decision they reach is so off-kilter that you can only conclude that they really should never have had children in the first place. This story from Missouri falls into that category.
It involves a fairly common parenting issue: the innocent child who needs to understand that he must be wary of strangers. How do you teach that lesson in a way that sticks? Have a serious talk where you explain the dangers and make the child promise not to go with strangers? Show the child a missing kid on a milk carton and talk about kidnapping? Watch a movie like Pinocchio that shows the potential consequences and thus powerfully reinforces the lesson that children cannot safely trust strangers? Go to a presentation by a real police officer who explains to kids in the audience that they need to be on guard on the public streets?
Nah! The Missouri family decided the best way to educate a trusting little boy was to stage his actual kidnapping. According to news reports, his aunt enlisted a co-worker who lured the child into a car, threatened him with a gun, covered his head with a jacket, bound his hands and feet, told him he would never see his family again, and took him to a basement where the aunt took off the boy’s pants and told him he could be sold into “sex slavery.” The poor kid’s mother and grandmother also were charged in the incident.
It’s hard to believe that any one person would think that was an appropriate course, much less a group of them — but these folks felt they did nothing wrong. I hate to see families broken up, but this little boy clearly would be better off in a different living arrangement. God knows how these jokers would have taught him about the birds and the bees.