Bad parent! Bad, bad parent!

It started — as the really obnoxious events do — innocently enough: I had just gone off-duty and have decided that I simply must have something from the grocery store on the route home. Still in uniform, I grab the item(s) required and am patiently standing in queue at the register.

In the next line over, Young Miss is crying her eyes out for God-only-knows what reason. Mother (I assume) of Little Miss sees me standing next door, so to speak, gives Little Miss’s arm a good shake, points at me and hisses, “If you don’t stop crying this instant that officer is going to arrest you and throw you in jail!”

*twitch, twitch*

You don’t want to know how much I really hate that kind of bushwa.

It’s not my job to terrify your children — either for real or by proxy.

I’ve got no problem with being the boogeyman for a twenty-five-year-old gangsta, but I’ve got a real problem with being the cause of a six-year-old’s nightmares.

It is not inconceivable to think that child may need the services of a Peace Officer sometime in the next couple of decades — equating him with the Closet Monster is not doing anyone any favours.

Sooner or later the sprogs are going to figure out that you are lying when you say the cops are going to arrest the them for crying, or not eating their green beans, or making themselves throw up, or not coming in when you call, or whatever — and then where will you be?


Laws! Laws! For God's sake, we need more laws!
CSI: Bugscuffle County

25 thoughts on “Bad parent! Bad, bad parent!”

  1. When I was a student nurse, the mother of one of my patients said to the child “If you don’t stop that right now, this nurse will give you a shot.” Then she made the mistake of turning to me and saying, “Won’t you?”

    I never lie to kids. I didn’t that day either. Mom’s jaw pretty much hit the floor.

    Then there was the day that my oldest child (about 4 at the time) declined rather forcefully to allow me to buckle him into his car seat. I pointed to a police officer nearby and said, “Do you know what that officer will do if you don’t get in your car seat?”

    Kid shakes his head, no.

    “He’s going to come over hear and say, “What’s the matter with you, lady? Don’t you care enough about your kid to make him sit in his car seat?”

    Child promptly sat in the car seat.
    I didn’t realize that the officer could hear me until I saw him snicker at the last part of that performance. I KNOW what he was expecting me to say.

  2. I’ve been in the exact same situation. A parent threatened to have me give their child a shot.

    Shoulda told the parent, “Actually Madam, since what you just said constitutes a threat, I could arrest YOU for assault.”

    Or something along those lines…

  3. Yeah, it doesn’t look too good when parents put the law up as the source of morality. Or something like that.

  4. hammer asked: Is it ok if I point to ATF agents when scaring my kids?


    That only works on kittens.


  5. “Is it ok if I point to ATF agents when scaring my kids? ;)”

    Now that’s a group that SHOULD cause them fear…

  6. Maybe that’s the source of the cop-bashers in the L&Pee forums…


  7. When I worked in a grocery store, I had a mother point to me and say something to the effect of “behave or he is going to do something.”

    The parents are chicken. They are not willing to be the bad guy and say “Behave because I said so.” They are not willing to assert their authority in the home or the family, so their kids are out of control. Then they are astonished years later when little Junior is busted selling wacky weed to his buddies or spent his evenings liberating possessions from the homes of their neighbors.

    We need another name for these people other than “parent.” Parents are supposed to parent- guide and instruct the little anklebiters in the way they should go. These people only managed to prove to the world that their reproductive organs function as designed. That isn’t being a parent.

  8. Excellent mini-story! This mentality is very evident in our society these days. What a shame.

    Sorry to scrutinize, but you’ve got a typo. “htemselves” 😉

  9. Perhaps the day when Junior is more terrified of Mami or Papi finding out than of facing a horde of zombies with a tothpic is over.

    Shame, really.

    “Fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom” is what it says in the Bible. Fear of parents is the first step.

    And, I detest child abuse, so don’t go there. Metacarpals & phalanges applied to the glutei maximi doesn’t constitute abuse. A fist in the belly does. Clear?

  10. I wonder how many parents *have* tried using the cops to scare their kids.

    That’s not how my parents raised me and my sister.

    My opinion… the police and the private citizens… we’re all citizens and we’re all in this together. We all need to be on the same page. Parents using the cops to scare their kids ain’t gonna do it.

    mustanger98 on THR

  11. I had this happen to me once in a Dairy Queen. I promptly bought the little boy an ice cream cone and gave it to him. Needless to say Mom didn’t know what to do/say then. 🙂

  12. LD,

    I’m curious if you said anything to the mother…

    BTW, I NEVER used that line. It definitely sends the wrong message to kids about LEO’s.

  13. “I had this happen to me once in a Dairy Queen. I promptly bought the little boy an ice cream cone and gave it to him. Needless to say Mom didn’t know what to do/say then. :)”

    Hey Hootie, I’d have liked to seen the look on her face. LOL

    mustanger98 on THR

  14. Well, sadly, there be an awful lot of parents that don’t ‘parent’ for many reasons from being told wrong things about being a parent to simply not knowing or caring to be. Kids are a pain in the lower regions, a huge expense, a royal pain, a inconvience to the extreme and last but not least…

    The greatest thing you can ever have in your life for in them, you live on after you have jaunted off to the happy hunting grounds.

    Kids may be all those things but, if raised proper, are the greatest blessing your going to get this side of God’s own home. Least in my humble opinion.

    Only people should be afraid of LD and his LEO breathern (or soldiers for that matter) are the critters that make it where we need em.

    Nuff said.

  15. One wonders.. to whom is the child is taught to seek help from when in danger after the uniformed officer is demonized.

  16. -We need another name for these people other than “parent.” –

    We have names for them. They even use the terms for each other. It’s pretty much a daily occurence that I’ll end up asking, “What relation is (so and so) to you?”

    “Oh, that’s my baby daddy.”

    Everytime I hear “baby daddy” or “baby momma” it makes my skin crawl.

  17. LawDog, I get that sometimes. I hate it, too. I call ’em on it, and hand out Junior Police Officer badge stickers. I’ll try to talk to the kids directly, and not give them baby talk. (I HATE baby talk, and never have understood why people do it.)

    My only exception was last month, when a van pulled over in front of the PD as I was walking out to get a witness statement. “Can you help me? This girl won’t sit down, and won’t stay buckled,” said a court-appointed foster mother.

    Black 9 year old girl in the back seat of the van. Middle seat had her 15 year old sister. Both were beautiful, and obviously scared. Foster mother and social worker (both white) were in the front seats. I spoke to the little girl. She was quiet, and clearly upset about whatever the circumstances were that had pulled her away from her family. I asked her if she would sit buckled in next to her big sister. Oh yes. Yes she would. I moved forward a seat, and asked her big sister if she would like to do so light babysitting. She smiled at the thought of being in charge of something, and nodded. I smiled hard at both of ’em, told ’em that it was going to be okay (prayed I wasn’t whistling in the dark), and moved little girl up to the mid seat. I shut the sliding door, and the foster mother thanked me repeatedly. I asked why they’d put the little girl in the back seat. “She’s been difficult,” she said.

    Okay. Maybe she was, before. Maybe it took an impartial party who happened to be in uniform to settle the issue. Maybe it took a time-out in the back of the van to make time with Big Sister look really good.

    That kind of problem-solving, I don’t mind too much. Well, considering I managed to turn a little request into a call for service that I cleared in less than 5 minutes flat.

  18. okay matt g–that’s going to make me cry. Many blessings your way for making a little ones day a little easier.

  19. Finally! I upgraded to DSL, and for the longest time, I wasn’t able to read Law Dog’s blog. Boy, that is suffering at it’s worst!!

    LD, I so agree with you on this point. I hate it when people threaten their misbehaving children with getting arrested by the police. Why don’t they learn to discipline their child themselves, and make said child obey them! No need to call in the law if your child won’t go to bed when told to. Just apply the Board of Education to the Seat of Learning. They’ll learn really quick that way.

  20. Hear, hear, Ulises from Ca. I just read an article where a representative from CA is trying to get a bill passed that declares spanking to be child abuse in CA. I don’t think so! And, I’m wondering when some of these idiots in politics are going to start passing bills making not disciplining your child, not raising your child correctly, child abuse. Lack of parenting, or absent parents are way more abusive than a judiciously applied swat on the rear.

    As a matter of fact, a 6 yo child and her family had to removed from a plane in S.W. FL due to the child being out of control. The “Little Angel” was climbing over and under the seats, hitting and kicking Mom and Dad, and screaming and crying. When the plane was delayed 15 minutes, the airline did according to procedure, and removed them from the plane. Of course, Mom and Dad and Grandpa are playing the victims, and just couldn’t figure out why the airline would remove them because their “little angel” was crying. A temper tantrum like that, which in a moving plane would be very unsafe goes WAY beyond crying. Get a grip, and quit playing the victim when someone calls you on your poor/lack of parenting skill, people!

  21. Reno, The term I have seen on the net is ‘BNP’ for Breeder-not-Parent. Of course, the reverse is PNB, but that behavior isn’t seen much in these modern times.

  22. Kinda funny thought. There was a lady at church who was totally appalled when I took my son (then age 3) out of a service where he was misbehaving – loudly – and spanked him in the ladies’ room.

    After she stormed out muttering how “SHE would never hit her child…”, and he had his ‘minute in the corner to think about what just happened and how we can keep it from happening again’, we cleaned up tears and went back into the sactuary at an appropriate time in the service.

    She glared at me for WEEKS.

    Fast forward 18 years. Her son is a high school dropout with an arrest record, currently in a halfway house. Mine is the Marine!Goth – currently deployed.

    Not saying it’s all due to being willing to swat the boy one when he needed it, but you can’t help but wonder…….

  23. My brother tells how he and a partner were having coffee at a Denny’s when the lady at the next table threatened to have her son arrested if he didn’t eat his veggies. When the officers got up to leave, my brother (6’2″) looked down at the kid and told him, “I never ate my vegetables either.”

  24. I’m a year late reading this (just found the blog in the last few days, silly me) but – I’m grown, I have grown children, but to this day, if I see a police car behind me I tense up even if I’m doing nothing wrong.

    My mother was indeed a ‘be good or the cops will get you’ parent. And I scared easily due to a combination of other things.

    So, when the officer flashed his lights at me to tell me a tail light just burned out (literally, at one light it worked, at the next it didn’t) I thought I was going to have a heart attack from the scared feeling.

    Parents should NEVER use anyone but themselves as the punisher. My kids, they fear more the phrase “Do I have to come in there?” than, ok, there’s a cop over there.

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