For IPAD/IPOD users:

I’m tired.

Tired of getting dispatched on breaking news, rolling up to schools in the middle of the day, sometimes in the middle of the night.

Tired of getting there and the place is either on lockdown or has been emptied out.

Tired of standing in front of the building wondering how many people are hurt or even dead this time.

Tired of seeing the same sad, mournful look on the faces of people who work or live near or attend the school where someone or multiple people have been injured or killed inside of all places; the place where everyone is supposed to be safe, a school.

But most of all you know what I’m tired of hearing, and I’m just being honest, I’m tired of hearing the same refrain from just about everyone who knew the person or the persons accused of these horrific acts.

You’ve heard it: “Not such and such, he was QUIET AND KEPT TO HIMSELF.”

Do you know how many times I’ve heard that?

It makes me wonder if we have it all wrong. If that loud person that we get so annoyed with for being so outspoken and animated at work is actually the more mentally healthy person.

If the person we resent or go to HR for, for speaking their minds is the person we should actually be commending.

At least that person lets his feelings out, gets it off his or her chest. They don’t keep all those emotions bottled up inside and then explode like a hot, shaken soft drink when the cap is pulled.

It makes me wonder again what parents are doing that they don’t know that their own kid is on a fast track to violence, murder, suicide, or prison.

Where is the disconnect?

Whenever I’ve had the unfortunate opportunity to interview the parents of some of the young men accused of school violence (and it’s mostly young men) I’m often shocked when they say they didn’t know that “James had assault rifles under his bed, I didn’t know”; or that “Adam had 9 millimeters in his closet, I didn’t know”; or that “Phillip would disappear for hours in the middle of the night.”

How could you not know that? Or is it that you don’t want to know? I’m not sure.

But I do know that when I was a child, there were no locks on my bedroom doors. And if anything was under my bed, let alone a gun, by the time I got home from school, it would be sitting on the kitchen counter with my mom standing over it saying, “What the hell is this?”

And I’d better have a good explanation for it, and it had better been a replica for a school play or I wouldn’t be able to walk for a week because I would have gotten my you know what whooped.

I’m not advocating violence but in my day you got a whooping and some time in, there was no such thing as a time out.

You got time in the kitchen doing the dishes, time in the garage cleaning it out, time in the yard mowing the grass, time in old lady Johnson’s flower beds pulling her weeds, time in front of your parents learning discipline and what you shouldn’t do.

Time out?

That meant you got a break to go in your room and contemplate more bad behavior. Time in, is what my generation really hated and for the most part, we turned out really well.

If there were school shootings or massacres, they were few and far between because we respected our elders and especially our teachers and our fellow students.

And for the most part, kids don’t do that these days. A kid will curse you out if you dare say something to them, they’ll call their parents and their parents will curse you out for even having the nerve to correct their precious little angels.

I hate to keep harping on parental responsibility but just this week in the span of two days, two young men are accused of killing a beloved teacher; elders who had their best interest at heart.

And the parents may not be directly responsible, I’m not saying that, but I’m going to say it to you again: plan on having a child or don’t have one.

Plan on spending time with them or don’t have one.

Plan on not being able to do most of the things you want to do or don’t have one. It’s as simple as that.

Because if you have one you are responsible for them until they are grown and sometimes even after.

I’ll leave you with this:

Take off the blinders. Every juvenile attorney or police officer I’ve ever spoken to says the first thing a parent says when their child is accused, even in the face of overwhelming evidence against their child is: “Not my baby, my baby ‘(insert name here)’ is a good child. He or she wouldn’t hurt anybody.”

Many of those good children are in jail, prison, some on death row, for a number of reasons. But ask them or any psychologist how those children got there. The answer is lack of parental supervision, bad parenting.

Stop the cycle; be present and responsible for the lives you bring into the world. Or those lives just might end up taking the lives of others.

20 thoughts on “DON LEMON: ‘Be Present and Responsible for the Lives You Bring Into the World’

  1. Lionel L. on said:

    The only thing worst than being a bad parent is not having the guts to be a parent at all. Some people confuse their ability to manage careers with their ability to manage children. Some of you will only give birth to careers because it takes real character to raise children; and if you don’t believe me, count the number of family members who frequent your household on an annual basis Mr. & Mrs. Exclusive…

  2. Jiggy5 on said:

    This is the product of the welfare society that we have embraced for generations now. We have sold out lock, stock, and barrel to the Democrats, and they know it.

    • Jiggy,
      No matter your desire to blame the Democrats for the world’s problems, it will not work, as it is not the fault of just one party but BOTH!
      If you knew your history, you would KNOW that your statement bears no weight.

  3. As Don Lemon said, what happened to the good old days of an old fashioned butt whipping? My parents did not spare any of my siblings or me when we misbehaved. We had MANY guns along with many pressures and stresses, but none of us thought about taking any of my Dad’s MANY guns.
    Moons ago, my parents owned a fish-n-tackle store but was bought out by Urban Renewal. They held multiple sales before its closing but was not able to sale many of the guns, rifles and knives so they brought them home. Some may have considered my parents careless and/or terrible parents, but they had a plethora of guns that were NEVER locked in a safe or closet. Instead, there were guns under their bed, behind the door of their bedroom, some in their UNLOCKED closet etc. But again, we were more intimidated of my parent’s wrath than a stinking gun! My parents did not beat us, but whipped us when we failed to do what we KNEW what we were supposed to do.
    As Don Lemon said, we had chores! We had chores on top of chores! (We used to say, “Chores galore!”) Don brought back memories when he said time out in the yard and pulling neighbor’s weeds! (We thought that was just wrong!…making us pull our neighbor’s weeds!) We mopped our hardwood floors and afterwards, got on our hands and knees to wax them. We had several dishwashers, which included my sisters and me. We had to dust ALL the furniture; cleaning the house from top to bottom, bottom to top and worked from sunup till sundown. There was no such thing as emancipation proclamation in our house. However, that was then and this is now.
    Now, parents back their children when they misbehave and want to beat you down if you try to help them.
    Not too long ago, my friend was threatened with confinement if she spanked her child.
    Inoe S said it best:
    “There is not much hope and time in a hopeless situation.”

  4. Inoe Sen on said:

    There is not much hope and time in a hopeless situation. We have learned the effective pattern of reacting to violence. That is usually when it is too late. There is not much to talk about on this topic. The only options are to become involved and detour the violence away from children when they go out to study for jobs. Basically it is all for a job. We know the current job situation. We know what excuses are given for why you are not employed . We know the degree of discrimination involved. So many of us are waging our lives over basically nothing other than fighting over differences. These differences since long ignored have made way to our classrooms. Five years from now, if you only talk about what is happening the murders will increase, schools will close, students will continue to disappear. Just as doing nothing about the job situation other than complaining, the problem is still there. Many of us are educated enough to know exactly what is happening, but that is the sector that will face vast discrimination and objection. It is that sector that will have to work twice as hard to make up for those that physically do nothing whether they can or cannot. Doing nothing, and complaining about our problems has gotten us this far. Our children are the future, else we burden ourselves to do it all on our own. Then you are abandoned, tired and old with the risk of all your investment towards life easily being taken away. It is certainly a horrible situation. These are the times when you must actually defend your platform. These are the times when there is no option to stand still, and you must be responsible and caring. It’s a life and death situation. Else all that you have worked for and invested in will not matter. There is a great chance this can turn around. There is a great chance this will only get worse!

  5. Christina on said:

    I agree with Don Lemon 100%, but i have to ask, as a mother of a 13 year old boy who is going through all of the hormonal changes and has also tried to commit suicide, where do you go to get help? I have tried to get him the help he needs, through counseling, youth services, big brother, boys scouts and the list goes on and on, but nothing can seem to reach him. I am a single mom who is trying very hard to not allow my son to become one of the kids mentioned in your article but I have no clue where to go. When I ask for help, I keep being told that unless your son has a juvenile record there is nothing that can be done to help him. Does this make any sense to any of you? Just my two cents.

    • Christina: So did you try the Big Brother Responsible Black Male Adult Mentor route? If so did the (mentor, and your son) stay the route, or did one of them drop out of the effort to keep the kid on the right path?

      • Christina on said:

        Joy his big brother left the program, because he is a full time student and he works, so time was not on his side. Thanks for you comments and I am still trying to find some way to help my son.

      • 55th st silverbacks on said:


    • Christina,
      I am sorry to read your story and wish I knew where you could turn.
      You said that your child does not have a juvenile record but could not help but wonder if you could turn him over to the State citing incorrigibility.
      My prayers are with you and yours!

      • Christina on said:, I was raised in the foster system in Chicago so handing him over to the State is the last thing I want to do. My son just needs some kind of motivation, but the State is not the answer, I don’t want to abandon him, just get him help.

      • Christina on said:, I don’t think you were being heartless or thoughtless, you don’t know my story but I just wanted to point that out. We live in a society that when things get to hard we can just throw them away, and this includes our kids. I don’t want to be like that, because I know what that feels like.

  6. Fran H. on said:

    I just hope that the people who really need to read Lemon’s commentary read it and take his suggestions, because they are simple and effective guidlines to RAISE a child. Or take some parenting classes. Just please stop letting your undisciplined, disrespectful, ignorant, children loose on society. Yeah, I said it!!

  7. taylormi on said:

    Amen. Well said and needs to be said during a Pre-Family Planning Course or Talk before any thought of Bringing a life into this world in the Human Race. Peace.

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