Thursday, September 12, 2013


To my son Tommy,

There is currently a youth curfew in Baltimore city.  I believe it is 11 pm on weekdays and midnight on weekends.  Recently, in the wake of some serious violence, there has been a suggestion to change this to an earlier time.  I think the proposal suggest 9 pm for the younger groups and an extra hour for some of the older groups.  This has stirred a bit of debate in Baltimore city and has politicians and cops and experts and citizens weighing in.

Luckily I am not here to debate curfews.  I am not here to argue if they are effective or not.  I am not here to talk about if it is an oppressive move that wreaks of desperation and lack of real solutions.  I am not here to disagree with experts who say the U.S. is the only place to put curfews on their young when a friend of mine living in Egypt recently posted  about being worried if he would make it home by curfew.  I guess he is an adult so the government is not singling out kids and it is more considered martial law, so the expert is technically right.  What I am here to do is promise you will never have to worry about this.

Don't get me wrong, you will have a curfew to worry about, just not one set out by the city government.  No.  You will only have to worry about the curfew set by your parents which will probably be a full couple hours earlier than any municipality mandate.  If you decide to break a curfew, you might consider dealing with the cops might be easier.  I don't want government to have to do my parenting for me and think it is a failure of our society that it even gets to the point where the government has the chance or sees the need to get involved.  And when I say our society I am not blaming some vague group but pointing to each and every individual parent and their own level of culpability.  I am sure this will be easier said than done and I might be a little naive since I am not yet dealing with a head strong teenager and only am dealing with a head strong four year old who for the most part still respects his parents' authority.  But I am up for any challenge you send at me because I love you.

Sincerely with love from your dad,

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