Sept. 27, 2008
On Friday the USA Today carried a story of Nebraska’s “Safe Haven” law. I authored and passed Louisiana’s version of that law back in 1999. Several states now have those laws on the books which are designed to encourage frightened and confused young mothers not to throw their newborn babies in the trash but drop them at a “Safe Haven” like a hospital or fire station, no questions asked.
Since the Nebraska law went into effect in July there have been some unintended results. Over a half dozen parents have dropped off not new born babies, but kids ranging in age from 1 to 17.
A few parents with challenging teenagers might be tempted to chuckle and leave the article in their teen’s room as a veiled threat, but when you get beyond that temptation you can’t help but realize that this speaks to a profound problem in our nation - a lack of commitment and responsibility.
Men and women faced with the difficulties of parenting find a way for government to bail them out, or should we say rescue them. No matter what street we drive down, whether it is Main Street or Wall Street, the growing refusal to assume responsibility cast a dark and ominous cloud over our nation’s future.