While brushing up on my British Labour Party knowledge – as all of you probably do on a regular basis – I ran across a story in the Guardian about Prime Minister Gordon Brown, specifically about his campaign for re-election.
Most of his platform was over my head, but one part stood out to me. Brown plans to crack down on rowdy children by going straight to the source: bad parents.
Most well-to-do Brits, it seems, would love to see “antisocial” adults under house arrest until their screaming brats drove them to madness.
Enter Brown and Labour, guns blazing. Brown promised under his government, parents of antisocial children would be subject to a parenting contract. He also said 50,000 of Britain’s “worst” families would be required to undergo “family intervention.”
I’m sorry, what was that? I thought you said you were going to waste thousands of pounds hiding behind the bushes to monitor families across the country, and then throw even more money at counseling for “bad” parents. Not to mention the invasion of privacy.
I may pretend I’m not socialized to American values, but here, my blood runs red, white and blue.Â The biggest surprise in the story was actually the comments. Few people took issue with the idea they might be cast in irons if their child threw a tantrum at the grocery store. They were more concerned that Brown was trying to weasel into re-election by pandering to people he never served before.
OK, so that sounds legit, too.
The point is the American people would fight this tooth and nail. And they’d be right, which doesn’t happen as often as we’d like to believe.
So, the next time you see a kid kicking his heels on the floor at Chili’s, say a prayer of thanks that this is America, and you can cry if you want to.