It started with Madelyn

What part of “Thou Shalt Not …” don’t our kids understand?

I know that there are youthful Malibuites who do not love their fellow man, and I am distraught by youth like that! Likewise, the Lilly’s Cafe 8 a.m. coffee assembly is distraught. These citizens of Malibu are in their 60s, 70s and 80s with an occasional youthful visitor to the group, me. Shaking hands with a member of this group is like touching the past. These Malibuites are still industrious men and women and a treasure of knowledge. Growing up was a challenging experience for them. It was a quest.

The theme of their contemporary coffee chitchat has to do with the shootings at our educational institutions, the lack of respect for authority and the family unit. This is their allegory not mine. It is something that they wanted me to share. They said “Tom, you can write. So tell the newspaper what we think.”

Let’s see, they think, as I recall, that it started when Madelyn Murray O’Hair complained that she didn’t want any prayer in our schools, and folks said, OK.

Then someone said you had better not read the Bible in school — the same Bible that says thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal and love your neighbor as yourself. And again folks stated O.K.

They remember Dr. Benjamin Spock, who said we shouldn’t spank our children when they misbehave, because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem? And folks said, OK, we won’t spank them. They relate that Dr. Spock had us spend so much time putting our kids on the pot, we can’t get them off it.

Then someone said that teachers and principals better not discipline our children when they misbehave. Our administrators said whatever, no one in this school better touch a student when they misbehave because we don’t want any bad publicity, or want to be sued.

Someone said, let’s let our daughters have abortions if they want, and we won’t even have to tell their parents. And folks stated that’s a grand idea. Then someone else said, let’s give our sons all the condoms they want, so they can have all the “fun” they desire, and we won’t have to tell their parents. And folks said that’s another great idea. So now we’re asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don’t know right from wrong, and why it doesn’t bother them to kill.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, Malibuites can figure it out.

Tom Fakehany

The Malibu Times is the first newspaper in Malibu, serving the community since 1946.

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