Monday, 23 June 2008

Child Protection?

Two of them simply sat there oblivious of the rest of the people in that carriage on the train during the rush hour. He had his hand on her bare lap while kissing her neck. She in turn, had her hand buried under his jacket. It was quite obvious what they were up to. As if that was not enough, two stops later, another couple got into the train and began their own careless game of stupid love. Further down towards the end of that carriage, were two more couples having their own fling. A little girl of about seven or eight who was in the same carriage, tried as best she could to hide her face as the movie unfolded right in front of her. I watched her as she tried helplessly to keep herself from watching the raw pornoghrapic scenes around her. Two middle aged couple gazed at the graphic scenes and plainly shook their heads in disbelief. It was apparent on the faces of everyone present in that carriage of that train that what those sets of couples were engaged in was indecent in public view. However, no one could say or do anything to caution them to stop or at least reduce the activities they were involved in. Maybe if the train had to travel for much longer, they would get to the actual love-making act right there without any care in the world about who was present or watching.

In an age and time when there is so much hype about child protection and the rights of the young ones, I can’t seem to comprehend who would, and could actually protect the child from the molestation they are exposed to. A lot of effort is made for parents to protect their kids from seeing certain stuffs both on the television and the internet. The question here is this : Is the child or can the child be protected? Who will protect the child? Where is the child protected? From what is the child being protected?

Every turn one makes whether on the street, in the bus, in the tubes, shops, on the train, stations, parks etc, one is faced with couples smooching, kissing, romancing without any scruples and considerations for who else is present. One question that pops up on my mind most of the time when such pictures are rolling is that: is it that such people do not have homes or any other convenient place to carry out and express their undying love? Or are they simply putting up a show of what they lack in privacy? Or is their relationship being opposed to by family, thus they could only find time for themselves on the trains and in buses or any other public places? Or can they be categorised as plainly irresponsible? If it is actually a sincere honest show or display of their true love, do they have to carry on for so long and actually get other people present uncomfortable in expressing their love?

Having witnessed these reckless display for some time now, one would realise that most of them are barely up to the age of responsible adults. In many of the cases where the events have really gone too far for long, the victims are most often adolescents(properly put, teenagers) or do I say some irresponsible, carefree and unwise young people. I am yet to see a wedding band their fingers at least to indicate that they are married and are terrifyingly in love. In fact, if one looks closely, one would see that such characters lacked any form of self-worth or confidence. They tend to cling to each other to gain some sort of dutch courage and carry out what they know is not proper in public view.

Has anyone studied some of the young people when they are alone in the train or on the bus? To be honest, my heart goes out for them. This is because when you find them on their own, there is an aura of fear, timidity, lack of self worth and loneliness about them, both the boys and the girls alike. They tend not to be brave enough to look anyone else around them in the eyes rather they stare endlessly at the floor or roof of the bus or train. And they are extra polite to everyone around them. What a sharp contrast to when they are in a group?

It's such a pity that acceptable public behaviours, and the dignity of true love and it's forms of expression are being trivialised, and the situation is magnified every moment. One cannot safely ride on an escalator without being harassed by various sets of couples making out along the way.

Going back to the subject, are the children supposed to watch such stuff knowingly or unknowingly? And should they learn about love and its expressions in such manners? When would a child be said to have been molested? Will that be after the real act rape, abuse or after been fed with such uncensored scenes daily? Does anyone else wonder why children as young as 8 and 9, and indeed those in their early teenage years are in such a hurry to lose their virginity or get involve in sexual activities from such tender ages? Would it be correct if we ascribe some of their haste to the indecent exposure they experience all through their lives at home, on the streets, on the bus, in the trains, at the parks, in restaurants and just about anywhere people could be found?
Is there anything that could be done to help and save the child, and properly have child protection in practise instead of the farce that seems to be in place now?

I am pretty sure that many of the responsible grown ups who have kids of their own out there would agree that the depth of their love notwithstanding, they would never be caught making out in full glare of their kids apart from the occasional kiss or curdles that are healthy.

As an individual, I honestly have no idea how the improper behaviours could be curbed or minimised. However, if there are enough responsible parents and adults who do care about children, and want to protect and preserve their innocence, then let them begin to speak out. After all, it would be better to do something than not at all. We don’t have to wait until the number of under-twelve pregnancies hit an all time high before.
It is indeed worrying and I candidly hope that some maturity and decency are restored to our lives and society at large. It is written in the Bible: “Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

© Joy Ozono
January 2008

1 comment:

Debbie said...

The society is on top of its head, kids are no longer allowed to be kids, suddenly they want to do grown up stuff, I wonder what they will do when they become adults. Parents are out pursuing their careers, leaving the children at the mercies of carers, and too tired at night to sit down and give them a proper up bringing.
I wonder what sort of adults today's kids will turn out to be.