Cheat-Seeking Missles

Friday, December 15, 2006

Our Crumbling Civilization: Parenting Edition

Incredible Daughter #1 (who recently complemented us for raising our kids well ... shucks!) passed along two stories this a.m.:
Mom allegedly leaves child in car, shops with dog

A mother faces child endangerment charges after a valet called police to report she left her 2-year-old son alone in her BMW while she shopped at Scottsdale Fashion Square.

Gardenia Zakrzewski-Johansson was arrested in the mall parking lot outside Neiman Marcus after valets watched her walk into the store with a small dog under her arm, directing them to watch her car with the child inside.

"I'll be quick, don't tell anybody," Zakrzewski told one of the valets before going into the store for nearly 30 minutes, according to the police report.

The 39-year-old woman faces a Class 1 misdemeanor charge for the Monday afternoon incident, Scottsdale police Sgt. Mark Clark said.

"We don't think it's ever appropriate to leave your child alone in the car for five minutes, let alone 25 minutes," Clark said.

Zakrzewski-Johansson was allegedly uncooperative with officers who handcuffed her at the scene. She "kept stating that she did nothing wrong and that the valets were supposed to be watching her child" while she went inside Neiman-Marcus to pick up a Christmas gift, the report said. (source)
That mom's Parent of the Year compared to the dad in the next story:
Trial for father who killed tot who broke video game

This was Tyrone Spellman's explanation to police: He "snapped" after he thought his daughter had broken a $600 Xbox game console.

Alayiah Turman was only 17 months old, born March 29, 2005. Spellman beat her to death, prosecutors say.

In an alleged confession read at his preliminary hearing yesterday, Spellman, 25, said he was playing one of Tom Clancy's "Ghost Recon" games - a violent combat epic - in a front bedroom of his family's Brewerytown home that Thursday morning, Sept. 7. He had taken Alayiah into the room so her mother, Mia Turman, could rest.

"She pulled the cord and the whole game console fell over," Spellman said in his statement, read by Homicide Detective John Cummings. "I thought it was broken. I popped her in the face. I picked her up and tossed her in a chair."

Later that day - at 12:37 p.m. - Alayiah was pronounced dead at Temple University Hospital.

Spellman, also known as Anwar Salahuddin, was held for trial by order of Municipal Court Judge Gerard A. Kosinski on charges of murder, endangering the welfare of a child, and related offenses. (source)
I've posted such stories before, saying they wouldn't exist of traditional parenting roles still prevailed. But with the deterioration of the family and the all-to-frequent lack of a father's presence, these parents are behaving in ways we are incapable of comprehending.

These two cases are particularly poignant at Christmas time, because materialism and self-indulgence are more important to Zakrzewski-Johansson and Spellman/Salahuddin than the well-being of another -- even when that other is their own child.

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