Meet Debra Harrell, a single mother of a 9 year old girl and another victim of the war on poverty.
Just like Shanesha Taylor, she had a hard choice to make about her daughter. Either let the little girl stay alone in the home that had just been broken into, or let the little girl play at a park where she would be surrounded by other parents and children.
The child was given a cell phone to use in case of emergencies, and knew how to walk the short mile and a half back to her mother’s job. This was as reasonable and responsible decision as she could have made given her options. What would have happened if she had left the girl home alone to be harmed by someone else breaking in to their place again? Since most break-ins occur when people are away at work, this is a far more likely scenario than anything happening to her in the park. She had a choice and she made the best one available.
Now let’s keep in mind that this is not a toddler, this is a 9 year old. I have a daughter this age myself. My daughter is responsible and respectful. She knows how to handle herself around strangers. Were I put in a similar situation, I would have probably made a similar call. I’d be nervous, worried, and scared; but not as scared as I would be if I had left her alone in a house that had just been broken into.
Especially when you realize that a child is statistically more likely to be molested by someone they know, than they are to be lured away by a complete stranger. Offenders like this prey on those who are most convenient to them.
And let’s be completely reasonable here folks, how many people are reading this who were allowed to go hang out in their own neighborhoods by age 9?
People are pissing about the girl walking a mile and a half to McDonald’s…but my daughter is expected to walk two miles to school if I can’t drive her. Two miles is the standard for a what makes a child a walker/car rider or a bus rider. My 9 year old walks farther than that to go up to the convenience store for a slurpee with her older sister.
This woman was just trying to play the hand she was dealt and this is what she gets for it. She’s doing everything in her power to provide a stable life for her daughter but it’s still not enough for our current society.
There are videos showing people saying “She should have found somebody to watch her” an idea that I have covered already. But let me repeat myself…
Because someone she knows is not the same as someone she trusts with her children. Being willing to trust someone with your lawn mower shouldn’t be automatically equated with someone whom you can trust with the lives of your children.
Had she left her children with someone she didn’t entirely trust, she risked one of her children being injured or killed…then arrested for child endangerment. Either way it was a no win situation.
And, again, the child is statistically more likely to me harmed by someone she already knows than someone she doesn’t know. If she’s living in an area where your house gets broken in to over a cheap laptop, the child definitely didn’t need to be left there alone. Something happening to her at that park was still a maybe, while something happening to her at home alone in the middle of the day was more of a definite since it had already happened once.
The news outlet said there are programs for child care; but they obviously have no idea how they work. The waiting lists for most of these programs are a mile long. The kid could be grown before your name comes up. Plus, younger children and infants are a higher priority than a child this old. And on top of all of that, she likely wouldn’t have qualified anyway since she works.
Why are we doing this to people who are just trying to survive in this unfair world? What were this woman’s options really? Being poor is not a criminal offense.
This child has now been ripped from her family and her mother has likely lost her job over the arrest. How is this better than letting a kid play at a playground, surrounded by other children and families, for a few hours while she works?
Ask yourself who the real monster is here.