Parents and Children

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Hi, I'm Bill O'Reilly reporting from Washington, D.C.  Thanks for watching us tonight.

Parents and children, that is the subject of this evening's Talking Points Memo .

Although we have alerted the authorities in New Jersey, we do not expect anything to be done about Whitney Houston's confessed behavior, taking illegal drugs while her 9-year-old daughter is in close proximity.

The fact is that millions of American parents routinely abuse drugs and alcohol in front of their own kids.  According to the feds, more than a half-million American children are currently being raised by the government, and the child welfare system is so overloaded and chaotic that few judges want to remove kids from the home unless the abuse is intense.

There is no question that appearing stoned or drunk in front of children is child abuse.  No child should be subjected to that.

The primary responsibility of parents is to protect their kids from harm and to provide a good example so that children have role models to emulate.  You can make any excuses you want, but Whitney Houston and other adults who put their own shallow pursuits ahead of the welfare of their kids are disgraceful, and society should scorn them.

But we don't.  Just days after Houston's defiant and revolting admissions on national television, thousands turned out to cheer her in New York City.

We are indeed a society that has lost its way.

Talking Points says this.  If you drink or drug in front of your kids, chances are they'll adopt that behavior when they get older.  If you curse and behave crudely around them, they will behave that way as well.  If you beat them, they will beat others.  If you show them bigotry, they will adopt that point of view.

Children are like sponges.  They absorb what their parents do.

Once again, the primary responsibility of all parents is to protect their kids and give them the tools to succeed in our hypercompetitive society.  Morals and courage and perspective must be taught by the parents.

If you're not willing to do that, don't have kids.  Society cannot raise any more abused children.  We simply cannot do it.  So people like Whitney Houston will not be held accountable, but we know and we should make our feelings known to all parents who are blatantly hurting that their children.

As Hillary Clinton once said, it takes a village.  I'd love to ask Mrs. Clinton what she thinks of Whitney.  Wouldn't you?

And that's The Memo .

The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day

Time now for the "Most Ridiculous Item of the Day".

It comes from Ron Carter, who lives in Grandview Heights, Ohio.

Mr. Carter writes, "Bill, why pick on the theft at Los Alamos?  A hundred other agencies do the same thing."

Now I get this kind of letter at least 300 times every single day.  Why pick on Whitney Houston?  Other people are worse.  Why criticize Trent Lott?  Robert Byrd is worse.  And on and on and on.

By that standard, we could never report anything.  We couldn't say Stalin was bad because someone would say, well, what about Hitler?  Nero couldn't be criticized.  What about Caligula?

Unfortunately, that kind of thinking that dismisses wrongdoing because other things are worse is an epidemic in America.  It is deeply woven into our culture.  No kid can be disciplined because they can always point to others who are worse.

That kind of thinking is ridiculous, but it is all over the place and it must be challenged.

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