Parental discipline redux

Extra chores, withheld desserts, and grounding may be going the way of poodle skirts and cherry coke floats if the latest installments in the Nebraska safe-haven law saga are any indication. Two grandparents dropped their 14-year-old granddaughter off at Creighton University Medical Center last week, but later changed their minds, deciding a temporary sojourn as a ward of the state was enough to teach the poor girl "a lesson." Not so lucky for a 13-year-old boy from Michigan. His mother, who drove 12 hours to drop him off, is unlikely to develop seller's remorse, given the amount of time she had--12 hours!--to mull over her decision. (Next thing you know, hospital gift shops will be selling preshrunk cottons reading, "I went to Omaha to get rid of my kid and all I got in return was this lousy tee-shirt.") Fortunately, the state legislature is also changing its mind--about the ill-conceived law itself; too bad that mistake cannot be rectified until lawmakers reconvene in January.

"Nebraska: After Second Thoughts, Guardians Take Back Abandoned Girl," Associated Press, October 10, 2008

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