when i was in 9th grade, circa 1984-85, i found a can of mace in the crawl space beneath my house. i had a concept of what mace was for but i did not really understand. i was 14 at the time. i took the can to school and sprayed it into my desk where i was sitting.
not smart, grant, but i was a teenager.
of course the whiff of aerosol mace came into my face i started coughing. i excused myself to the restroom. when i came back the ENTIRE class was coughing. NO one knew save for the boy sitting next to me. he complained to the principal. next thing i know the vice principal wanted to search my locker.
she said to me, "gina, now, i am surprised. you are such a good kid". moral of the story, "good kids" make silly mistakes. a teenagers brain, no matter how big their body may look or how long they have been in puberty they are still just a kid. and though they should be held responsible for their actions, the repercussions to their actions should be dealt with wisely and in light of their age what is appropriate for their age, a teenager is a child not an adult. psychology affirms that a person's brain does not fully mature until they are at least 24-25 years old.
and what makes one child good another child bad?? in my view there is no such thing as a good child or a bad child. a good teenager or a bad teenager is simply one that has been afforded concern, love and compassion from a good stable adult to guide them.
i made a silly and immature choice to bring the can of mace to school. i honestly did not really understand why my actions, before i did it, was wrong. of course afterwards i learned that mace is not something to play around with.
i wonder if i had been a 14 year old in today's world and having brought mace to school and sprayed it in my desk....would i have been expelled or suspended from school?
(c) Tamu Ngina, All Rights Reserved.