published Friday, May 25th, 2012

Abysmal behavior and a lack of personal responsibility

Two people have made the news in recent months, offering an opportunity for society to glean valuable information that testifies to a reality: If personal responsibility is not demanded with consequences, it will not occur.

One is Desmond Hatchett, the Knoxville 33-year-old who has contributed his genetic material to 11 separate women and spawned 30 children. Nine of these children were born since 2009, according to newspaper reports.

His newsworthiness is due to his inability to provide child support to these children and the females in their lives. His repeated court appearances asking for a reduction in his financial burden in light of his minimum-wage job have focused on the meager effort he has made to support these children. Estimates in news stories indicate that some of these children may receive as little as $1.49 per month as their "support."

When working, Hatchett is required to turn over 50 percent of his wages for child support -- the maximum allowed under law.

The other individual is Angel Adams, a 39-year-old Tampa, Fla., woman reported to be pregnant with her 16th child, according to the Free Republic on May 9, 2012. Her 15 children are the products of liaisons with three different men.

Neither of these people deserves the designation of mother, father or parent.

Adams has been an ongoing story beginning in 2008 after falling behind in payments to the Tampa Housing Authority to the tune of $6,000 and more than 30 court hearings to deal with her children who were not adequately fed, clothed or housed until others intervened.

In a multi-year news story, Tampa's News Channel 8 broadcast Adams among her children declaring, "Somebody needs to pay for all my children!"

Both pathetic examples exist because of individual choices made.

Space does not permit, yet intellectual honesty and critical thinking direct our minds toward the obvious: Personal responsibility has to be not just taught, learned and practiced in our homes but our society must expect and demand it.

Rather than spending untold millions and billions on funding abysmal behavior, the decision should be made to expect citizens to demonstrate civil and decent behavior or find the consequences severe.

There is no defense for this mindset. There is no defense to enable this behavior. But our government and certain worldviews embrace such in the name of empathy and tolerance while guaranteeing a life of victimhood and blame.

Does America want to rid itself of gang activity, drug problems, hunger, corporate theft at the highest levels, sex trafficking of our abandoned youth, political corruption, and any number of acts of crime and infractions against humanity?

As individuals, as families, as churches and as communities we're going to have to go there.

The demand must be personal responsibility for all.

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shen said...

The writer of this article failed to mention all those men who have dumped their sperm at sperm banks. Some have fathered as many as 400 and more children. It's going to be interesting when those children, not aware of their being half brothers and sisters, start to marry and inter-marry one another. One can only imagine the possibility for physical, emotional and psychological deformities and health problems that may arise for generations to come.

May 25, 2012 at 10:06 a.m.
328Kwebsite said...

"Spawned," huh?

Was Jesus "spawned" or "born"? How about your own kids? If feeding them required the community's help, would you characterize the birth of your own children with words usually applied to lower life forms?

Using the cost of providing help as an excuse for denigrating someone's existence is a low blow. That's what this editorial is really about: insulting people over survival bills.

We accepted everyone else, regardless of cost, so far. We didn't ask the editorial writer what his birth cost our people. Almost no one lives today who won't need help from the group at some point in their lives.

While it's obvious that those two people cited in the essay have gone overboard with their choice to have unprotected sex and reproduce, it's not acceptable to insult the existence of those children who are the result of that conduct.

As I read this editorial, that was one of the messages I received: that the Free Press thinks that if your life is not profitable, then it's not worth having or witnessing. I think those kinds of priorities are out of whack.

Would you have our elderly residents apologize for their existence? If their parents had thought things through better, then maybe they wouldn't have lived to be old and poor.

People over 65 make up a rapidly growing segment of our impoverished population. It might serve the editors well to recognize that by insulting the value of life of the poor, you may be insulting a significant sample of this paper's readership.

As a community, we value the lives of all of our citizens equally. Implying that some people's lives are a burden on the community because they are poor is not the right example to set for our community.

The very choice to use the word "spawned" in the editorial above was offensive to me. Would you treat rich white people's kids like fish? It's okay, though, if the people involved are poor and black, though, huh?

"Born" or "raised" would be the term a professional journalist might have used. Please avoid using animal-related words when referring to the poor. Especially avoid using animal-related words when referring to ethnic minorities. Thanks.

May 25, 2012 at 10:40 a.m.
LibDem said...

The valuable information society can glean from these examples is that there are some sick people out there. I doubt this is a national trend.

The children didn't choose this and are the victims. We may want to punish the sick adults but the children become collateral damage.

May 25, 2012 at 3:13 p.m.

When, in reality, that result from incest is not particularly likely. Even with the odds of it happening, other genetic and developmental abnormalities are more likely. Take the hemophilia that beset families in Europe. It was the result not of inbreeding as people suspect, but a spontaneous mutation.

Besides, any number of screening tests are available and more every day. You should have them done anyway, especially since some can be fixed.

In regards to the editorial, beware of what solutions you support, some of them would risk being very authoritarian. Or brutal towards those least able to do anything about it, and even less culpable for the wrongs you so rage against.

May 25, 2012 at 4:11 p.m.
Easy123 said...

It's interesting how, in the list of evil things America wants to rid itself of, the author doesn't mention anything about the rape and torture of Catholic boys and girls by priests. Then the author goes on to mention "churches" as a group that should attempt to solve this problem.

Just an observation.

May 25, 2012 at 7:25 p.m.

Or the Church pastor that suggested solving the "homosexual problem" with a giant death camp.

Omission by intent?

May 25, 2012 at 7:50 p.m.
Easy123 said...


I find that to be the case the majority of the time in articles in the TFP. Too many biased and slanted articles and editorials in such a respected newspaper.

May 25, 2012 at 7:57 p.m.
PinkSalmon said...

I've found the right side of tfp always harp on stories of this nature on a pretense of concern, when it's a sly way of showing bigotry, hate and attempts to overall demean and insult targeted group. Then they claim their christian values. Surely, there are likely just as many similar stories of this kind in rural appalachia America, along with the inbreeding from being too closely related that goes on.

May 25, 2012 at 8:21 p.m.
shen said...

There's always more to a story.

After the hearing, Adams said she's a proud Florida native, a descendent of David Levy Yulee, a former U.S. senator and plantation owner who built the Yulee Railroad line in North Florida in the mid 1800s and was later imprisoned for aiding the Confederacy. She once worked in a linen factory. She has three other older children, besides the 12 who live with her.

She said her misfortunes began when she scuffled with a sheriff's deputy two years ago. It happened when her 9-year-old son was suspended for bringing a knife to school. She was two months pregnant. After her arrest, she said her troubles snowballed.

More can be found at Tampa Bay Times

If the mother and children were blond haired and blue eyed, she'd be getting movie deals and thanked for preserving the white race.

May 25, 2012 at 10:20 p.m.
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