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Daily Newspaper and Tourism Guide for Reeves County Trans Pecos, Big Bend of West Texas


Mac McKinnon


Friday, October 31, 1997


By Mac McKinnon

Parents are responsible for kids' behavior

I've been writing a great deal recently about parental responsibility.
I want to say quickly before I get into this that I'm certainly not an
expert in this field as I've made my share of mistakes but here's how I
see it.

We recieve letters from parents wanting help in controlling their
children. Local law enforcement officials have received the same pleas.
There is no real place for parents to go to get that kind of help.

Schools are trying to conduct parenting sessions on a monthly basis but
few people show up. Some really good parents raise bad children and some
really bad parents raise good children so obviously there's no set
answer to the challenges in raising children.

The reason I bring up these problems is that schools and teachers are
having problems getting young people to show up for classes and do their
work as well as attending extracurricular events for which they have
volunteered. Attendance is a high priority item, not just for the
schools to get their average daily attendance up to where it should be
because that's how schools get money from the state, but also attendance
is important for the individual student.

It is so easy to get behind in today's world. You miss one class or one
practice session and the student misses out. Not only does the student
miss out, but classmates are penalized as the teacher has to take the
time to help that student catch up. If a person misses enough classes,
they are hopelessly lost.

Apparently some parents don't realize just how important it is for
students to be in class and if the youngster says they don't want to go
to school or whatever the function is, the parent helps out by backing
the student with some kind of flimsy excuse. We need to support our
teachers and schools.

We have some really good teachers and some great things going on in our
school district.

There is a problem here in sports. Some football players don't want to
go to practice. Our coaches are very discouraged. I believe we have a
great coaching staff and they want to build a good program. The coaches
work unbelieveable hours but they can't build a winning tradition
without hard work on the part of the students and support from parents.
I'm of the old fashioned school in that if you don't show up for
practice, you don't play that week. If you quit any sport, you don't
play any other sport that school year. Nobody wants quitters.
However, the coaches are faced with a problem in that if they don't let
some of those who skip practice play some, they have a hard time
fielding a competitive team. I'm glad I don't have to deal with that

However, in a way, I, along with other employers, do have to deal with
that problem in that if these young people get away with skipping
assignments and school - or practices - they might just feel they can
do it in the workplace. NOT TRUE!

In essence, these young people by skipping school or a sports practice,
are starting down the road that leads to nowhere and somebody needs to
let them know that life isn't very rewarding unless you want to do what
is necessary to succeed.

There's a lot of people out there who have talent and brains but never
succeed or accomplish anything because they don't want to do the work
that is necessary to be successful. It's not always fun. But necessary.
We shouldn't waste our God give talents and parents who let us get away
with being lazy aren't doing their children any favors.

Editor's Note: Mac McKinnon is the Editor and Publisher of the Pecos Enterprise whose
column appears each Friday. He can be e-mailed at:

Your View

Red Ribbon Week lost its meaning at school

To The Editor:
In celebration of Red Ribbon Week, the schools were challenged to send
the message to be drug free. Through a competition of decorating, there
was a tie for first place between Austin Elementary and Bessie Haynes.
What a difference and a mixed message? The Austin school and other
schools were clearly red and the message was drug free. The Bessie
Haynes school was decorated in the theme of Halloween. Drug free in

The Halloween decorations started with a black spider and web inviting
you into its parlor. Skeletons, witches, demons, blackness, and death is

Agent Enrique Camarena who was satanly sacrificed for fighting the war
on drugs was not honored on Halloween. Red Ribbon Week honors the blood
shed by our law enforcement that is trying to fight the war against
drugs in our community.

Millions of dollars are spent fighting this war. Don't give our students
the wrong message. Halloween and Drug Free do not mix or connect.
Where was the thinking of our judges? The message was supposed to be
drug free and Red Ribbon Week. The Halloween message is confusing for
our elementary students that are not allowed to dress up for Halloween.
Let us try to have a positive and clear teaching to our students.

This tax paying voting parent would like the message to be clear. Drug
Free is the way to be. You can make a difference in the future of our
students by teaching them the dangers of drugs rather than teaching them
about Halloween.

A supporter of our Law Enfocement and a clear message for our students.


I do not disagree with Halloween, but let's not confuse our children.
Red Ribbon Week has nothing to do with Halloween, it is to honor one of
our fellow officers, who gave his life for the war on drugs.
We in law enforcement appreciate all the support we receive from our
school system and other members of our community.
We might not win the war on drugs, but here in Pecos, Texas we will not
stop fighting.


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Pecos Enterprise
Mac McKinnon, Publisher
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Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.

324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321

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Copyright 1997 by Pecos Enterprise
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