Jeffrey S. Stephens: The Value Of Consequences

Back in the 1970’s a former car company executive developed a new-age seminar that came to be know as est.  The training, as it was sometimes called, had a run of about fifteen years, with people subjecting themselves to two long weekends of instruction, interaction and advice.  It was popular in some quarters, criticized in others and even satirized in movies, including a comical Burt Reynolds vehicle.  Nevertheless, many felt there was value in the process, which covered many areas and issues.

One of those topics touched on was child rearing, and the leader of the seminar told the story of how their founder had once taken his young son to a movie with a bunch of other parents and children who were all excited to see some new release. Before the movie started, while trailers and ads were running, a lot of the boys began hurling some of their recently purchased candy around the theatre.  Not so good.  If other parents found this acceptable, our protagonist did not.  He told his son to stop or he would take him out of the theatre, head for home and miss the film.  For a minute or so the boy behaved, but the temptation of what his friends were still doing become too great and he resumed launching chocolates and jellied candies in the air.

His father did not hesitate.  He took his son by the hand, pulled him from his seat and dragged him up the aisle toward the lobby.  

We all know what happened next, right?  His father gave him a stern talking too, wagged a menacing finger, took away the candy and they returned to their seats.  Right?


While his on braced himself for the obligatory lecture, he was instead led through the lobby, taken to their car, driven home and placed in his room to spend the night without dinner.

What?  Was this child cruelty?  Did someone call the authorities?  Was this poor boy scarred for life?

No, no, and no.  This boy learned a valuable lesson, and so did everyone in the est seminar.  Actions without consequences inevitably lead to more of the same inappropriate behavior.  On the other hand, children who are raised to respect what they are told because actions will follow, tend to grow up as women and men of character.  Having proudly raised two wonderful sons the same way, I can attest to the effectiveness of the approach.

The point here is obvious, since the same rules apply to society in general.  If someone hijacks a car, or commits a snatch and grab robbery, or shoves someone in front of a subway train, there must be serious and swift consequences.  Otherwise, they will not only repeat their odious behavior, but others will follow when they see there is no price to pay for their lawlessness.  

Contrary to what so many on the left will try to sell, this is not a racial issue, it is an issue of character, integrity, safety, civility, and justice.  As we have catalogued before, black Americans are by far the largest part of the population victimized by black criminals.  Don’t those victims deserved to be protected?

Take a look at the children of those who oppose consequences for misdeeds.  Read about their drug use, suicides, DUI’s and the rest of their transgressions.  Perhaps, if their liberal parents had dragged them out of the movie theatre, even once, they would be far better off than they became.

Jeffrey S. Stephens

Jeffrey S. Stephens lives in Greenwich, Connecticut. He is also the author of the Jordan Sandor espionage thrillers, beginning with Targets of Deception and, most recently, Rogue Mission. Crimes and Passion is the first in a planned series featuring Lieutenant Robbie Whyte.

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