To Our Readers

"Boys will be boys." The old adage often brings a knowing smile. The sentiment is usually voiced about a young person we know—perhaps a boy in the neighborhood or in our own family—who has gotten into a little "harmless" mischief. Maybe he has brought home another toad-frog and released it in the kitchen at lunch time. Or, like Dennis the Menace, he's giving Mr. Wilson fits again—Dennis somehow soaked Mr. Wilson's Sunday newspaper with the garden hose while washing his bicycle, or he just knocked another baseball into Mr. Wilson's zinnias.

But what about the other stories we hear about—the ones that aren't funny at all. The thirteen-year-old selling crack cocaine on a street corner. The fifteen-year-old arrested for armed robbery and assault. The school shootings. Somehow "boys will be boys" doesn't sound right anymore. We want boys to grow up knowing the consequences of their actions, having moral responsibility, being strong and courageous but also caring and compassionate. We want our boys to grow up to become good citizens, good fathers and husbands, good men.

July 20, 1998

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