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Thursday, August 11, 2011

THE "DOUGHERTY GANG"

  

It sounds like pure fiction!  Three siblings seemingly rotten to the core.  What triggered their criminal rampage that took them from Florida to Colorado, leading them to shoot at multiple police officers, steal cars, rob banks, and involve themselves in multiple high speed chases with law enforcement?  At the end of the manhunt, the eldest, a 29-year-old woman who was a stripper by profession, repeatedly fired at officers on the scene until she was finally shot in the leg.  Their photos, splashed all across the media, reveal three normal-looking young people.  Yet, between them, they have 20 felony charges in their criminal history.  There is unwed pregnancy, sexual perversion of multiple kinds, and an arsenal of weapons and ammunition they used freely until their capture.

We want to know what happened to create such monsters?  What kind of home training (or seeming lack thereof) did these three receive?  What would make them embrace such reckless, dangerous anarchy?

May I suggest that these three have exhibited an extreme example of a popular mindset in our culture?  What was on display in this crime spree was utter, unadulterated selfishness.  The FBI implied there may be a disdain for law enforcement, but one does not need to be privy to their tweets and texts to see that.  Reports are that on a social media account, the sister said, "I love to farm and shoot guys and wreck cars.  I'm a redneck and proud of it" (ajc.com).  This was self-centeredness and disdain for authority at its most unabashed.

Their parents certainly take the pressure off of any of the rest of us in a contest for "worst parents of the year."  But, let us consider that we are instilling values in our children, by example, by neglect, by intentional teaching, and by what we prize and value.  We are giving the next generation its worldview by the decisions we make and rationale we employ.

I am not saying that we are raising firearm-crazy rednecks, but we are raising our children to have certain values and priorities.  They will become what we are helping to make them.  That sobers me to no end.  What a great responsibility God has placed upon our shoulders!  He will hold us accountable for the direction in which we are setting them.  Many people will talk about our children in the years and decades to come.  What will they say about them?  May words like "godly," "committed," "faithful," "spiritual," "unselfish," and "servant" modify others' descriptions of them!  May we be modeling those very traits before their impressionable eyes. 

Neal Pollard   

 

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