Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Scribbles and Scrambles ~ Something Needs to Change - Part 2

Foster care has been around for over 100 years.

A lot has changed in 120ish years. Can I hear an amen?

From horse and buggy to three car garages. From one room schoolhouses where teachers often started teaching at age 16 with nothing more than an aptitude for learning and the ability to stay in school beyond the 8th grade to schools that provide computers to each student. From airplanes becoming available for passengers to some folks flying more than they drive. From a computer the size of a room to one the size of a watch. Information over a hundred years ago taking weeks, sometimes months, to today where we can know about a crisis across the globe in real time. A whole lot of change.

A hundred years ago a family often consisted of multiple generations under one roof or same neighborhood. I'm not suggesting there weren't huge problems, some people have always been capable of breathing life, others more inclined to suck the marrow from the bones of their victims. Clearly so many children needed care that the foster system was developed to meet that need. There has always been child endangerment, broken people and darkness to contend with. 

I'm also not suggesting that the system, as it was created, wasn't a great idea. Nor am I saying that there should be no such thing as foster care. Not at all. 

But because something started over 100 years ago and people are going to be people, does that mean we have to allow it continue as it has for decades without common sense changes?

One hundred years ago children were being orphaned by early parental death due to diseases and dangerous working conditions. Today it seems as if drugs are taking the parents. Not really taking them, just their ability to parent, their desire to protect their children, sometimes their very souls. A goal of reunifying a family is a lovely, lovely thing. It makes sense. Especially if all members of that family are on board that train. But my concern is that many of these today parents would rather play the system, or retain their rights, or be left alone to their addiction rather than suck it up and create a safe place for their children. 

to be continued