08/17/10 — Children lost: Another story of another family destroyed and young lives lost

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Children lost: Another story of another family destroyed and young lives lost

There is going to be a lot more said in the case involving South Carolina mother Shaquan Duley, who has now confessed that she suffocated her children and then drove her car into the river.

There will be some who will see this as an isolated case, and who will think that this mother was just a sick individual.

And they might be right.

But why this is important to talk about -- and why so many people are looking more closely at parents and families today -- is that there are more cases like this around the country every day. The motive and how the crime is carried out might be different, but in the end, the children are killed at the hands of their parents.

And that leaves the rest of us to wonder what went wrong and what we can do to make sure it does not happen again.

The bigger implication is simple really. There are too many people who cannot handle being parents, don't do it well, and who either do not seek help or who are missed by the system designed to make sure no children live in homes like this.

The problem is, there are just too many places to check and not enough resources to do so.

There are ways to change this pattern -- more support for parents, more education about the consequences and pressures of teenage parenthood as well as stricter rules for reporting and investigating child abuse and neglect.

All of those changes are too late to have saved these children. Perhaps they could save others.

Published in Editorials on August 17, 2010 10:27 AM