Heartbreaking stupidity, over and over and over again

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By Arlene Jones

Columnist

I'm proud to say that certain news stories still shock me. I haven't become so jaded and cold-hearted by life's realities. When I hear of a tragedy, it still wrenches my heart and soul. So when I read the story in the news about a dying 5-year-old child from Kenosha, Wisconsin who was dropped off at the hospital after having been shot, I felt the evilness of that act in my gut. 

What kind of person could drop off a child and just leave? We're talking about a kid who has only been on this earth for five years — one to two of which were spent learning to speak, think, walk and control bodily functions. We're talking about a child who probably hasn't attended school and is ready to go to kindergarten. If hospitals are big scary places even for adults, with machines that whirl and strangers with needles and scalpels, imagine what it's like for a kid.

Grown folks in the commission of their criminal activity may have no qualms about dropping their partners off at a hospital after they've been shot. But who disposes of a child in that matter? How are the medical personnel supposed to know the kid's medical history — like his blood type and whether or not the boy is allergic to certain medicines?  

There is a reason we still describe a doctor as "practicing" medicine — because no medical procedure is always that cut-and-dried. A lot can go wrong when doctors have all the information they need, so imagine what it must be like when they're working from a blank slate.

Relationship details in regard to this story are really sketchy. They interviewed a man who said the dead child was his grandson. He also said the two people who dropped off the boy at the hospital were his sons. Personally I'm not as interested in relationships as I am in knowing and understanding why someone would just drop off a child and leave. The dead child is identified as Dakari Weldon and anyone interested in learning more details can Google it.

We had an incident in Chicago where a horrific car crash happened at Harrison and Oakley, trapping three people in the back of a car. The car caught on fire and if they didn't die from of the crash, the fire ensured it. The two people in the front of the car were able to escape and fled the scene. One of the people who ran from the car turned out to be the brother of the girl who died in the back.

I could go on with story after story of incidents like these two. I just have to ask, when did it all begin? When did we stop caring about our relatives to the point where we abandon them to die alone? What is the reason folks just do not care? 

The common factors in both of these cases are young people under the age of 25 plus drugs and alcohol. In the Wisconsin case, of the two individuals charged, one has admitted he left the gun to go smoke a blunt. In the Chicago car-crash case, the driver tested just below the legal level for being drunk.

With the legalization of recreational marijuana, I'm sure stories like these will be seen more often than not. 

Are we, as a society, prepared for it?

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