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Are parents morally responsible for their child's actions?

  • Parents raised their child, teaching them right from wrong, so they are morally responsible.

    Parents are the "leaders" of their child. Parents should watch over their children and teach them how life works. If they don't teach well, their children might just ignore their parents, but it's up to the parent to correct that behavior. For example, a student is done with school for the day, but he comes home to an empty house because his parents are at work. All of a sudden, he climbs on a car and starts stomping on that car. Well, it is the parents' responsibility because his parents should have come home to supervise or found an after-school program. Also, if a parent starts saying bad words, their children might follow from their parents' poor behavior. Again, it comes down to it being the parents' fault for not being a good role model.

  • Parents,who are known as "leaders"

    Parents should watch over their children and teach them how life works. If they don't teach well, their children might just ignore their parents. For example, a student is done with school and his parents aren't there yet. And all of a sudden he starts climbing a car and starts stomping on the car. Well, it is the parent's responsibility because his parents should have came early. Also, if a parent starts saying bad words, their children might follow. That is how they teach poorly.

  • Children learn from their parents, psychologically speaking.

    Several studies in develpomental psychology have found that children are, esentially, a blank slate. Granted, there are several traits that are inborn or inhereted, but mostly children learn right and wrong through observation of others. Until they are of schooling age, their parents are the predominate role models in a child's life. Whether or not the child is taught integrity and morals is the responsibility of the parent. It is hoped that the parents can instill a strong enough sense of right and wrong so that by the time the child is exposed to other sources, their moral compass is secure.
    Therefore, I believe that parents are responsible for their children's actions, as they are the root of their character.

  • Parents are Responsible

    If parents decided to have sex and they had a child, they are responsible for teaching it responsibility. If they aren't ready to raise a child, then that's there fault they should have been more careful, you can't let someone else teach your kid how to act. Children's parents are the ones kids look up to and follow along with what they do more so then strangers or people they only know for a couple of years or less. So, if you weren't ready for that child, then yeah, you should have been more careful because now you have child for 18 years and it's not like you had to go through with the pregnancy so you chose to have a child. Maybe accidentally having a child is the first thing you should teach your kid not to do when they are old enough to. Even teaching them not to have sex at an early age, because that's responsibility.

  • Doing the Hard Things as Parents

    Is there a time when a parent should take steps to have their child arrested? Two weeks ago I was awakened at 3:00am by the sound of a car crash. I looked out the window to see a car on its side in my driveway and three people running from the scene. It was not hard for the police to locate the owner of the car using the tag number. The mom said at the time of the accident that her son was supposed to be driving the car. Upon later investigation, she apparently told a detective that she has two sons that have left home and she could not say for sure which one took the car. She also told the officer that she was considering reporting the car stolen before she got the call about the accident. Despite the fact that three cell phones were found at the scene of the accident, one belonging to the mom and one belonging to one of her sons, there has been no conviction of this individual for Hit and Run because the parents have said that they do not know the whereabouts of their child. Thus, all this individual learned from this event is that if you run from your irresponsibility, you might get away with it. The police will not continue to pursue this matter unless the parents file a police report saying the car was "stolen" or "taken without permission" by their child. At that point, the police would issue a warrant for an arrest and, when found, the son would be forced to face the consequences of his actions. Had he simply remained at the scene, he would have been ticketed for leaving the roadway and possibly driving too fast for conditions, but would otherwise have been able to move on with life by accepting responsibility for his actions. Instead, he is likely to get away with no consequences while the parents will have increased insurance rates at the very least from the replacement of their totaled vehicle. As a parent of two college-aged daughters, I cannot imagine not knowing the whereabouts of my children. Thus, a parent who gives a police officer that story is either covering for their child or is so estranged from the child that they should indeed file whatever police action is necessary for that child to understand responsibility for his actions.

  • Because They are your kids

    They are your kids Parents can only do so much & it's up that child to learn from the moral lessons taught to them, or to cause mischief in their life. As for parents that are unfit, a child can always have some sort of adult role model standing for good or help from an outside source if ever needed. In the end, there are just certain things one should automatically know on the topic of right or wrong.

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  • Parents are responsible

    It is the parents responsibility to teach right or wrong, even from very young age. Making them understand others too have the right to live and we need to respect that. Not taking care of the children , not teaching them moral values and not helping/correcting them when thing go wrong are ways by which you create bad people.

  • No, They Aren't

    Parents are only responsible for feeding, clothing, and enrolling their children in school. Any action their child does is unrelated to them as people. If people were responsible for the actions of their children, then the world would be pretty messed up. You can't control everyone. Why should you be responsible for something or one you can't control?

  • I do not support.

    Look here. Let's say my parents are DEAD. Then I go and kill somebody because I am fed up. How is my dad going to be responsible for me? Really. Another example would be that I, the careless guy, accidentaly injure somebody. Sure, My dad is responsible for me, but how responsible can he be?

  • Stop playing the blaming game.

    The notion of parents being morally responsible for their children's actions are silly. Let's start with a hypothetical scenario, I, a rebellious teenage adolescent, decide to rob a convenience store and end up killing a person in the process. I get caught, and the trial in the courts begins. Who committed the crime - I did. Assuming my parents were in another city and played no part in my actions (and, to make things interesting, let's say they physically and mentally abused me), did they play any part in my recent activities - no! According to the court of law, who is guilty? Shouldn't be the one who committed the crime? A criminal is a criminal regardless of his intent. As a high school kid, I see students playing around and only coming to school to start fights or hang around their friends. I think it is stupid to think that teachers should have any responsibilities in keeping such students in school. They make their choices everyday to skip class. Our parents engendered us, but they could have thrown us inside a dumpster, abandoning us. Yet, many of our parents did not. My parents work three jobs, and yes I wish they were home more; however, as long as I get a pencil, a calculator, a notebook, and a backpack, it is MY OWN RESPONSIBILITY to do well in school. My parents taught me at the age of fourteen that I will not be always responsible for what happens to me, but I will be responsible to what I answer to. I know it's hard for many to hear this, especially from a Hispanic with strong family ties, but get over yourselves. Stop playing the blaming game and do something about gang violence and socio-racial issues that are unique to a specific community. It is funny that the same people that say morally is relative and that each person has a right to whatever values they have, are always the one blaming other people. If they practiced what they say, then they would not be crying about how other people are raised. I am not neglecting issues such as the psychological impact our parents or environment may have on us. However, that is a different issue that may intertwine with the issue at hand, but not the focus. The question of what responsibilities a parent has to a child and who should be persecuted when one person committed a stupid mistake or crime are different issues.

  • The children have brains of their own.

    I don't believe the parents are responsible for the children's actions. You see many children who were not raised in a good environment, who have become very successful, such as star linebacker Patrick Willis for the San Francisco 49ers. He was raised with a very abusive father, and he himself made the decision to be the person he wanted to be.

  • Children learn from what they see and hear

    Most children prefer learning from their peers than the parents. And most of them prefer the misguided peer mates as friends, as some are bullies, so they fill secure. Thereby learning all sorts of characters from them. Some children genetically are societal mishaps, such as those who take pleasure in seeing others in pain. With these it think parents are not to blame.

    Posted by: CONE
  • Parents have a responsibility to teach their child, but the child is responsible for his own actions.

    Parents have a responsibility to instill a moral compass in their children. When kids do something bad, parents need to teach them right from wrong to make them understand how they should behave. However, many children choose to ignore advice and go their own way; if the parent teaches and disciplines the child and the child still does bad things, then the child is at fault.

    Posted by: SoWinif
  • I don't believe parents are morally responsible for their child's actions.

    Once children reach a certain age their parents cannot control everything they do. Teenagers, and even adolescents, are very free thinking and independent and parents cannot and should not be held responsible for everything their children do. Parents can raise their children to be the most responsible and respectful adults they can; however, it is still up to the children to follow through with those lessons.

    Posted by: AnxiousXavier
  • Blame doesn't help

    Parents are responsible for giving guidance (pointing the way to positive behaviour) and allowing consequences so the kid learns to take responsibility for his / her own choices. Parents are NOT responsible for the choices their offspring make. If they believe they are responsible it's sets them up to be controlling and the kid doesn't learn to be responsible for themselves. Temperament is important as well, some kids are very strong willed and have to learn all lessons themselves the hard way. Blaming parents just excuses poor behaviour in the individual and transfers the responsibility from the one who makes the choice therefore creating a victim / entitlement attitude. A parent can influence, yes BUT you can't be responsible for what you have no control over, that being another's choice contrary to guidance and consequences. That responsibility lies squarely with the individual.

  • Parents should not ALWAYS be morally responsible for their child's crimes.

    Depending on the circumstances, the age, what mental issues the child may have, the inherited mental issues if occurred, the parents should not always be held responsible. If there is a past of crimes that run in the family, that is not the child's fault for that trait to be inherited. I can understand that yes the parents should stress explaining what is wrong and right in life while their child is growing up. Some parents stress about smoking and that it would kill you or their significant other would not like it, and some children grow up and end up smoking anyway. Maybe it is not the parents' fault, but the society. Depending on the people that the child grew up around, friend or not, society is a big reason for certain actions. You would have to prove that it was the parent's fault for the crime of the child, they should not always be held responsible for the crimes depending on the age and the crime that was committed.

  • Responsibility is really lacking nowadays.

    There are cases of adults in a good place in their life due to good actions, despite a bad childhood, where there are adults in a bad place in their life due to bad actions, despite a good childhood. Parents can only do so much & it's up that child to learn from the moral lessons taught to them, or to cause mischief in their life. As for parents that are unfit, a child can always have some sort of adult role model standing for good or help from an outside source if ever needed. In the end, there are just certain things one should automatically know on the topic of right or wrong.


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Anonymous says2013-05-22T17:17:16.617
This was SO helpful! I'm writing a research paper on the where the blame falls for the decline in teen moralty; this gave me insight on my argument for sure. Perfection.
Anonymous says2013-06-01T16:04:09.053
I think parents do play a large part(not all) for their child's actions for the following reasons; Children spend most of their childhood with their parents until they turn an age where they can think for themselves. Be it beating the child or abusing or loving the child effects how the child reacts to things in their life. My parents brought me up to keep to myself and love everyone (although my dad as hypocritical) I learnt how to deal with things because of what my parents put me through. Some parents stay distant from their child and they end up getting close to friends and being influenced by them-this was in the end the parents responsibility. So my point is be it good or bad behaviour towards their child it does effect the childs actions a lot--until they grow up. I'm tired so sorry if this doesnt make sense and or bad grammar. I hope I made my point clear.