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The other day, I was called by the assistant principal of the high school where my 17-year-old son attends as a senior and told that my son was the victim of an assault. Talking at length about the matter, I learned that the young man who viciously attacked my son was handcuffed and taken to jail. While he was in jail, authorities discovered that this person was a felon wanted in another state (he had recently moved into this school district). Because he already had outstanding warrants for his arrest, he was extradited back to that state to stand trial.
Reflecting on the event, I was pleased that my son had the courage to try to be a peacemaker. He didn't know that this young man was a time bomb waiting to go off. My son survived with a bruise on his head, a broken thumb and a lesson he'll probably not soon forget. In the future, he will have to add discretion to his courage.
High school never used to be like this, at least not when I was growing up. Some young people today have more angst and anxiety than most parents can imagine. If it isn't the frustrated, misunderstood boy in a man's body, it could be the temptation to try some illegal drug or the latest party stimulant—not to mention the ever-present fixation on sex.
Living in such an environment, teens today need courage under fire, for surely right values are under attack wherever they turn. Perhaps the lack of clarity between good and evil dissipated when our courts prohibited God and the Bible from being discussed in the classroom. MTV has a stronger voice than God or the church in most teens' lives these days. Everyone, it seems, is focused on personal happiness. After all, we regularly hear that girls just want to have fun. And, of course, so do boys.
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Keywords: courage Princess Diana Mother Teresa teens and courage