The Rights of a Child

At what point does an adolescent lose his individuality, his family, and his being to become one of the masses, the nameless homeless? A student of mine passed last week. Because both of his parents were in jail and no one had been formally assigned guardianship or foster care, he was declared homeless by the nameless government, cremated and ashes sent off to be “taken care of” with no care taken to look to find out if anyone would have been willing to do anything else for him. The students and teachers who loved him were not given the opportunity to have closure.

The funeral home was called repeatedly. They were expecting his body to come their way, but it never showed up. Finally, the coroner was called, but they were too late. My student’s body had already been cremated. No family was contacted because according to them, he was homeless. He had local family, but they were not close. He had friends who would have raised the money. He had teachers who would have footed the bill, but as a whole, no one was contacted because someone in authority declared him homeless.

Today, I’ve been going in and out of outrage, depression, and shock at what just happened to a child. At what point did we as a society declare that it is acceptable to throw away our children, even if it’s only their remains?


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. margaretmathews
    Oct 21, 2014 @ 09:58:12

    That is truly despicable.The indifference some of us show to such happenings is baffling!!!


    • Quietude's Junction
      Oct 21, 2014 @ 16:49:04

      It truly shocked me that people cared so little about a kid. I know that its a societal flaw and runs for all generations, but I’m a teacher. Kids are who I love and who I teach. For me, children of all ages should be cherished. I still have difficulties understanding how anyone could basically sum up a life by saying “He’s homeless, therefore worthless to everyone.” He had people that loved him, that mourned him and continue to remember him. I still walk down the hallways and swear I see his smile flashing every now and then.


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