Dog killed by children calls family into question

Children left to their own devices are capable of serious destruction.
Posted on July 8, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on July 8, 2013 at 12:27 p.m.

Emily Duchon

Something to Ponder

The Fourth of July is a rough time for me. I love celebrating our country and the brave men and women who have fought for it, but I do not love the availability of explosives, nor the fact that my neighbors will make them last for almost a week after the holiday.

Another firework-related aspect of the red-white-and-blue season that I do not enjoy is the number of people sent to the hospital. These injuries are usually brought on by individuals who do not take caution when handling explosives, or showboaters that pump up their displays without knowledge of what they are doing. However, Elkhart somehow managed to outdo itself this year when children essentially blew off the face of a dog. The kids threw lit fireworks at the dog, which picked one up in her mouth. She was immediately euthanized following the incident.

I want to know what is going to happen to these children, and where their parents were when they were throwing lit fireworks at a harmless animal.

I understand that small towns have little to provide in the way of entertainment, but not once in my life have I ever contemplated lighting up a firecracker and tossing it at a pet. I do not need to ask if these people are stupid, because the answer to that question is blatantly obvious.

Fireworks come with warnings and safety instructions for a reason, although you would think “Don’t throw this at live animals” would be a no-brainer. I hope the children were forced to look at what they did, and it would be nothing short of justice if they also had to be present for the euthanization. Because they were children, and because it was a dog they harmed rather than a person, the odds of legal action being taken are slim to none, which I genuinely wish was not the case. These children should face consequences like community service — perhaps working for the Humane Society in order to learn how to properly care for an animal.

While the children are clearly uneducated, their parents aren’t much brighter. Who leaves their children alone with powerful fireworks and just lets them have at it? If this is not the case and the parents were, in fact, being proper guardians and supervising their children, I would then like to know how someone looks on as their offspring lights and tosses an explosive at another living creature.

This family should have to answer for the dog’s death. If it were another child that had been injured, there would be all sorts of attention being paid to the case, and the family would have to pay for what they did. I don’t see why “the family will now face trial after being accused of animal abuse” did not end the story that ran on Saturday. Even though it may be “just an animal,” the crime these children committed was nothing short of murder.

I wish this family was never allowed to own or go near a pet again. It would surprise me if any of them actually tried to make up for their mistake, but then again, maybe nothing can surprise me anymore after discovering that children are capable of throwing explosives at an innocent animal.

Emily Duchon just completed her freshman year at Ball State University. She is an intern in The Elkhart Truth newsroom.

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