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Rant with Randi: Ding-dong ditch & done

Randi Crawford
Randi Crawford

Did you ever play ding-dong ditch when you were growing up? I did. My husband did. If you’ve never heard of it, here’s how it works: You run up to someone’s door, ring the doorbell, and run like hell before you get caught. It’s fairly simple, innocent and fun to do once in a while. Or I should say, it used to be simple, innocent and fun. I can’t stress enough how crazy it is raising kids today because nothing is simple, innocent and fun anymore. Everything is planned, contrived, and put on social media. If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it 100 times, it’s not easy growing up today and I’m so happy that I grew up when I did.

I heard about a story recently that involved a group of kids who were playing ding-dong ditch and it went south pretty quickly. I’m a parent, and I get it that when someone ding-dong ditches your house late at night, it can be frightening, jarring, and really scare you. Especially if you are in a deep sleep and a bunch of kids are running around your property and banging on your door. It can also be annoying if it happens more than once. Not to mention kids today are very entitled and think they can get away with anything. So trust me when I say, I get it that this can grate on your nerves and force you to eventually call the cops to put an end to it (even if that’s not in your nature). Kids don’t fear adults, they talk back, they use foul language and they are incredibly disrespectful towards adults. All that said, it does not excuse what happened with this particular game of ding-dong ditch, but let’s see what you think.

A group of boys went ding-dong ditching and one of the boys got caught. The kid that actually got caught wasn’t even doing the ding-dong ditching, but he was definitely, “as they say,” in the wrong place at the wrong time! Still, the homeowner physically grabbed this boy by the collar, and dragged him into his home. All the other boys took off running and this one kid not only got caught, but he was taken into a stranger’s house. One of the other boys came back for his friend when he heard the screams and, to me, that says a lot about that kid’s character. Who wants to enter the home of a pissed off stranger late at night? Not me.

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The man called the boy’s mother and told her that he had her son because he caught him ding-dong ditching him, and he proceeded to hang up on her before she knew where he lived. Gasp, how dare he! Now I don’t know about you, but if I received a call like that, and didn’t know where my son was, but some stranger had them in their home late at night, I’d be dialing 911 (Oh, and then I’d need to be put in a straight jacket). The homeowner called the cops, and the mother eventually met up with her son. When the cops arrived, here was their message to the boys: Unfortunately, life is not how it used to be and the world isn’t as simple. People have the right to protect themselves and late at night, when it’s dark outside, if someone hears a noise, they may take out a gun and shoot you. Can you imagine? Sadly, that’s the world we live in. Another thing to consider is that when you are darting back and forth on the road at night, a car could easily hit you.

I recognize that the homeowner was angry, but grabbing a child and dragging him into his home? I just can’t understand what would make anyone think it’s OK to do that. You never touch anyone’s child, ever! I’m having an incredibly difficult time understanding how the homeowner didn’t get into any trouble because, personally, I would be pressing charges until he was in jail. This story bothers me on so many levels. Life isn’t as simple. If your kid goes out to have some innocent fun, they could either get shot, hit by a car or kidnapped...no thanks!

What say you? Email me at www.randiccrawford.com


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