Looking Out for Children

More than a few people in the world have left their money to a pet when they died. According to laws in the United States, however, you cannot leave money directly to pets, because they lack the capacity to acquire and hold property. You would think we could figure that out without the law.

This led me to wonder about the cost to humans when we spend more energy on animals than people. The great radio commentator Paul Harvey once described what he thought was wrong with our nation and what might be causing some of the internal collapse we’ve experienced over the years. What I heard him say is that parents need to be very responsible. They need to make sure they don’t treat their pets like children and their children like pets. I couldn’t agree more.

I get a little bothered when I realize there’s more information on the news about how to take care of animals than how to take care of children. Certainly I am one who appreciates and loves animals and have had a few of my own, but I would never value an animal more than a child.

One thing we can all do today is make sure that we’re looking around and paying attention to the importance of caring for children. As an act of kindness, you might pick up a stray animal and take it to a shelter.  Let me also encourage you to watch for children who might be neglected, abandoned, or abused. If that’s not occurring, look for a child who needs a kind word or thoughtful gesture—something they may not be getting at home. In your own family, make sure you are spending at least as much time with your children as you are with your pet.

This all takes commitment on our part to reach out and care, but if you’re willing, you might just help curtail some of the demise of children that seems to be happening across our nation. I certainly believe in taking care of animals, but let’s be sure we are barking up the right tree.