A sensible decision

August 5, 2011
By

As a parent I know I have a responsibility to protect my child (not that he’s a child any more … he’s a fully fledged, hairy young man).

When he was just a wee fella, my most important mission in life was to ensure he was happy and healthy. But, as is often the case, there were times when he managed to evade all my best intentions and injure himself anyway and the result was skinned knees or a bruise or two.

Auckland dad Aarush Macwan had a momentary lapse of attention that resulted in the most awful thing any parent could imagine: the death of his son. I’m sure you’ve all read about the case of the family holidaying in Central Otago, stopping their van at Lake Dunstan and the driver/father forgetting to apply the handbrake. That the van then rolled into the lake with a two-year-old boy strapped into his car-seat is surely the stuff of nightmares for any parent.

His dad was charged with to careless driving causing death and I suppose that’s a reasonable outcome for what happened.

That he was today discharged without conviction is an even more reasonable outcome.

Yes, he wasn’t 100% attentive and that lack of attention caused the death of his son, but it’s fairly obvious that he had no intention of doing harm to his child. I’m sure there’s not a parent out there who hasn’t at some point lost focus or not paid quite as much attention as they should have. And I’m sure we all feel incredibly lucky that our children didn’t pay the ultimate price for that.

I understand the police made their rather fast decision to charge Aarush Macwan based on facts and not emotion but what about those parents out there who do purposely choose to put their children at risk? The mothers who allow their partners/boyfriends to bash their children then claim they had no idea it was happening when those little victims become statistics? Why aren’t they being charged with their crimes?

And yes, I can hear to do-gooders out there bleating on about how these women are downtrodden, that they don’t have a voice, that they aren’t able to break the cycle of violence. But the do-gooders need to stop wringing their hands and finding ways of deflecting the blame from those who allow their children to be abused and instead find ways of protecting those children.

We’ve all had bad relationships, some of us have been in violent relationships. Some of us were sensible enough to walk away.

Interesting, isn’t it: an obviously loving dad shows true remorse for his moment of inattention and ends up in court. Meanwhile, there’s still no justice for Chris and Cru Kahui.

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Jillian "George" Allison-Aitken

I live in the deep south of New Zealand, where smelly dairy cows are taking over from sheep in the livestock stakes. My hometown is the small but perfectly formed city of Invercargill, which is also the hometown of the original boy racer, Burt Munro. Find out more about me here.

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