When in Rome…Don’t Drag Your Baby! » Teeny Manolo

When in Rome…Don’t Drag Your Baby!

By Glinda

An Alabama woman (presumably) vacationing in Rome was arrested for felony first-degree cruelty to children because she was dragging her son through a store while he was still hooked into his “child harness” or as some people like to call them, “human leash.”

I try not to judge other parents. Stop laughing. Seriously, I do. I have been down the hard road of the two’s, and the even thornier path of the three’s. I have probably done some things that other people would label as mean, even though I considered it tough love to march out of a store carrying a kicking and screaming toddler who was of course unable to listen to reason.

I do sort of have a problem with the kid leashes, because I think that it teaches both parent and child to rely on an artificial device to teach boundaries, when it should be a shared lesson in communication. However, it might work for people with disabilities or elderly grandparents, so I try to keep Judgy McJudgerson in check when I see them.

Unfortunately, this video has no sound, so we don’t know if the child was screaming at ear-piercing decibels the entire time, and if that was the case, I’m sort of in her court because I hate when parents subject everyone else to their children’s tantrums as if it were a matter of course. The only way to deal with the tantrums is to do what you have to do while ignoring the screams.

But I have to admit, this tape certainly doesn’t look good, and according to the source, the woman is still in jail, being held without bail.

Too harsh? Or just right?

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8 Responses to “When in Rome…Don’t Drag Your Baby!”

  1. galadrium Says:

    I would want audio before rendering judgement.

  2. La Petite Acadienne Says:

    I think kid leashes have their place. A shared lesson in communication is not always feasible when you’re in a crowded (or high-traffic) place and your child is in that unreasonable “Mama! Want DOWN!” toddler age.

    But to just hold their hand is insufficient, as it a) makes you stoop over constantly, and b) is way too easy for their tiny hand to slip out of yours.

    My sister brought her small son to see the Tall Ships festival back in 2000, when he would have been about three years old. The waterfront was incredibly crowded. Her husband (who didn’t accompany her on this little excursion) was adamantly against the kid leash (“Our kid isn’t a DOG!”) However, wee Ryan was determined that he wanted to walk, so the entire time, she was either hunched over while holding his hand, or chasing after him after he had slipped out of her grasp, or carrying him while he squirmed and kicked and protested. Both mother and son were miserable. In that situation, I think the kid leash would have solved the problem quite neatly. And my husband and I both agree that when our kid is at that age, if we’re going anywhere crowded, or where there is a danger of the child making a quick dash onto the road, the kid leash is definitely an option, judgmental stares be damned.

    As far as the mother in the video goes? No problem with the kid leash, but a serious problem with the dragging. That’s not cool. If he was having a fit, she could have picked him up and carried him out.

  3. Pencils Says:

    I don’t have a problem with leashes–I believe in teaching children boundaries, and to be respectful, etc., but some kids are just going to run off no matter what you do. A leash is a lot better than a lost child, or worse, a hurt child. That said, that woman should never have dragged that poor child like that. When I read “dragged” I assumed the kid had his feet on the ground and his mom was pulling him. The video was really fast, but I didn’t realize he was down and being dragged along the ground. That IS child abuse. He’s young enough that the mother should have picked him up and carried him out. Period. There’s no excuse for what she did, and it doesn’t really have anything to do with the leash–parents like that will abuse their kids in whatever way they can. The leash just allowed her to drag him like that, otherwise I bet she would have hurt him some other way. You don’t drag a child like that unless you don’t care if he or she gets hurt. Or unless you’re hoping the child gets hurt. Which is just sick.

  4. enygma Says:

    I was at the zoo on Sunday and I saw several kids with the leashes. While this wasn’t my first time seeing them, this was the first time that they seemed absolutely necessary. Because the weather was fantastic and the zoo admission was free, it was absolutely packed, which made it very difficult to walk around freely, especially inside some of the buildings where the animals are.
    Though I don’t have children of my own, I have a 2-year old cousin who is very energetic and in the phase where he has to run everywhere and it’s difficult to keep track of him at a nearly deserted carnival, let alone a crowded zoo. So I would support the parents who use the leashes, but not the ones who use them to drag their children. Like the above commentors mentioned, the child was small enough for the mother to pick up and carry out of there.

  5. Sarah G. Says:

    At the age of two my eldest was a total car nut, the leash saved his life a number of times when he would just up and run towards cars. His younger brother didn’t need it, so we didn’t use it. Then we had twins and it was invaluable to have leashes on them when we went on trips.

    As for the video, that does not look good. She is dragging the child very fast and for a long time. That was a very bed example of leash use.

  6. class factotum Says:

    I don’t have kids, so my opinion is not really valid, but I don’t have a problem with leashes (or playpens, for that matter) but I wouldn’t do that to my cats, much less to a child. This has nothing to do with the leash and everything to do with Bad Behavior and cruelty.

  7. gemdiva Says:

    No problem with the leashes. My son was at “leash” age back in the 70s when they weren’t all that prevalent. The day I discovered it was a day of new found freedom for me and my son. He felt like he was in charge and had more freedom to explore and I felt like I still could keep him squarely in my sights and be free from worry in crowds. This actually prevented screaming matches. Also, the harness for the leash could also be hooked to the seat in a shopping cart to prevent climbing out and tipping over incidents. No seat belts in carts in those days. Anyway, as the Marquis de Sade once said “I am an advocate of leashes”. 🙂

  8. ChristianeF Says:

    In the interest of full disclosure, I don’t have kids. That said, I’m not against harnessing a child that needs harnessing in order to keep them from running out in traffic. But this is… pretty much sick. The child doesn’t even appear to be moving while she’s dragging him, even when his head seems to hit a partition. That’s really disturbing.

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