Thank You Judge Bogaard

When it comes to our judicial system in the United States, I am as cynical as they come. After all, someone once sued McDonald’s and won because McDonald’s had the audacity not to warn people that hot coffee would burn if you spill it on yourself.

Now, one of this week’s top headlines is an 18-year-old student in New Jersey who has sued her parents because they will not pay her college tuition (among other things).

I usually don’t praise judges but I am extremely thankful for Judge Peter Bogaard of Morris County (N.J.) Superior Court’s Family Division who wisely ruled against teenager Rachel Canning’s initial requests. He did, however, grant another hearing next month to consider some of her other charges.

While it appears to be a “her word versus their word” case, in essence the 18-year-old did not want to live in her parents’ house by their rules. She says they threw her out. They say she left.

The bottom line is this. Parents have every right to make rules for their house. Once a child reaches the legal adult age of 18 and does not want to abide by their parents’ rules, then he or she should leave.

Also, where does it say that parents “owe” their children a college education. Hopefully, most parents will want to help their children as much as possible, but sometimes they simply do not have the financial means to pay for college. I lived with my mother and grandparents when I graduated from high school. They could not afford to send me to college, but they allowed me to live in their house while I worked, saved my money, and attended college. By the same token, I was expected to adhere to certain rules while I lived in their house. And you know what, I didn’t think it should have been any other way. In the 1970s, that was to be expected.

We have raised a generation of young people who think they are entitled to the best that life has to offer. Many young people today (not all) expect things to be given to them on a silver platter. They need to awaken to reality or they will be disappointed the rest of their lives.

Often times we, as parents, bring trouble on ourselves when we don’t discipline our children or we give in to their “demands.” If children learn the meaning of the word “no” early in life, they will remember what it means the rest of their lives.

C.H. Spurgeon once said, “If we never have headaches through rebuking our children, we shall have plenty of heartaches when they grow up.”

Wise words, as is this admonition from Proverbs 22:6: “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

5 Responses to “Thank You Judge Bogaard”

  1. Todd Stinnett Says:

    Good words Lonnie. The entitlement culture is out of control. When it comes to our kids, we would probably be correct to blame ourselves for their entitled attitudes. If we never force our kids to learn the value of a dollar through hard work, why should we expect them to think and behave responsibly? We need to teach our children that we are creating opportunities for them. When they are of legal age, it’s between them and the Lord what they choose to do with the opportunities they’ve been given. Hopefully we will have discipled them well-enough that they will make Christ-honoring decisions.

  2. Ruby Brown Says:

    Thank you Judge Bogaard. I agree with your logic. Thank GOD that we do have a few level-headed Christian judges.

  3. Linda Morris Says:

    Kudos to Judge Bogaard for his decision. Parents should give their children love, respect and support, but they do not “owe” them a college education, a car, etc. I have three children and they all understand the word “no” and that if they want something they need to earn it. My youngest is still in high school, but my two oldest worked their way though college and paid for most of it themselves. My daughter even managed to buy a house at age 23. There is nothing wrong with working toward a goal.

  4. Scott Parkison Says:

    I agree with the judges decision and with the spirit of the article. However, please let me lovingly point out something. There is an underlying attitude towards younger generations that is sometimes not appreciated. The article said: “We have raised a generation of young people who think they are entitled to the best that life has to offer. Many young people today (not all) expect things to be given to them on a silver platter. They need to awaken to reality or they will be disappointed the rest of their lives.” These types of statements reflect a negativity towards “young people” as a whole. I hear this from older people in my church, at my local association, and in other places in the denomination. INDIVIDUALS who do not reflect the nature of Christ should be called out. But to speak negativity against an entire generation because one punk kid sued his parents is not well taken by the generation in question. If we desire to have an impact upon a generation…lets not speak of them in a pejorative manner. While I appreciate the “(not all)” disclaimer in the article…the fact remains…the writer has a negative view of the entire generation.

    • lonniewilkey Says:

      You make a valid point. I should have been more careful. I thought adding “not all” would suffice, but apparently that was not enough. I will try to be careful from now on about making blanket comments about a specific group of people. I appreciate your kind spirit.

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