12-year-olds playing unsupervised at the park

Apparently 43 percent of Americans now believe there should be a law against that [Lenore Skenazy] Happily, after years of advocacy from Skenazy (especially) and others, we’re seeing more written from the calmly rational side: “Why I let my children walk to the corner store — and why other parents should, too” [Petula Dvorak, Washington Post]

P.S. “Another Mom Behind Bars for Letting Kids Wait in Air-Conditioned Car” [Skenazy; Brandy Becksted, Ky.]


  • I’m flabbergasted . At 13 I went on overnight backpacking trips with no adults. Kids can’t play by themselves at 12?!

  • The times, they aren’t changing, they have! In 1941, my older sister need the services of an eye specialist in Brooklyn for weekly treatments, but we lived in Staten Island. The solution was for me to accompany her on the visits. This entailed leaving our grammar school one afternoon a week, taking the bus to the Staten Island ferry to Manhattan; board a subway to Brooklyn’s Borough Park section; return to Manhattan, take the ferry back to Staten Island and a train to our home. As I said, the year was 1941, my sister was nine and I was eight. Unthinkable in this day and age, but a solution arrived at by my parents, who, coincidentally, were both lawyers.

  • Are you kidding me? My daughter was a Red Cross Certified Babysitter at the age of 12!