Today I realized that I was officially “old”. Not old and creaky needing help with a cane, but officially an “old” person – by definition, no longer young. Today I called the police on a teenager smoking marijuana.
This morning as I was getting my kids into the car for school I saw a girl driving down the street leaning over and using her hands to light a pipe. What appeared to be a marijuana pipe.
I’m no prude – i understand that teenagers use marijuana and some people believe it’s not a big deal. I know that there have been issues with drugs in the local school districts. I wasn’t even shocked that it was happening. I was angry.
I’m not going to argue about whether or not it should be legalized or if it should be legalized for medicinal purposes. For me, this is about a teenager driving down my residential street with my kids outside while she is using both hands to smoke a drug that will result in her being “under the influence”. This is about safety.
At first I was going to run into the street and yell at her, but instead I got her license plate number and got the kids to school. I called my husband to talk about what we should do – this is our neighborhood after all and it’s our kids we’re talking about.
I went through the pros and cons of calling the police.
Pros to calling the police:
- She certainly won’t drive down my street doing that anymore – so my kids will be safer.
- She needs to realize that she’s not invincible and that she can get in trouble and/or hurt.
- If I did nothing but yell at her she would just drive down someone else’s street and endanger other people.
- Someone brazen enough to do something like this in front of other people (i.e me on my front lawn with my children) obviously doesn’t care about social norms and is likely to need a stronger push to change behavior.
Cons of calling the police:
- I don’t believe that involving the police is necessarily the answer to every situation.
- I certainly don’t want a childish mistake to upset her future.
- I live in a drug free school zone area - if she were to be caught with drugs she could face serious punishment.
- I’d be that person.
In the end, safety has won out. I can’t in good conscience allow her to drive recklessly around the streets potentially endangering my neighbors, family and friends. I can’t allow someone who is willing to smoke marijuana while driving within walking distance or an elementary, middle and high school get away without consequences.
Yes, I am officially old. I am turning a teenager into the police. I only hope she actually learns a lesson from this and that it saves her from having something worse happen.
Cross your fingers.