Editorial: Tie one off

This month is when we have Red Ribbon Week, a time set aside for alcohol, tobacco, other drugs and violence prevention awareness. The campaign is observed in the United States every year in October.
Red Ribbon Week began after the kidnapping, brutal torture and murder of a DEA agent, Enrique “Kiki” Camarena in 1985. After the bodies of Camarena and his pilot, Alfredo Zavala-Avelar, were found, citizens in Camarena’s hometown of Calexico, Calif., donned red ribbons in Camarena’s honor. 
A California congressman and a teacher began a program dubbed “Camarena Clubs” in high schools in that state. From that point, it grew into the Red Ribbon Week campaign, now a nationwide service effort.
Officially, Red Ribbon Week is Oct. 23 – Oct. 31 this year. Glascock and Jefferson counties will observe it. Like so many efforts aimed at helping our children, we commend observance of this week regardless of when it is.
We know many kids have problems with alcohol, tobacco and other drugs. We also know many kids are involved in violent activities. Some of these are bullies. Some are victims; and, some are bystanders.
As with anything else, children pay more attention to what they see us do rather than what we tell them to do. 
If we want our children to be kind, we must show them kindness. Not just to others; but, to our children as well. We have to be kind. If we want our children to be drug-free, we must be drug-free.
If we want our children to stand up for themselves, we must show them how to do that; how to be assertive and not aggressive, how to view something from another standpoint than our own. 
We have to talk with our kids, not to them. Talking requires something many of us don’t do; and, that’s listening. They have to know they can tell us anything. They can tell us about that bully in school or that new kid in class who sits by himself and doesn’t interact with anyone.
Kids need to know the difference between right and wrong, especially about dangerous things – drugs, alcohol and violence. These things can ruin their lives. 
We want our children to grow up knowing there are consequences to their actions. It isn’t easy for a young person to understand that. We must do our best to help them understand; and, we applaud the efforts of all those who help us.