The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Friday August 12th

Harris Teeter shouldn’t be an overprotective parent


Needless to say, not everyone ascribes to the ideal of “self-control” (celibacy) that Mr. Spargo advocated in his letter to the editor, entitled, “Self-Control is the solution, not blaming Harris Teeter” (Sept. 14).

Here’s an analogy to illustrate the simplicity and naivety of the argument he presents: a 16-year-old who has been drinking (as some teenagers inevitably do) is debating between driving home drunk to make curfew and calling his parents to come pick him up.

On one hand, he can take a risk and in all likelihood end the night reprimand-free, with the side effect of endangering himself and those around him. On the other hand, he could make the safer, more responsible decision to call his parents.

Unfortunately, he might have parents who will lecture him, embarrass him or ground him upon the discovery that he drinks at all.

What type of parents would you prefer: those whose children feel comfortable calling them to prevent drunk driving or those who are too blinded by moral absolutes to make that option available?

Which would you prefer from our “sex-driven” culture: a society that implicitly discourages condom use by embarrassing teenagers at the grocery store or one mature enough to face the problems of STIs and unwanted pregnancies with a realistic assessment of human nature?

Harris Teeter should not be playing the role of the misguidedly overprotective parent.

Mark Hemphill
Applied Math, Physics

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