No, 12-year-old evildoers aren't 'adults'

No, 12-year-old evildoers aren’t ‘adults’

To read this article on the Chicago Tribune website, click here.

Almost as shocking as the accusation that two 12-year-old girls from near Milwaukee stabbed a friend nearly to death Saturday was the news that authorities are charging the girls as adults.

Adults? Anyone who has ever lived with 12-year-olds — and my wife and I have reared three — knows that they’re impulsive, naive and malleable by nature. Delightful as they can be, you wouldn’t trust them to vote, drive, carry guns, have sex or drink alcohol responsibly. You wouldn’t leave them home alone for a weekend.

Because they’re children.

They lack the temperament, maturity, life experience and independent judgment we expect of adults. They are especially susceptible to whim and peer pressure. Even the best of them say and do stupid things.

And yes, the worst of them say and do horrific things.