April 6, p 2
Child protection services have opted not to take a 4-year-old boy from his parents in Malang, East Java, despite their encouragement of his smoking habit.
Mulud Riadi, 52, and his wife Moedjiati, 41, had been threatened with having their son taken away to Jakarta for rehabilitation by the National Commission for Child Protection.
Despite his age, the child is a chain smoker and swears — habits instilled in him by his parents.
The commission initially planned to place him under the custody of the Social Services Ministry in Jakarta for treatment. On Monday, commission head Seto Mulyadi met with Mulud and Moedjiati at their home in Malang to discuss the rehabilitation program for their son.
The parents should be arrested for child abuse and neglect. They should be a good role model for their child. It is sad to know that these people behave this way.
I find this extremely shocking! It has been proven that smoking kills and for parents to allow this is not acceptable. Somebody should do something about it!
Bapak Seto Mulyadi claims that children between the ages of 4 and 9 made up about 1.9 percent of Indonesia’s total population of smokers. He also stated that the 4 year-old boy who started smoking at age 19 months, now a chain smoker, has a “normal psychological profile”.
When the boy’s parents ask him to stop smoking, he throws a fit and starts swearing. Bapak Seto also maintains that the environment the boy is growing up in is not so bad. So, a family environment where a 19-month-old child is allowed to smoke is acceptable? Children between 4 and 9 make up 1.9 percent of the “smoking population” in Indonesia; that is around 1,000,000 children!
Another article in The Jakarta Post makes us believe that smoking is a matter of choice. Since when does a 19-month-old child make his own decision to smoke? Since when do parents ask a 19-month-old child to stop something he should not do? Are we not losing sight of the responsibilities of the parents; but also the community, the schools, mosques, churches and political parties.
If these social institutions are incapable of setting acceptable norms, what is the role of these institutions? Are we to believe that the profit aspects of growing tobacco and manufacturing/selling cigarettes is the most important aspect rather than the health of a smoker and the millions who have to endure, without much of a choice, the smoke of smokers? I think that the child should be taken into “protective custody” and weaned of his bad habits.
The parents must be taken to court for allowing their child to smoke. The cigarette company must be prosecuted for allowing third parties to sell/use tobacco products to a 19-month-old child. A class-action suit must be filed against tobacco companies for selling tobacco products to around 1 million children between 4- and 9-year-old.
If they had given him a piece of ham to eat, there would have been more cries to have him removed.