In one of the latest and most shameful examples of parents behaving badly, a kindergarten play had to be cancelled recently after parents got into a fight over their seats.
Police were called to Hans Christensen Middle School in Menifee, Calif. just before 7 p.m. on March 23 because there was a dispute “regarding seating and viewing privileges” during the performance, The Press Enterprise reported.
More than 300 people attended the play, which was put on by kindergarteners from Ridgemoor Elementary School. Riverside County Sheriff’s Deputy Michael Vasquez told the newspaper that audience members got upset after some attendees “walked to the front row and began filming” the play.
Parents started arguing and the situation soon became violent, including pushing and shoving. The fight ultimately led to the cancellation of the performance and police getting involved. No arrests were made but one citation was issued and police are still investigating.
“Yeah, it’s kind of shocking,” Vasquez told the Washington Post, “Sometimes adults act in funny ways.”
We’re not sure we’d use the word “funny” to describe grown-ups pushing and shoving each other in front of 5-year-olds, but we get the point. There’s just no explanation for this sort of behavior among parents at a school event.
Most of us have experienced the occasional mom or dad at a dance recital or school concert who thinks it’s OK to stand the whole time, block someone else’s view with their iPad or save a whole row of seats for other people. Is it really ever worth more than an eye roll, though?
And of course it’s inevitable that a parent or two might head to the stage to get a close-up photo during their child’s performance. Annoying as it may be for those who showed up early for a good seat or who simply understand what a mess it would be if everyone did the same thing, it’s just not worth picking a fight over.
It’s sad to think how those kids must have felt, watching a brawl unfold among their parents instead of getting the chance to show off their hard work.
We all want the opportunity to capture our children’s special events with good photos. If some parents are so blinded by their excitement or pride that they leave their manners behind, let’s give them a pass – for the sake of the kids.
After all, unless you show up to these events super early to get the best seats, your photos will probably include the phones, cameras and backs-of-heads of a whole bunch of other people. Invest in a zoom lens, ask the organizers to record the event and distribute DVDs or just do what sane parents everywhere have always done: exercise some patience, put on a smile and enjoy the moment.
What do you think of the incident? Have you ever seen parents behave this badly at a children’s event? Tell us in the comments.