I love this meme of pictures going around lately. They're funny because they're so true, of course.
How many times do we see parents complain about how hard-to-handle their kids are, all while being too self-absorbed in their own world to realize that they are the problem. Whether it's being too focused on your smartphone during family time, or it's being too focused on your ______ (fill in the blank with work/self/hobby/etc) during your family's life, there are *usually* (not always) really controllable reasons why your kids are acting up or having problems in life. At least, that's been my experience.
It's just all too common and easy these days to blame other things. We've come up with endless excuses to avoid taking responsibility ourselves. We blame the schools, Hollywood, rap music, TV shows, their peers...and when we run out of those, we chalk it up to kids being kids.
And it's not to say those aren't all real problems or influences — some of them very serious ones. But when we allow those things to excuse our own negligent parenting, they become harmful distractions.
What I know is this: Every time my kid is misbehaving, the surest remedy has almost every time been an immediate entering into his world with a singular focus and attention. That - or club crackers. One of the two works every time.
Update: P.S. This post is supposed to inspire *personal* reflection (particularly if you have kids). it was not supposed to encourage unfair judgment of other people's kids of which you could not possibly know their full circumstances and personal battles.