Atlantic City Mayor Marty Smalls Sr. was talking about the crime in his town when he said it but after seeing what's been going on in New Jersey these last few weeks, his words could benefit the entire state.

"As I stated the other day, it takes a village and that village starts with a community," says Mayor Smalls. "People wanted to play politics and be critical of a comment that I made saying everyone police their own homes, I mean it, I'm going to say it again. This is a call for the community. All levels of government do not raise your children. Police your homes collectively, let's police our community. The government is here to assist, create programming and opportunities."

When you see thousands of teenagers showing up at Long Branch Pier Village jumping on cars and wreaking havoc, so much so that not only Long Branch but other towns are cancelling their July 4 fireworks, a move I disagree with.

Then in Glen Rock we have students getting so rowdy after graduation that they stop train service and destroy a statue of the school mascot. These are just some examples of the "mob rules" mentality that's been overwhelming New Jersey in recent weeks. When did parents lose control over their children to the point off this kind of recklessness? How can they get it back?

Damage at Glen Rock High School
Damage at Glen Rock High School (Glen Rock Police)

As the father of two 14-year-old boys, it's my job to make sure that my sons would never even think of participating in these kinds of things. It starts with a conversation, talking about how they feel about what's going on in their world, education, understanding why it's wrong, consideration of other people and their property, and discipline as in the consequences they will suffer for their wrongdoing.

The government can't raise our children but I do think they should let the police bust minors for drugs and alcohol. That would be a big help but It starts in the home.  It starts with the parents. Here's hoping it ends there, for our sake as well as our children's.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise. Any opinions expressed are Steve's own. Steve Trevelise is on New Jersey 101.5 Monday-Thursday from 7pm-11pm. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.

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