My little one wanted to go to the beach. His cuteness trumped democracy and we went to the beach instead of the park.
While there we witnessed a bullying incident I would classify as both assault and child abuse. A group of older children were repeatedly dragging a little boy through the water and pushing his head down under the waves. He was crying.
When I realized what was going on I yelled for them to stop and asked the people on the shore who was responsible for the teens? An older woman announced that she was and that the little boy was being justly punished for throwing sand into a teenage girl’s eyes.
I was appalled and shaken. In any other place I would have immediately called 911. Here, I am convinced they will not respond. I took my kids to our van and continued to eye the situation with the abusive family. I filmed the woman briefly and attracted her threats and fury. I did report the incident to the police but am unconvinced I did enough. I should have begun filming immediately and called 911 immediately. I think now that I should have waded into the water to physically intervene and asked the boy directly if he needed physical shelter. I should have stayed with him and insisted on intervention.
It was not enough. And now I will be forever haunted by a little boy, helpless among his own.