In response to the widely reported rape and murder of a two-year-old, allegedly at the hands of a 19-year-old Tacoma resident who was dating the child's mother, the News Tribune's editorial board chides single moms, warning that they should think twice before leaving their children alone with boyfriends who aren't related to their babies.
Lamenting the "decline of marriage" and citing a "lack of maturity" among many men, the TNT scolds, "Introducing a boyfriend into a single mother’s home can increase a child’s risk of abuse or death."
Rape and violent murder—the child was killed by blunt-force trauma to the head and abdomen, not shaking—is, according to the TNT, a "classic example" of what happens when boyfriends aren't ready to "take on the responsibility of being father figures to a partner’s offspring."
But it isn't just the mother's fault for failing to "be aware that a boyfriend ... may not be the best child-care option." It's also the child's. "When children behave as children sometimes do, the boyfriend may react by shaking, striking or otherwise harming the child."