I think most people will encounter situations when teenage kids are acting awfully in public. It definitely seems to happen pretty regularly to me and people I’ve spoken to about it. This always seems to be the worst on public transport or places like the cinema.
Last night I saw one of the most shocking examples in my life. Two young white boys, about 12 and 15, spat on an Asian man at Canada Water station. In the moments when I was processing what I’d seen and working out what I could do about it, they ran down the length of the platform and got on the tube at the back. I thought that was the end of it, but at Canary Wharf they ran down to our carriage and spat on this guy again through the closing doors then gurned at him through the glass. I think I’m the only person who properly noticed what was happening.
I feel like I should have chased them down, but I don’t know what I would have done? My gut feeling was that they deserved a smack, but obviously that wasn’t the solution. Telling them off feels a bit redundant too, it’s hard for me to not assume that behaviour that appalling wasn’t influenced by the parents at some stage.
How have you reacted in similar circumstances?