As parents, we want our children to be independent, have the ability to grow wings, and confidently soar out into the world on their own. It's also our role as parents to ensure we give our children the tools to do this successfully. For a Florida man, this was clearly not the case. His approach to teaching his young son to fly out on his own was both dangerous, and inexcusable.
A father from Florida was recently arrested after allegedly getting drunk, and throwing his five year old son into the ocean with the attempt to teach him how to swim. According to witness Mitch Brown, who also happens to be a former Georgia State Trooper, saw the events unfold while vacationing with his family. After spotting a small child trying to stay above the water, he noticed that nobody else seemed willing to help, including the child's father. Finally, he couldn’t take it any longer and decided to intervene.
“So I went down to the pier, down to the shore and confronted him myself,” Brown told WESH 2 News. “The little kid was out here by himself. Completely by himself. There was nobody around him. No adults.” Brown continued by stating that he watched the child's father, John Bloodsworth, throw him into the ocean while yelling at him to learn how to swim, leaving the young boy struggling to stay above waves.
Bloodsworth was arrested, and has been charged with child abuse, along with a charge for disorderly intoxication in public.
.#daytonabeach man accused of throwing 5 y/o boy in ocean & leaving him there, to teach him to swim. @VolusiaBeach officers arrested John Bloodsworth, who they say was drunk, at Main Street Pier. Witnesses say child cried & struggled while suspect repeatedly jumped off pier. pic.twitter.com/as1nCr3T9c— claire metz (@clairemetzwesh) July 16, 2019
Allegedly, Bloodsworth stated that he was “going to jail for being awesome.”
We think not, Johnny Boy. The only awesome person in this situation is Brown. For not only stepping in, and helping rescue the young boy, but for ensuring that Bloodsworth was held accountable for his deplorable actions.
According to the USA Swimming Foundation, ten people die every day from drowning, and Florida leads the country in drowning deaths of children between the ages of one to four years old. It’s also important to note that no child is ever completely water safe. The goal of swim lessons is to make children safer. But, it is imperative to ensure children aren’t left unattended, are given the appropriate skills, and that they understand the risks associated with being in and around the water.