I understand there’s been some controversy about the baby born New Year’s day to teenage parents Mercedes and Joey. Some of the comments: “shouldn’t be celebrated” and “Central Maine Newspapers is irresponsible for publishing this story.”

Yes, the parents are young. Yes, it isn’t the ideal situation, but it is reality. How dare we decide which births should/shouldn’t be celebrated? What does this say about society? Frankly, those people’s attitudes disgust me.

Every child should be celebrated, regardless of which walks of life the parents come from. Every child is a precious gift, every birth a miracle.

The fact that this child was born to teens should make adults want to support them. We should pass our knowledge on to them so they become confident parents, finish school and become productive members of society, rather being doomed from day one because of hate mail at a very influential age.

Every year, the first baby of the year gets a story; whether parents are young, old, rich or poor has never been an issue.

If Mercedes and Joey were in their 30s, but had been in and out of jail, or drug addicts, their baby’s birth wouldn’t have been a discussion, because the general public wouldn’t have known the details. It would be assumed they would be good parents.

My point is, just because these two are young, doesn’t mean they won’t be good parents. The birth of their child should be celebrated.

Shame on people for their negative words.

Mercedes and Joey should use the harsh criticisms to strengthen them as parents and prove their critics wrong. They should love their son as if they were no different from any other parent out there.

Times will get tough, but they get tough for 30-year-old parents, too.

Natalie Breton

Parrish, Fla.

formerly of Augusta