There have been several reports of parents using their children to ask strangers for money in local stores and gas stations. Not only is this a shameless tactic, it's also a hustle.

These days it's far too easy for attention-hungry drama queens to post some bulls--- to Facebook just to get likes. We've seen a significant uptick in this of late in local cases of allegedly missing persons and human trafficking scams, a few of which even wasted police resources which are already in short supply. It is because of this trend that I'm a little more hesitant to write about unconfirmed local happenings that come from Facebook. However, in cases like this where multiple people are confirming similar incidents, I tend to pay a little closer attention.

Like, I said, this is all based unconfirmed reporting from area residents, so take it with a grain of salt. It never hurts to be informed though, and based on the comments -- there's probably a lot of truth to the following story.

As a parent, I think that's about as low as you can get. Using your children, who only know that something is wrong if you teach them that it is, to exploit the kindness of strangers and take their hard-earned money. These people ought to be ashamed of themselves.

It's one thing being in a tough spot and needing to rely on the kindness of strangers to get out of it. Trust me, I've been there. It's a completely different thing when you are repeatedly doing this to make money. There's even a name for it -- it's called a "hustle." Sure, it's funny when Eddie Murphy does stuff like this in 80s movies, but it's not the 80s, this isn't a movie, and those kids are not Eddie Murphy.

I'm not saying you shouldn't give money to people in need. Hell, I wouldn't suggest you take any kind of life advice from me. I just a regular dude. I'm merely letting you know what people are saying is happening in our community and saying that if it were my money -- I'd want it to go to people that actually need it rather than some two-bit hustlers preying on people's sympathies.