It's an unfortunate fact: It only takes a couple of morons to ruin a good thing for everyone else.

Tired of packs of teens bothering shoppers, the York Galleria a year ago banned youths from the mall on Friday and Saturday evenings unless they were accompanied by adults.

Tough? Yes, it is.

But tough luck.

The mall had tried to address the problem with increased security, according to the general manager, but that didn't faze the teens, who continued their unruly behavior.

We all know what the next step is; we learned it in pre-school. One kid eats the glue, none of us can use it unsupervised.

Unfortunately, it seems the kids who acted up at the Galleria didn't shape up; they simply shipped out.

To the West Manchester Mall.

West Manchester Township Police say the Galleria's policy had the unintended effect of shifting the problem to the west-side mall, where officers began spending more and more time babysitting teens whose only aim seemed to be to bother shoppers.

As we've seen, when problems arise between shoppers and rowdy teens, malls tend not to ban the shoppers.

About a month ago, the West Manchester Mall's new management followed the Galleria's lead -- and then some. Those under 18 are not allowed in the shopping center without an adult ... ever.

That does sound extreme, especially for a struggling mall one would think couldn't afford to turn anyone away.


On the other hand, maybe that's exactly why the new policy makes sense.

Texas-based M&R Investors, which bought the West Manchester Mall in September for $17.5 million, sees potential there and intends to turn it around as it's done at other properties -- by increasing the occupancy rate and generating more foot traffic.

If one impediment to both can be eliminated with something as simple as a minor escort policy, well, that's just good business.

And remember, they are running a business -- not a babysitting service. The mall is private property, not a public playground.

It's too bad for what's likely a majority of kids who learned manners growing up and know how to act in public.

But they can thank glue-eating pals for the new restrictions.