There have always been those who do that. Street urchins in jolly old England, children and youth running the streets of American cities from back then to today. Children/youth going out on their own as young as 12 or 13 (and other on their own even younger); it was once fairly common for some between 12 and their later teens to lie about their age and join the army or navy or get work on the railroad. Until the beginning of the 20th century when laws were passed against child labor, young children were common in the factories of America even as they had been in other industrial nations.
In the 20th century children, especially in the Western nations, were elevated to virtual special status which was something new. In some ways the view of children among some is starting to swing back the other way. For many, children are viewed as a bother, something to tolerate or exploit or virtually ignore.
Our society and laws send mixed messages; such as telling pregnant women they shouldn't smoke or drink alcohol because it's not good for the baby they are carrying, but it's just fine for them to abort the fetus, that baby which is suddenly just a lump of tissue like a cancer when they decide to have an abortion. The government tells parents they are responsible for raising their children but then arrest them, put them under court supervision or take their children away when they try to raise them right.
The government has long complained about "latchkey children" but they continue to pass laws and regulations which serve to undermine families and push women into the workforce...along with their own propaganda which strives to push women into the workforce, convince women to put career over family, to not worry about consequences of sleeping around because they can get an easy (sometimes even free) abortion. Then the government pours millions and then billions of dollars into "youth centers" and "youth activities" as their solution to neglected children running loose.
In all of this, the government, media, TV/movie industry and many regular folks (both saved and unsaved) lash out at and denounce Christian parents who attempt to raise their children in accord with Scripture.