22 December 2008

A Scarred Childhood

This is an old article, but it's one I hadn't seen before.

To give you the background, I was looking for a better image of a photo I shamelessly stole from Hammer because I thought it was funny. It's in the top left corner of his banner, but it's a low-res photo now. It used to be a high-res photo, which would be OK to put on a blog post. The low-res photo is just too small. Somewhere along the line I've misplaced it.

During my search, I came upon the article.

The article was a good reason to find the photo.

I have to say that I'm stunned. What kind of a world have we created when a kids show is too dangerous to show the kids? What kind of meterosexual little pansies are we raising?

Cookie Monster is bad because he has a cookie habit? Hello!?!? COOKIE Monster?????

Oscar the Grouch is bad because he's a grouch????? Like we have never known anyone like that before?

It's my firm opinion that we are doing our kids no favors by trying to shield them from reality. We try to convince them that the world is a nice shiny place filled with fuzzy bunnies. It's not. What we get is a bunch of self-centered narcissistic little bastards who think the world revolves around them, and when they get their ADD infested selves into the real world they are stunned and butt-hurt that a) no one cares and b) everyone is in fact making fun of you behind your back. Deal with it.

Sesame Street encouraged kids to read and count. What could be better? Today's mindless pap teach our kids to be visually oriented, but doesn't teach them basics. What's worse is that today's mindless pap also teaches our kids that some things are right and proper, when we as parents would like them to know that they aren't.

Of course a large part of the blame rests squarely on the parents. The kids today are being raised by the X-box and the TV with little parental supervision. As long as they are being quiet and not bugging us we don't care what the little buggers are doing.

My parents could get away with that. We had Pong and Sesame Street. Today's parents can't. My parents sent me outside for the entire day. We lived in a small town, and today's worries of the kids getting snatched off the streets and killed for entertainment was unknown then.

I have a theory that the world has always been a pretty messed up place, but until we had the Internet and CNN we didn't hear about it as much. Things then stayed more local news, but now everything is national. But I digress.

The sad thing is that the more we hear about these things on the national news, the more we want to shield our kids from the ugliness. It's natural I guess, but I think we can find a lot worse things to expose our kids to than the Cookie Monster.

Om nom nom nom nom!


AnnieMcPhee said...

The Cookie Monster debacle is part of the mythconception, the obesity epi-panic hoax. If kids eat a - gasp! - cookie they'll get teh fatz. Children all over this country and others are literally being UNDERFED and malnourished in order to avoid the spectre of teh fatz. (This is all with official OK and by design; the NIH and other agencies force this shit with a heavy hand, and it all flies straight in the face of real facts and real studies, but no matter.)

"I have a theory that the world has always been a pretty messed up place, but until we had the Internet and CNN we didn't hear about it as much. Things then stayed more local news, but now everything is national."

Actually I think that's a good point and I've long believed the same thing. Unfortunately for me I grew up just outside NYC and I happened to hear a whole lot of horror on my local news lol. So while I did get to play outside all day, it was definitely only in my own yard and I wasn't allowed to venture a foot outside it. Fortunately it was fairly large. Other kids got to play with each other though. Sigh.

I tried to take a pragmatic approach with my kids, between shielding them to some degree and also letting them know what goes on. All I know is I did the best I could; who's to say. Neither one's ever been in jail, I guess that's good.

Larry said...

I grew up in the Midwest, and if you were inside it was a horrible day (including being in school, of course).
All you can do is your best, and you hope that's good enough. It's a fine line to walk, but it's funny that you often find yourself doing the same thing your parents did.
You remember, the things you swore you would never do when you had kids of your own...yeah, they make a lot more sense now, don't they?
Thanks for dropping by Annie!