Saturday, January 30, 2016

Why you shouldn't raise kids.

I saw this meme on Facebook. It was shared from an education website called Clever Classroom.

The promise I have with it is that its premise is skewed, and I think that if they paid closer attention to current events over the last fifty years or so it would be obvious. Unfortunately, our current crop of teachers were raised in the system that skews our children.

For the record, it's going in the opposite direction of that indicated.

In this society we have "children" who live at home well past their 30s.[1] We increasingly raise the drinking age. We encourage the abandonment of responsibility for our actions, replacing it with blame.[2] We have built a nanny state to take care of not just those who are in legitimate need; but adults who are capable of taking care of not only themselves, but each other and their own children. Speaking of which, we usurp their authority as parents and introduce thoughtless standards of State-imposed conformity upon them. And as we stifle dissenting thought and alternative approaches, we recite Newspeak mantras of individuality and creativity.

Development doesn't work the way of this meme... do you wait to get into the water until you can swim? Of course not. It's plainly ridiculous. You get into the water in order to learn. Do you wait until you know how to play a musical instrument before you place your fingers upon it? Of course not. Predictably, it is practice that leads to proficiency, and the lack of the first results in the lack of the second.

Psychologists now claim not only that adulthood begins at age 25, but that it is because they don't exercise the responsibilities of adulthood earlier. Who could have predicted that? Well... anybody, really. It's obvious.

I have mentioned this before in regard to the subject of death. Question: Why do we have pets? Answer: because they die. And those little deaths and losses prepare us for the vastly more traumatic experience of losing our parents and discovering that we are wholly self-reliant individuals. Sadly, there are now individuals raised under the theory of "let them develop naturally", who will never reach adulthood. What the "let them develop naturally" school of thought does not comprehend is that environment shapes a being's development, and that the role of a guiding, motivating parent is part of the natural environment in which we should expect a human being to be raised. It's our job as parents to place upon them responsibilities -- chores, homework, etc. --  so that they may exercise judgment and discipline and problem-solving and become competent to apply these skills more generally.

We have one task as parents, and that's to see that our progeny can carry on without us. And I'm sad to say that this meme isn't going to equip anyone to do that one task.

I don't want to raise competent and compassionate kids... in the end, if that's all I have, then the job is unfinished. There is a reason they call it "raised"... as in raised up from where they begin. Instead I want to raise them to be competent and compassionate adults at the proper moment of life.

[1] overwhelmingly, this is blamed on economic factors. This is less a lie than an inability to comprehend the actual factors. There is a surplus of jobs in America; that's why we have so many immigrants. Americans are erroneously taught by those who sell higher education that higher education will necessarily qualify them for executive positions, ignoring that education does not negate the principle of supply and demand, nor does it negate the superior value of experience. As a result they do nothing at all and fallaciously claim that there are "no jobs". What is at play here is the unwillingness of Americans to accept entry-level employment for themselves.

[2] see footnote [1] for an example where employers and "the economy" are blamed for the individual's refusal to get off his butt and get an entry-level job.

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