Thursday, December 06, 2007

Our Generation's Wrong Turn

Wyatt just posted a news recap of the Mall Shooting in Omaha. Read it here. This is a tragedy. Worse, it seems to be an escalating occurrence in this country. Why?

My first question concerning this article is how someone walks around in the mall with a rifle. . . . .A RIFLE!!. . . .and nobody notices. Not exactly a concealed weapon. I don’t know the particulars, so maybe it makes sense. Note: If you see someone carrying a rifle or saw-off shot gun in the mall. . . . RUN!

But, I digress. . . . .

This situation got me thinking. Things are much more publicized now so it is easy to say that things have changed. In fact, there have been people committing suicide for a long long time. I recall, as a child, hearing the occasional report of a teen taking their own life. Taking that into account, It still doesn’t explain the increase in this mindset and the methodology with which it is executed.

So at what point do we reign in our children and realize that OUR generation has fucked up. Things like Outlawing Spanking and treating children like they have equal say in an adult environment is too much pressure. Children are taught that they are entitled to everything and have to work at nothing. So imagine the crushing disappointment to a teen when he/she realizes that the world is tougher than that.

Our generation sends countless emails around talking about how fun being a child was and how in today’s society how dangerous that fun was. Hanging down in the woods or “The Creek” (pronounced CRIK) was awesome but imagining my son doing that with his friends is unthinkable. Now we are going to worry that if our kids go to the mall with friends that they may not come home.

My brother and I were talking about a high school teacher that we both had named Father John Joseph. NOTE: This is not a pro FJJ speech. John Joseph taught Sophomore Algebra. Any indiscretion was dealt with one of the following (piano wire, “Mellow Yellow” the wiffleball bat or the “wraparound” – the curved back part of the chair designed to paddle your entire ass). This was the most horrific example of what was wrong with how we grew up. However, we all dealt with it. My brother is 10 years older that me, which means that at least 10 years of FJJ was unleashed on the school. Algebra scores were through the roof. Nowadays, if you give a student a written assignment as punishment, the parents are up your ass with a law suit. There has to be a middle ground.

Coddling our youth is not the answer.

Recently, I have heard several people that I know use the term, “They deserve it!” when referring to why they are doing something for their children. That has officially become my new pet peeve. Your children do not deserve to go to Disney World any more than some poor hungry kid from Camden deserves to go to Disney World. If you can take them, great. Have a good time. But kids do not deserve to go to a good school. If they work hard at school and get accepted into a good school, then they have earned the right to get into a good school. If you have the money or are willing to put yourself in debt to allow your kids to go to a good school, they are very lucky and should appreciate all that you do for them. Kids deserve to be loved by their parents and to be care for and protected from harm. They deserve their parents support and should be fed, sheltered and given whatever opportunity that can be afforded to them. Other than that, you have to earn your way.

This will give our children a stronger feeling of accomplishment and will HOPEFULLY reduce the amount of incidents like the mall shooting.


At 1:56 PM, Blogger Mrs Grim said...

So true. Raising good kids is so hard - I always worry that the decisions I've made in the past or are making now are not good enough. I've searched my kids rooms when I felt it necessary. I'm lucky, my kids have turned out pretty darn good so far. And I'm not saying they are perfect by any stretch - they have each gotten into their own trouble as teenagers, but so far have gotten out of that phase. Crossing my fingers that it continues.

At 3:14 PM, Blogger Wyatt Earp said...

Captain America at First In! had a great point: if we just stopped giving these toads the attention they deserve, maybe the shootings would decline. Stop showing the photo of the shooter. Stop discussing it altogether, save for the important facts and details.

These kids ant attention, and they're ready to kill innocent people to get it. Disgusting.

At 5:33 PM, Anonymous vincent_antonelli said...

You're right about coddling the little ones too much. No doubt about it. The reason why FJJ methods worked didn't have anything to do with FJJ. They worked because if you went home and told your pa that FJJ took a wiffle ball bat to your ass at school, your pa would beat it some more for stepping out of line when you should've been learning.

At 12:47 AM, Blogger RT said...

Very well said. I see it every day. "You were too critical on my son's essay. He wrote two versions and spent many hours on his essay."

That doesn't mean he deserves or has earned an A.

"My child HAS to get an A." Well, not all children can get an A.

I don't have kids, so I really can't speak to parenting techniques, but from what I see, there are way too many parents trying to ease their children through life when life is anything but easy.

I have a student that needs major help. That students refuses, dad is not involved too much, and mom just makes excuses.

Likewise, I had a student experience a steep decline in his/her mental health a few years ago. I was afraid to go to school every day. I seriously thought the student would snap at some point.

We've fallen into a trap of wanting to constantly entertain our children and make them happy 24/7. That's impossible. We've created a heavily narcissistic society.

At 8:34 AM, Anonymous grimjack said...

There seems to be so much wrong today that it is hard to find an answer. I have to agree media coverage is a problem. These kids want glory, and they get it. Maybe the media should focus on the shattered lives of the victim's families instead of the piece of crap that did this.

Then there is the mental illness factor. How do people this fucked up get guns in the first place? It's not the first time.

Arming security guards and teachers? Have you seen some of them? Do you really want security guards, who probably make close to minimum wage, shooting people for shoplifting or having too many items in the express lane? Then getting in a shoot-out with a mall nutjob with a semi-auto rifle? As for teachers, while I had some like the one deathlok described, I also had some whom disarming wouldn't have been much work. You would end up with teachers getting shot with their own weapons.

Then you have video games that simply are for killing people without any point. To be honest, I'm suprised that there isn't a mall or school shoot-up game. While I don't tend to blame video or tv, I can see how it would influence someone who isn't quite right in the head to begin with.

Then you have the parents who want to be their kid's friends and not their parents. Parent's are supposed to say 'no' occasionally, not buy their kid a gun.

At 10:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You forgot to mention the medival flail that all those Franciscans wear around their remember the robe with three knots that they claim are for their three vows of poverty, chastity ,and obediance..but were in my case really for pain, agony, and disfigurement....Never had Father John but did have Fr Carl who was Father John Squared


Post a Comment

<< Home