I'm not posting anything on Facebook about the shooting in Florida because I can't have another discussion on gun control. I'll comment but I'm not posting memes, opinions, nada. I will vote and testify on behalf of legislation. But social media...
It doesn't seem to make much difference to those folks who are dug in that ANY gun legislation is the equivalent of Big Brother taking their guns.
But what I will happily defend, with every ounce of my soul are "kids today."
Leave. Them. Alone.
You know who is raising the kids today? My generation. And you know who raised us? The senior citizens.
So if you're complaining about parents and kids- look in the mirror.
First and foremost-- and I'm going to go to internet universal anger font- CAPS-
THE PAST WAS NOT AS GREAT AS YOU REMEMBER IT.
It was not great. Racism was awful. We just watched "Wonder" this weekend- fantastic movie. The oldest daughter in the film has a boyfriend. She was white and he was black. It wasn't even a topic or mentioned and my children didn't think a thing about it. That's awesome.
When "Jungle Fever" came out, everyone about crapped their pants. The "Jefferson's" upstairs neighbors who were a mixed race couple were the butt of jokes. They couldn't even find a biracial actress to play the daughter.
My kids' classes are diverse. There are kids of every race, every mix-- and they talk about it. It's not the white blind comment of "I don't notice color"- it's the complete embracing of the fact that their friends are different. They think it's neat that they celebrate different holidays or celebrate holidays differently.
And sexism. While things aren't great, women are running for office in record numbers. It's discussed and talked about. Women have choices- to have a family, to not have a family, to stay at home with their children or to work.
And on the flip side of that, I have friends who are stay at home dads. My dad and I were close and I remember that being unusual when he went on field trips as a "Room Mom." Now, my husband is extremely involved in our children's lives. Far more than his father was in his life. He changed diapers. If the kids are sick we both decide who has the busier day and needs to go in. He's taken them to the orthodontist, the doctor, picks them up from school. And he's not the only dad doing this.
Which brings me to my next issue...
PARENTS WERE NOT BETTER BEFORE
They weren't. At all.
And if you're old and crabby, all I can say is look at your kids. Are they all that great? Are they self supporting? And they happily married? Are they good parents? Because if they aren't, newsflash... maybe it was you.
Crappy parents have been around for years and years and years.
Parents today are held to ridiculous standards. We are required to monitor our child 24/7 in a truly crazy world of electronics and the internet.
My parents pretty much said "Be home when the street lights start coming on."
Kids drank. They partied. They did drugs.
No one thought to blame their parents for it, though.
Helicopter parents? That was a thing back in the 70s and 80s. I remember kids bringing in their science fair projects and I would think "They are morons... they didn't do that.." or 4-H projects.. give me a break. And the kids like me who did do their own projects would sit there and think how much it sucked.
Or the kids who made teams because their parents interfered....
Nothing has changed.
Except the one thing I will give you.... see the next section...
TEACHERS WEREN'T BETTER
Teachers had more authority. They weren't being told what to teach in a minute by minute "script."
Schools weren't worried about getting sued.
Schools were funded and they had smaller classrooms so teachers got to know the students.
We had recess so the ADHD kids could get that energy out. It also gave us time for socializing which clearly based on Facebook conversations is a lost art.
And if I think pressure is worse on parents these days-- the pressure on teachers is tenfold. They are responsible for not only teaching the materials, but ensuring a stress free work environment
AND NOW PEOPLE WANT THEM TO TAKE A BULLET AND SHOOT INTRUDERS.
What. The. Living. Heck.
No. Just no.
I don't want loaded weapons in my kids' classrooms. You don't think a kid might grab that from a teacher?!?! You don't think a teacher might snap and shoot a kid?!?!
I wouldn't want a SWAT officer teaching Calculus and I don't want the Calculus teacher trying to be a sharpshooter.
So teachers- let's leave them alone.
Oh and yes, I'm married to one.
And yes, I'm a parent to 2 really awesome kids.
They are kids who say please and thank you. They are kids who complete their own projects. They are good students and good friends.
And I am a very average parent. My kids are great because I have a great mother in law. They are great because they see my husband and I work together as a team. They are great because they've had great teachers. They are great because they have access to things I didn't through the internet. They are great because they were born great and I've simply tried really hard not to screw it up.
KIDS TODAY ARE AWESOME
I see them every day. I see my children's friends. They are smart and kind and open minded and passionate. I see my husband's students- some who come from absolute poverty- and how hard they work in a world that is fighting them every step of the way.
Kids graduate from high school and minimum wage hasn't increased since 2009- almost a decade. It costs $100,000 to attend a 4 year public university- what kid can pay for that? There are no summer jobs that can pay for that. Your summer job mowing lawns might have covered tuition 30 years ago, but aside from internet bitcoin hacker, they don't have a chance of being able to pay their own tuition.
They graduate buried in debt- with jobs paying ridiculously low wages- then they get trashed for having to live at home.
GIVE THEM A BREAK.
The kids I saw on TV the past week prove my point. They are strong. They are brave. They are informed.
They are the future and it makes me happy.
If you think everything sucks now and kids suck and parents suck my final thoughts for you are:
GET OFF MY LAWN.