Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The language of hate

Babies are not born hating people.

Kids do not naturally discriminate

We teach them.

In some cases the teaching is obvious and overt

Let's face it no one is going to be surprised if this guys kid is a racist homophobic. Most of us however a bit more evolved than him and teach our children tolerance and acceptance.

Or do we?

Have you or people you invite into your home ever used the phrase "nigger rigged"? Described something stupid as being "gay" or "retarded"? Ever said someone "Gyped" you?

Chances are your kids have heard you, or someone you allow to be around them, use these phrases or others like them?

When I put out the call to find out what the worst thing people ever said within earshot of a child was 90% of the answers were sex based. A few were violence based and those were usually hyperbole of some sort.

So for example one guy confessed to saying as a teen ""I'd give five bucks to see the bitch die." when discussing a much hated teacher within earshot of kids.

and another confessed to saying he wanted to "high five buddy, in the face, with a bat"

The vast majority were sex related though. Being overheard talking about getting or giving oral sex, talking about who they want to have sex with, or how they like having sex.

I don't see this as a bad thing. Yeah it may be a little TMI for a 7 year old but at least they are sending the message that normal peoepl like sex.

The fact that this is what 90% of the surveyed  population had, for a go to answer, a discussion about a normal human activity. Isn't that something we want our kids to be comfortable discussing.

If THAT is the worst thing my kids ever heard adults around them say then it woudl be great but it is not.

I am lucky to raise kids in an age and area where they are not likely to hear anyone throwing around the words like nigger and spick in a department store. they will however  hear people refer to clothes as "gay" or "retarded". Every time they hear this they are being told that there is something wrong with being gay or handicap. Every time we use those words  we are telling everyone around us that those types of people are "less than"

Yeah sure that may not be what we mean but it is what we are saying. It is the message we are giving to the next generation.

I am also sick of hearing people refer to being "raped" in a video game or argument  Rape is not a synonym for loosing. Don't belittle a victims pain by comparing their trauma to getting shot in call of duty or loosing an internet argument. When we do this we are telling young girls that being raped is no big deal. Is that the message we want to send our daughters? or even worse do we want to minimalize the act of raping women for our sons?

Why are the majority of our swear words about sex or body parts. Why does saying fuck illicit a stronger reaction than belittling an entire cultural  group by saying someone Gyp'ed you?

We teach our kids to hate. We preach tolerance and speak hate. We live in a society where violence is glorified and sex is shamed.

Titanic is deemed inappropriate for kids because of the sex and nudity. Apparently the domestic violence and murder of the lower class is ok but heaven forbid a kid see a titty.

Prostitutes are villanized in our culture while drug dealers and thugs are glamorized. Somehow it is worse to sell sex than crack

We are teaching our children to hate. Never to do so overtly but to hate none the less. We are teaching them to view marginalized groups as slightly less than. Perhaps still deserving of equal rights but not as good as us none the less. Worse in many cases we are teaching them to hate themselves.

We are teaching them that being a "closet case" is a bad thing every time we use those words with disdain.

We are teaching them that to have sexual desires is to be bad every time we hastily change the channel at the sight of a nipple

We are teaching them that women are made to be victims every time we throw around words lightly that should be powerful

Hate is king and love is shameful

Thursday, June 21, 2012

I turned out fine

Did you? Well good for you but I have slightly higher hopes for my kids than "not a deranged serial killer/rapist".

Fine is the minimum I want for my kids. OK is still having a pulse when they achieve adult hood. That is not my GOAL as a parent.

"I was spanked as a kid and I turned out fine" 

Well good for you. You know who else was spanked as a kid? Hitler.

Now I am not saying the spanking is what made him psychotic but it also isn't what make you "fine"

I mean lets stop and think about what spanking teaches a kid. It teaches them that people who are bigger than them are allowed to assault them (and by legal definitions it is assault). It teaches kids that people who have authority are allowed to touch your bum without permission. And it teaches them not to get caught being bad because if you get caught someone will hurt you.

"I was made to eat what my parents put in front of me and I turned out fine" 

Again so this is the reason you are "fine"?

What percentage of our population has food and weight issues? Just checking.

We use the "I turned out fine" to justify treating our kids as second class citizens. They are human beings as well. They have feelings that are just as valid as an adults. Would it be ok for your boss to hit you when you screw up because he already told you 5 times and if you keep doing it you may hurt yourself or break something or do you as a human being demand to be treated with a bit more respect than that?

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Call me slacker mom

I have never claimed to be super mom. My kids don't eat an organic diet, they watch TV and play video games, they have dirty faces and I wouldn't change it for anything in the world.

It never occurred to me that I would be judged on my toddlers table manners. That having spaghetti in your eyebrows at two was socially unacceptable.

The mommy wars have went too far and they are sucking the fun out of childhood. Kids should be allowed to be loud and messy in appropriate places. A kid covered in dirt at a park is not a big deal. A kid squealing with happiness going down a water slide is perfectly acceptable.

I am tired of seeing mothers try and stop their kids from being kids because someone else may judge them.

Judge away I say. Let your inner asshattery show.

Tell me to my face I am a bad mother for having a mud covered toddler and dog, go on, I dare ya.

Being a kid is about pretending you are a dog without people judging you 

it is about eating cake like cookie monster and admitting forks are the enemy

It is about feeling the pumpkin guts squish between your fingers.
Why do you care if you got every last speck of dirt off their hand before running to the corner store? Before a wedding yes, before getting butter ... not so much. Why do you care if they make barking noises at pedestrians you pass. Sure it is inappropriate for a fancy restaurant but just out for a walk? What are you afraid of? That someone is going to give you a dirty look? silently judge you? Talk about you later?

Screw em. You only get one chance at a childhood, make sure it rocks for your kids. If something happened and you lost your kid tomorrow you wouldn't say things like
"I wish his face had been cleaner"
"I wish my dishes had always been done"
no it woudl be "I wish I played with them more" or "I wish I hadn't told them no quite so much"

I may loose the mommy wars and I am ok with that as long as I give my kids an awesome childhood.