I couldn’t disagree with that more. I titled my last post “Those who can’t” as a segue to this discussion which is long overdue. (I planned ahead. Weird right?) I’ve been thinking about what I most want to change in our society. For awhile I thought it was violence. I’d like to live in a society with less violence. But more than that, I wish I lived in a society that loved its children.
I’m not talking about individual parents. I’m talking about society. Of course most parents love their kids, even if they’re bad at it. Society doesn’t. I consider us a society that has folded towards the middle. We marginalize the young and the old in favor of the 24 – 55 year-olds because that is the age group that works. The old are protected, to a degree, by their ability to vote. The young don’t have that.
Think about how our legislatures discuss children. During election season it is all “family values” and “strength of the American family” then comes law making time. At best, legislatures think of educational expenses as “investments.” The terminology used to discuss children is primarily financial. It’s business terminology, cloaked in platitudes, and presented as flattering. I, personally, would much rather be a person than an investment. Can you imagine being valued as less than a stock portfolio? And yet we allow this talk.
Think about the recession. The first things to take hits, before banks and automotive manufacturers who received money for failing, are services provided to the young (education, tutoring, after-school, and lunch programs) and to the elderly (medical, home-checkups, meals, etc.) Lunch programs for children are especially poor in the United States — a country that made pizza sauce a serving a vegetables so they wouldn’t have to spend more money on fresh vegetables. In other countries, kids can expect to eat pretty much the same meals that their parents eat. In America, kids can expect to eat pretty much the same meals that are being provided to the local prisons.
Prisons, by the way, are also in bad shape in the United States.
There it is. All I wish for is a society that cares for its children.