stackobooks.jpgThis is written in response to What’s the World Coming to written by Elfninosmom. In Waycross, GA a group of third graders at Center Elementary school, hatched a plot to harm their teacher. One student even brought a steak knife to school. This began as comment about the post but quickly grew into a rant.

There is and has been for several years a growing problem of children who do not develop a conscience. Some believe it is because they are drug babies, have ADHD, OCD or some other defect. Others attribute the problem to video games, TV, and toy weapons.

Yes, it is possible that violent video games or TV programs may have contributed to the problem. However, third graders should not being playing those games or watching violent TV shows. It is the parents responsibility to provide guidance and supervision. I do not believe that cartoons or toys like guns cause children to become violent. As a child I had toy guns and watched cartoons. I also had parents that taught me cartoons were not real. My parents and granddad taught me the difference between toy guns and real guns. In fact my granddad insisted that no gun was to ever be pointed at people even a toy gun. Guns were for hunting and protection. In my opinion parents are more to blame than TV or toys.

Of course, some may blame the teacher and think what has she done to create such animosity between herself and the students. The teacher did nothing wrong. She simply enforced school rules. There are some children today who control their home environment and do not want anyone placing restrictions on them. It may have been as simple as the teacher expecting the students to follow rules and actually learn. Many children do not encounter rules until they enter school. Their parents often are unable, unwilling or just do not care to control their child’s behavior. Recently, I had a parent of a young child come in the store where I work. The parent was paying for something but the little girl brought something to the counter and demanded to have it. The mom explained to the girl she had been shopping all day and did not need anything else. The little girl proceeded to whine and demand. As the mom was paying she for the book she said just didn’t understand why this always happened. They were with someone else who was still shopping and did not leave the store. As I was helping another customer I heard the sound of a CD being opened. The little girl was trying to open a CD. Fortunately, I stopped her before she did anything more than rip off the price sticker. The mother begins yelling at me from the back of the store that the little girl just wanted a sticker. I sent the girl to her mother. The mom proceeds to yell at the girl and tell her she had to apologize until the child begins crying. Suddenly, the child no longer has to apologize because she is apparently sorry. Also the mom begins to cuss loudly near where I’m helping another customer about how terrible I am because the child just wanted a sticker. Yes, it was just a sticker today the child was trying to steal. Taking something without asking is stealing. If the child had asked I would have given her a sticker. What will the child steal next time? This child was between 4-7 and had already learned how to control mom.

I think it is more likely that children reflect what is happening in society and around them. In part this due to our post-modern culture where there are no moral absolutes. Teachers and parents have been told not to tell children something is wrong because it might make them feel bad about themselves. Well, there are some things that are just plain wrong. That bad feeling is either guilt, remorse, shame or conscience.

In Proverbs parents are instructed to train up a child in the way he should go. No rules may work for steak but it does not work for children. Teachers must be allowed to make and enforce rules for the classroom and administrators and parents must be supportive of teachers.

8 thoughts on “Response to What’s the World Coming To …

  1. I agree. It seems like more and more children are being raised with a sense of entitlement. Their parents don’t teach them what acceptable behavior is by taking the easy road and giving in to them and making anyone else the “problem” and that they are not to blame for anything.

    I think it comes from a parental sense to protect and make their children happy…but not realizing that not making them take responsibility for their actions as all times, it does a disservice to those same children AND society. Even if they don’t grow up to be violent, they will grow up to be insecure, unproductive adults.

    We just had an “altercation” with my son the other day at Walmart. We told him if he was good in the store we could get him something there (we don’t always buy him anything)…he was good for a while so we picked out some bubbles for him to take home. Not long after he began to throw the biggest tantrum in the world! OMG We tried the ole “stop or we take the bubbles away” thing for a few minutes, he proceeded the punch and kick and scream…so I took them away and we promptly left the store (DH stayed to pay for our purchases except for the bubbles). You would have thought I was murdering the child and he continued for almost an hour.

    Yes, I felt bad as I didn’t want to see him upset and unhappy…but we also knew that giving in to him was not acceptable. It would just teach him he could get what he wanted. He had been testing limits for a week or more and that was just the last straw…he did see how “mean” mommy and daddy can get and so far *knock on wood* he has calmed down quite a bit and has been behaving very well when we are out.

    AS far as your story with the sticker…wth was that woman thinking? That kid was thinking if she opened it then mom would have to give it to her…she didn’t care about the stupid sticker…she was being a brat. The girl was not sorry just because she was crying, she was mad and maybe a little embarrassed. Letting her think that you were in the wrong was doing that girl a HUGE disservice as it didn’t teach her anything.


  2. I agree, that little girl in the book store was just being a brat. Shame on her mother for encouraging that kind of behavior! It will come back to bite her, though, when that kid is in her teens. Unfortunately, it will bite the child as well.

    I also agree that some parents just don’t realize the importance of making their children behave, and many don’t teach their children personal responsibility or accountability for their actions.

    My thought on the kids who planned to knock their teacher unconscious, tie her up, and stab her – geez, that sounds bizarre when you say it that way, referring to children – is that they had to have gotten the idea for that kind of crime somewhere. Kids that young don’t come up with ideas like that on their own.

    Yes, the parents have a responsibility to make sure their kids don’t watch inappropriate programming, or play inappropriate video games. At the same time, I’m wondering what these children have been watching, or what they’ve overheard, to give them the idea for the crime in the first place. Whatever it is, it’s extremely inappropriate for children, and the parents should be held accountable.

    That’s why I’d like to know which children came up with the plan, as opposed to which were just going along. The parents of the kids who came up with it should be given a long hard look by the authorities, because they’re doing or allowing something which has warped their kids’ minds.


  3. I once had a client who would bring her kids to the office. I didn’t mind too awfully much if clients brought their kids, but of course the kids couldn’t actually be in the office given what was being discussed.

    As a result, my secretary ended up having to play babysitter, and she didn’t really mind because she liked children. One time this woman’s youngest kid walked up to my secretary and bit her, hit her, kicked her, you name it, all because she refused to give the child her good pen to draw with; bear in mind, I kept paper and crayons around, just in case there were kids in the office, to keep them occupied. This kid had crayons and a coloring book, but that wasn’t good enough, and she had demanded the ink pen instead. This kid drew blood, unbelievably enough.

    Well, the mother and I heard the disturbance and ran out into the reception area. The client blew up and actually accused my secretary of doing something inappropriate, when she was just sitting at her desk trying to work. This mother actually threatened to sue! I told her to go for it, but she never did. Her child wasn’t hurt in any way (though she needed a good spanking for doing that), but if she sued me, I’d countersue to recover the medical bills I paid for my secretary, as I insisted she get the bite looked at by a doctor.

    That’s when I made the rule that no children were allowed in my office at all. I had a responsibility to protect my secretary from that kind of ridiculous accusation, after all, not to mention protecting her from being bitten by a child acting like a wild animal.

    Because of that one client, all of my clients had to pay babysitters, and some could ill afford it. It made me feel a little bad for them, but at the same time, I felt worse for my poor secretary, who was the sweetest girl imaginable and a very good employee. My responsibility was to her, not to others’ children since it was not a proper environment for children anyway.


  4. Actually, if the class was a special ed class it isn’t unheard of for students with emotional problems to exhibit such behavior. As for the authorities doing anything about the parents, probably won’t happen unless there is proof the parents are physically abusive.


  5. I wondered that too Elf…what is happening in the home (or NOT happening) that some of these kids would want to do that. I mean, it could actually be something as innocuous as watching the News, which we all know is full of nothing but violence anyway, or someone making a joke at the kitchen table that they would stab someone if they did that…

    But still…especially if these kids already had disabilities that impaired their normal reasoning, I would think you would need to be extra careful with what you exposed them to and what you taught them…

    Dee…I think you are right. They aren’t going to do anything to the parents unless they find neglect or abuse. I have a hard time blaming parents for 100% of everything anyway…some parents just don’t know better and some kids are just born evil.


  6. I have met a lot of kids with bad behavior but only 2 I would label as evil or bad kids. Yes, kids are human but they really aren’t bad unless something happens in their environment. Children learn what they live.


  7. Some children misbehave because their parents have always allowed the child to have his/her way. The child has not learned consequences for his/her actions.

    I do remember a student for whom I had the responsibility of providing an appropriate education for about 6 years. We continuously had to make more and more modifications for him.

    To keep him happy, his parents allowed his girl friend to reside in their home.

    While schools can attempt to meet the educational needs of their students, and at the same time keep parents happy, circumstances changed drastically when the student was arrested. The sheriff did not make any concessions for this student.

    Children MUST learn to OBEY, parents, teachers, and others in authority. The sooner this is learned, the better it is for both the student and his family.


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