Thankfully, I don’t have a child that has to watch the news
for school, like staying current with politics and news for social studies
classes at the junior high level. My child is only 5, and doesn’t see or hear
any kind of news, and yes, this is my choice. I let him know when there are
elections, but why would any five-year old care about anything beyond a major
national event (like holidays)?
In the end, I am saddened by the thought of having to raise
my child in an environment that is going to include news like we’ve had in the
last week. I do not care about looking at any arguments through the lens of
politics, but I do see the arguments against the basic inhumanity with which we
treat each other very clearly. For starters, this situation in Missouri, at
least to me, is not about race, but more about police training. I remember, as
a kid, having “Officer Friendly” visit my grade school on an annual basis and
teach us about being a good citizen and obeying the law. We all had respect for
this profession, and the police respected the neighborhood and its people.
Where are has that level of respect and professionalism gone?
And again, just a few days after Missouri turns into such a
political fiasco for all involved, we have another egregious human rights
violation go unpunished. For me, again, the issue had less to do with race and
the initial act of trying to establish a sense of order, and more to do with an
angry person not trained properly in how to make situations more peaceful.
If I had to raise a pre-teen or teenager right now, and they
asked me what is going on in the country, I would give two answers. One, the
media exaggerates and most police officers are awesome people there to help us
all coexist in law-abiding ways. Two, any life that is lost for no reason
whatsoever or because one person has an ego-power-trip going on, this is an
immense tragedy. I hope my son can eventually live a life in this way.
It is just and right to live a law-abiding life and do right
for your fellow citizens. Keep yourself above the criminals and never resort to
selfish, cruel behavior to have any gains in life. At the same time, respect
law enforcement officers, because for the most part, most of them are good,
honest workers trying to live a good life for themselves and their families.
To those people as depressed as me about the situation in
our country, don’t give up hope. The greatness of America can still be taught
in our schools as long we remember that it comes from our Constitution and our
ongoing dedication to personal freedom. Don’t be sad that our kids are growing
up in a less safe country, just remember that you have the chance to make your
child emotionally intelligent and empathic…please do it soon!
Labels: Ferguson, news, NYPD, Officer Friendly, police, what do you say to your kids