Saturday, August 2, 2014

Common Sense

So today I'm in line at Wal-mart, ahead of two ladies who seemed to be sisters.  All of a sudden one of  them just starts yelling at another lady in the line next to us.  The first lady had a 3 or 4 year old girl sitting in her buggy and the mom had smacked the little girl on the shoulder for something.  The child did not cry but did stop the behavior.  Evidently the other lady next to us tells the mom that she is abusing her child.  She also identifies herself as a child protection worker and told the mom she was going to get her child taken away from her. That is why the mother started yelling at her!   At this point, you know I had to step in!   First I could not believe I was hearing correctly.  I asked the mom behind me to tell me exactly what was going on.  I then told her to ignore the lady in the other line.  That lady continued to mutter at the mother.  So I turned around and told her that spanking a child, is NOT a crime in the state of Florida and as far as I know not a crime in any other state in the USA.  Even liberal NY state just had a case about a father spanking a teenage girl and the case was dropped.  Basically in Florida a parent is allowed to discipline their child.  Physical abuse is considered marks that last an unusual amount of time.  I'm not wording it exactly but that is the gist of it.  I began quoting what I could remember to the other lady who I doubt very seriously works for the state.  She looked like a rough individual.  I wish I had asked for her name and her supervisor's name because I would have called and reported such unprofessional behavior if she even works for the state!  The mom and her sister were so ticked off that I warned them not to attack the lady but hey people get mad when you get involved with their kids!  The little girl sat there playing with a toy. 

I could not believe the nerve of that woman! 

Now I know there are cases of child abuse in the country.  This whole subject has been on my mind lately because of various stories in the news.

This whole summer we have been inundated with stories of parents who have left their children in cars and forgotten them.  Then there has been a couple of stories about kids playing in parks without their parent's supervision like this story   http://www.worldmag.com/2014/07/is_leaving_a_child_to_play_alone_at_a_park_criminal_neglect

There was a story of a mom in Florida who allowed her 7 year old to walk to the park and play alone and she was also charged.

I'm in my late 40's and based on the above stories, my family, Jon's family, every one of our friends' families would have all been locked up in jail!

Now I never got a spanking but I should have and it would have been better than the punishments I got which consisted of me being shamed for everything and empty threats.  Jon on the other hand had his tail whipped many times.  One time on vacation he and his younger brother got 'switched' they had marks on their legs for a few days.  BTW, his daddy was a school principal at the time!   All of my friends got spankings or whippings from their parents and at school too! 

When I was in 2nd grade, I often went home with a friend on the bus.  Her parents owned the local car dealership and worked so we were free to roam the neighborhood.  We even took a small pontoon boat out by ourselves.  CRAZY!  Jon began walking home from school by himself at some point in elementary school and it was quite a long walk.  I can remember being dropped off at a city park to play while my aunt shopped.  In elementary school I started going to another friends house so we could skate....ON THE ROAD!!!!  LOL  We also went to a lake and swam...with alligators all around.  Can you imagine?  The thing is we didn't think anything about it!

We also rode without seat belts and in backs of trucks.  We licked the bowl clean from cake batter.  We played outside all day long....the list goes on and on.

Now would I allow my kids to go to a park alone or do any of the above stuff?  NO!  Steve is lucky he can get out of the house alone at 18 LOL BUT that does not make me think someone else should be criminalized for doing something that would not have even raised eyebrows 40 years ago OR even today in other countries.

Do I let Shad go off with friends like I did?  No but I am not going to fault a parent who does.

There are many times I worry that I make my kids more fearful because of the rules and limitations we place on them.  Obviously we love our kids and want the best for them in every situation.  I'm a worry wart and that is probably not healthy.  In fact I keep most of it to myself so I don't end up in a mental ward somewhere! 

BUT what bothers me the most is that our country is becoming a "nanny country" basically telling people exactly point by point how to raise their kids.  That should alarm everyone!  Children don't have the childhood we did, playing outside because people are so fearful.

The Christmas right after Steve turned 16 years old, I had the boys with me.  Sam and Shad had both fallen asleep in the van and I was running into a Best Buy to buy something.  I left all three of them in the van, with the music playing.  It was cool outside, maybe sweater weather, really comfortable.  It was about 5 pm, still light out.  I parked in the handicapped parking and told Steve he could come in with the boys if they woke up.  All I did was pick up something and was in line when a female police officer came in the store.  She had me paged, well I was right by the front of the store.  I went up to her and she began yelling at me for leaving my kids in the car.  I told her that Steve was 16 years old and old enough for a driver's license.  He could legally drive the kids somewhere so why couldn't he watch them while I went in the store? Plus Steve is not a small guy, it would be unlikely that someone would try anything on them.  I believe the van was locked and I had the keys.    She became very angry with me and I complained to her supervisor who apologized to me! 

Sure we want our kids to be safe but come on......

Is the world a scarier place now than it was 40 years ago?  I really do not think so.  We HEAR about things more than we did back then but everything happened back then as it happens now.  There were sexual offenders, serial killers, kidnappers, child abusers....it all happened back then. 

There is always a balance to be found.  When I look back at some of the things I did....I wonder how in the world am I still here!  None of the things above would I ever ever ever allow my kids to do!  But I don't think the government should step into a family's situation until there is a real cause to do so. 

Where did common sense go to? 

While I'm on the topic of common sense......I'm in a discussion on FB on WHY in the world this country would bring back the doctor/missionary with Ebola!   Yes the person is a wonderful person but I would think that common sense would tell us that we should not potentially expose the USA to Ebola just to treat one person.  The person knew what he was getting into when he signed up to go.  Yes I sympathize with the family but I think this is wrong.  I KNOW hospitals and I know mistakes happen, people get lazy and germs get spread.  I'm sure they will probably contain it but I doubt that we will get through this without seeing others infected there in the hospital.  Most of my friends disagree with me but hey what's new??

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Ok after my rant......something funny....  Steve is feeding our friends animals (barn yard included) while  they are gone.  So yesterday after we finished up at Habitat for Humanity we went by their farm.  As we were leaving we saw about 50 vultures around a herd of cows.  Steve and I looked at each other, then looked at the cows but they were on the other side of the field.  A field that has an electric fence.  I said it looked like there was something coming out of one of them ....HAHAHAHA!  I was so shocked it didn't make sense.  We were afraid one of them had died on our watch.  So we went around to another small farm and went up their drive to get closer to the animals and by that time the "thing" had gotten out and there was a baby calf!

 
the cord was still attached and the mom bit it off.  Little calf was up and walking, how cute.  How surprising, our friends didn't tell us to watch for that LOL!
 
NEVER a dull minute around here:) 
 
Shad went with Steve today to work at HH for a few hours then they are off to a friend's pool/birthday party.  Last night they went to the movies...I think Shad should be really glad he has a teenage brother to take him all over the place!  Steve didn't' get to do things like Shad does!!
 
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On a somber note, please keep the Musser family in your prayers.  I've heard that there is a fund being set up for Tommy's funeral expenses.  If you'd like to contribute you can go to their page
http://theblessingofverity.com/ or their address is 
 Joe and Susanna Musser
350 Smithville Road
New Providence, PA 17560
 
No one is ever prepared for their child's funeral.  That is a way you can help. 
Thank you!
 



3 comments:

  1. As a reader who is a very liberal Canadian, not a Christian, hates guns, and doesn't yet have kids....(Though I've worked with children who have disabilities for 15+yrs, so I've got an idea of what the parent thing is like)

    I agree with what you've posted. The media and our governments have created both a culture of fear and also a culture of invincibility. We are most often a product of our environment, and the information we are given is what we are often lead to be true, with societal behaviour being the byproduct. A couple examples being, the "color coded terrorist alert system" and on the opposite end of the spectrum "The American coming back to the US to be treated for Ebola". I personally have far more fear about the Ebola and global warming situation then being a victim of a terrorist act.

    I'm in my 30's, and as children we did many things that would be considered "unsafe" these days. You know, things like playing at the park and walking to school without adult supervision, playing outside with all the kids on the street until dark, drinking water out of the hose, and waiting in the car for a few mins while a parent ran into the store to get milk. All in small-town suburbia. We, like most of our peers were also occasionally the recipients of a swat on the rear for misbehaving (like the time I un-buckled my seat-belt on the freeway, after repeatedly being told not to) or experiencing what soap tasted like after a name-calling incident. Most of the time our consequences fit the crime, so we learned from them. There was no Mr.Clean magic-eraser, so scrubbing your artwork off the wall wasn't an easy, quick job. I had to eat my sister's bowl of Mac n' Cheese that covered in ketchup, when she just asked for a couple drops. Etc...

    Having said that, there ARE "consequences" that go over the top and are abusive. Also, situations in where "independence" is neglectful. I don't think the dangers out there are worse than they were 30yrs ago, but they are different. Instead of bubble wrapping kids, they need to be taught about how to avoid AND deal with real dangers that they could potentially face. Kids grow up, and need to learn how to navigate and experience the world with confidence and heaven forbid enthusiasm, instead of anxiously living out of fear.

    There is a book called "The Culture of Fear" and I think you may find it to be an interesting read.

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  2. I think that American Doctors are chomping at the bit to treat Ebola with state of the art medical facilities, to see if it makes a difference. Should they be successful, bet more will be coming. They would like study the illness, not in primitive conditions. Did you see that gloves were washed and hung out to reuse? Laundry done by hand?

    When I say American Doctors I think of those that treat this type of disease, the horrible ones we no longer see here. I would be very concerned about families that were there that traveled back home, since exposure could happen twenty or so days prior to the disease showing up.

    One Doctor has returned and placed himself in isolation in his home, wondering was he in isolation on a plane?

    I don't know if my facts are correct, I was surprised it has spread so fast,how are those people being treated when help pulls out?

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  3. It's amazing how prevalent the spanking misinformation is. I did not know it was not illegal until I took a class for mandatory reporters for my teaching career! And that's in liberal California! On the Ebola front, I think it's natural for us to feel fear. However, I'm not at all worried - the patients will be getting treatment in a place and from personnel equipped to handle the world's most infectious diseases - Emory treats scientists exposed to dangerous bacteria and viruses they study at the CDC. I think we forget that the Virus already on US soil in several labs

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