Politics and Children?

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Hey guys…

Most of you know I’m pretty apolitical. If it smells of politics, I’m typically walking the other way. But recently, a few things have ticked me off.

If you don’t want to read further about my minor political and education rant, you might as well stop now… [Hopping on my soap box…]

I’m pretty liberal. And not religious at all. If anything I’m probably an agnostic with atheist leanings. But I believe firmly in the power of humankind to do amazing things for both good, selfish, and evil reasons. My hope is that we as a whole balance out so we’re not tilting to the wrong side, whatever that may be.

So that’s me. You’re entitled to your opinions and beliefs so long as I am also afforded that consideration. 🙂

Today I saw that there’s a new political humor book for kids called Democrats are Dumb, A Children’s Guide. The press release states that the book “harmlessly and humorously works on detonating the left-wing landmines the Democratic Party has left lying around in its attempt to indoctrinate us and our children in ‘Socialist Think.'”

Before I get going, let me say that I’m all for political humor. We need it. Politics is absurd under the best of circumstances and we need to keep some perspective.

But… and you felt there was a “but” there, didn’t you… Kids need to form their own opinions based on the history they learn in school and based on observations of the world around them. If they become conservative, liberal, or independent-minded, more power to them. But we shouldn’t urge them to do more than think for themselves.

This kind of Dr. Seuss rhyming sing-song for kids who don’t yet have political opinions of their own is like giving them a loaded gun… One quoted rhyme says…

“Khrushchev said, ‘.without firing a shot.’
To elect more Democrats was a Communist plot.”

I think we could just as easily write a book making fun of the Conservative right wing that is pushing us towards religious intolerance and scientific ignorance depending on who you listen to.

Let’s let our kids be kids. Keep politics out of the equation until they have the facts about history, government by the people for the people as laid out in the U.S. Constitution, and can form opinions of their own in coherent sentences.

I fear that planting sing-song political land mines in their minds too early will backfire like so many other indoctrination techniques wanted by those wanting to influence our youth. Let them think for themselves.

Please avoid “political primers” for kids like Democrats are Dumb.

I’ll get off my soap box now…

–Fitz

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3 thoughts on “Politics and Children?”

  1. Hey Brian…. I couldn’t agree more!!!

    I would apply exactly the same ideas when it comes to religion… don’t fill a child’s head with crap!! When it comes to morals, principals etc, some parent (of the religious kind) think they have the right (well… they do actually… but the law was made by these people, so…) to teach kids “what to think” and believe, as opposed to “how to think”. If they end up being a fundamentalist faith head… then that’s cool… but at least let them do that after they’ve made that decision themselves.

  2. @Tom Fennelly – Thanks for the comment! And I totally agree… let them think for themselves. 🙂

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