Off Topic: Kids and Discrimination

I swear I’ll start talking about writing again soon.

I was surfing the interwebs yesterday, and I ran across this post on the Feministe blog about why it’s not alright to hate kids. It led me to this post on the BitchPh.D. blog on the same topic. Both were well reasoned arguments for acceptance of children in public spaces, the necessity of not discriminating against kids, why saying “I hate kids” is discriminatory, and why all this isn’t a free pass for parents to let their kids be annoying in public all the time. After reading them both through, I had a thought. This thought was the sort of thought that always makes me wonder “Why hasn’t anyone thought of this before? It’s so blindingly obvious/simple!”

The thought went something like this: If we somehow managed to eliminate all discrimination and unfairness against children (all children everywhere) would they grow into a generation of enlightened, reasoned individuals, thus eliminating all discrimination everywhere? My logic is simple. Everyone is a child at some point (duh.) and how you are treated while in that formative developmental stage known as child-hood drastically skews the sort of person you turn out to be. I’m not just talking about being beaten versus no discipline at all either. I mean, if the adults in your life constantly treat you as an idiot who can’t possibly do anything for themselves, chances are you’ll grow into a fairly incompetent adult. Spending your child-hood being ignored and/or condescended too may turn you into either a condescending jerk in adulthood, or perhaps an insecure introvert. I’m not a psychologist, and of course there are exceptions, but logic and experiment have proven this and other hypotheses about the effects of early influences in adult lives.

It seems like a no brainer, if we all treat the children in our midst with courtesy, respect, decency and care, they’ll grow into caring, courteous individuals and it stands to reason that many of the world’s ills such as hatred, intolerance, prejudice and bigotry will become a thing of the past.

I’m not quite so naive as to really believe that utopia could be so simple, but it’s a nice theory anyway. Maybe someday I’ll write a book about it or something. It would almost need to be science fiction, or possibly fantasy. I’m not (yet) a mother, but when I do finally achieve that state, I think I’ll make it a point to test my theory on my own kids, and ensure that they’re treated as respectfully and caringly as I can possibly arrange. After all, experimenting on our own children shows the courage of our convictions, right?

But, enough theorizing. Come back Tuesday, and I promise there’ll be a writing related post. I’ll be participating in the “Let’s Talk Blog Fest” on that day, and posting a conversation from the currently unfinished Through Brass Goggles. If you want to sign up yourself, just click the button in the sidebar! Or just click the button anyway and see who else is participating.

Thought for the Week: “Adults are only kids grown up, anyway.” Walt Disney

Currently Reading: Cordelia’s Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold


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