Today as I was shopping for a movie and video games for my son, I was stopped in my tracks by the movie titles and the video games which promote violence, that have become a source of entertainment for our children. I’m blown away at how dark the titles and content are and I felt myself getting sick to my stomach as I surveyed them. As I sit typing this, I hear in the background a piece on guns and how this particular store cannot keep their high powered rifles in stock. I am shocked at how we have become desensitized to human suffering and sickened at the thought that adults are plying our children with this garbage. It’s incredibly ironic how mindful we are to feed our children organically, strengthening their bodies while we pay to fill their minds with junk, systematically altering who they are and placing them in a position to harm themselves and those around them. When a kid can pump 11 bullets into a six year old it’s not a stretch to guess that video games have done a number on the desensitizing of our kids. I was reminded of my son who last summer purchased his first video game only to bring it home, play it for a couple of levels and then eject it and bring it to me saying that he felt it was something that he shouldn’t be exposed to. It blessed me to know that in all of the “fun” he was having, he noticed the language being used and was turned off enough to give it to me to trash.
And so on my way to my car I once again remembered my childhood. How the worst thing that could happen to a kid was getting “jumped” by the public school kids who were let out a few minutes after us. I recalled how free we were; how we spent our days “in the street” until it began to get dark outside or until we heard mommy call us in for dinner. I remember the neighbors being friendly…I remember knowing our neighbors, respecting our neighbors, playing with neighborhood kids and having sleepovers unafraid of lurking relatives, my parents unconcerned that we would be unsupervised and tempted by the internet. I do recall coming home from a sleepover and telling my mom how I was spooked by my friend’s mom and her friend who got drunk and happy until a fight broke out and my friend’s mom was knocked out when she stumbled and bumped her head on the table. Ummm…that was the last sleepover at that house. My mom was doing what moms do….she was protecting me!
It got me to thinking about the world that we live in now and I thought to myself…
If I ruled the world:
- I would implore husbands and wives to work out their differences instead of exchanging the old for the new, sometimes having a spare on lay-away somewhere! We are showing our children that it is easy to quit and start over. There is no value in marriage. Loyalty is so yesterday.
- I would bring back something that has become old school…Communication! We have replaced family time and face to face interaction with Apple and all things electronic and have allowed those “things” to baby sit and occupy the space in our childrens’ lives which we once occupied. We’ve also fallen into the electronics trance and then wonder why our kids don’t write and speak in full sentences. k? ttyl! LOL!
- I would do away with fast food…nothing that is fast is ever that good! Families would once again meet at the dinner table without their cell phones buzzing.
- I would insist that parents discipline their children. I’d let them know that their permissive attitudes are hurting, not helping their kids; that their kids don’t need a friend in you, they need a boundary setter; a rule instituter; someone who loves them enough to value them, teach them compassion, love, generosity, loyalty; show them how to be resilient; tell them the truth…that things will not always go their way, but they are strong enough to endure whatever challenge; that they are not alone in the fight because we will always be their support and God will never leave nor forsake them. – We don’t discipline our kids because it “hurts their self-esteem.” I recall standing in front of youth during a time of sharing and making the remark that I am teaching my son how to win and how to lose gracefully. I teach him how to lose by letting him taste defeat and react in a healthy fashion. I heard countless objections to my approach…I was accused of “child abuse.” They were kidding, but their hearts spoke on the matter.
If I ruled the world:
- I would insist that kids obey those in positions of authority.
- I would bring back prayer in school.
- I would teach our children to love and respect themselves and each other.
- I would influence my neighbors to tear down their fences and open their gates and get to know those around them. We don’t know our neighbors save the few glimpses we get as we pull our trash cans back in or run into them at the mailbox. We have no idea what goes on behind their doors nor do we care to find out since our own lives are so out of control.
- I would reinstate love and compassion for our fellow man. We run away from those who are struggling or suffering. We don’t want to “get involved” because it’s none of our business or it’s their problem. How sad, when their problem spills out of their homes and into ours!! That long ago asked question needs to be revived and then implemented….”Am I my brother’s keeper?” — Yes, we would be just that. We would notice odd behavior. We would speak up; we would inquire; we would pray; we would check on that neighbor from time to time; we would bring by a meal just because we have extra.
If I ruled the world:
- I would convince the retailers that violent video games, movies and books laced with filth just won’t sell, putting that media out of work.
- I would not make available assault weapons to the public…period!
If I ruled the world, everyone would agree and then begin to change…then heal…then effect a change in their families and neighborhoods…and ultimately the world. If I ruled the world…I would have some great ideas; some healing ideas, but the fact remains that if I ruled the world, there would still be choice because that is how God would want it…and sometimes our choices hurt!