Sunday, 19 October 2008

Stop Mollycoddling Our Children!

So says one British Early Childhood expert, Tim Gill, who's in the country at the moment, and he's becoming increasingly worried about the state of NZ children. He says:

"If we're constantly telling kids you can't do that, it's too dangerous or you can't talk to strangers or everybody out there is trying to get you, well then it's no surprise that kids are increasingly growing up anxious and afraid", he said.

And he's right. Like their counterparts in Britain, Kiwi kids are growing up being told what they can and can not do, which is damages their self-esteem and causes them to be reckless, and not think about what they're doing. This can be seen in the rising rates of youth crime and teenage suicide around the country, and indeed, around the world.

Back before political correctness got a stranglehold on public opinion, most children were left free at a young age to discover the world. They knew the risks involved, and developed out of their own experiences, not at the discretion of their parents.

Similarly, we did not have the problems facing young people back then as we have today. Many proponents of the welfare state would put this down to increased government welfare spending then (although that's hardly the case; in 1960, government spending as a percentage of GDP was at 27.7%, and 50% in 1990. It would be even more now.*) After all, welfare isn't a great concern if you spend almost the entire day playing games in the back yard!
Also, welfare wasn't something you were "entitled" to. If you could work, you worked, and it was as simple as that.

Instead, as Tim Gill says, it is the mollycoddling of today's society which is preventing them from enjoying life to the full, and political correctness, with its talk of "rights" and "entitlements" is behind that mollycoddling.

*Free Radical #73, page 3.

1 comment:

Elijah Lineberry said...

Jolly splendid post, Callum!

Agree with all you would be amazed at how widely this is being quoted!

Well done!