It’s the culture and the values, stupid

4 Nov

James Carville once said, “it’s the economy, stupid” when describing the key campaign issue in an election. Moi wants to paraphrase, “it’s the culture and the values, stupid.” Felicity A. Morse of Huffington Post UK has posted the following article, Facebook: Children Young As Seven ‘Addicted To Social Networking’ which makes one wonder about the state of families.

Around 50% of seven to 12-year-olds use Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites every day, according to a survey by consumer analysts Mintel.

For one million of these youngsters joining Facebook is viewed as a “rite of passage” and “an absolute must-have” according to the researchers. Only 5% of the youngsters surveyed didn’t use the site.

Peer pressure persuades kids where they go online, as nearly two-thirds of seven to twelve year-olds choose how to communicate depending on what sites their friends visit.
Twitter and Club Penguin rate the most highly after Facebook, though only 9% use Disney’s ‘social community’ every day.

Girls are most likely to fall victim to the pressures associated with social networking sites, with two thirds of those who value their mobile phone as a prized possession being female. Less than half of the boys surveyed gave the same result.

There’s similar trends for Facebook usage, with 10 to 12-year-old girls being the group most likely to use the site every day.
http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2011/11/03/facebook-twitter-addiction_n_1073252.html?ref=education&ir=Education

It is important for families to connect with each by participating in activities like family dinners and gasp, actually talking to each other.

Every week in the Seattle Stranger there is a column I, Anonymous , which gives one reader the chance to rant anonymously about any topic or person that has provoked such a reaction that venting and a good old fashion rant is necessary. Sometimes, the rants are poetic or touching. Most of the time, they are just plain hilarious. This is a recent rant, which is from a teacher, not an educator

I say hello with a big smile every morning as you shuffle in the door, but I secretly seethe with hatred for almost each and every one of you. Your stupidity and willful ignorance know no bounds. I have seen a lot of morons in my 10 years of teaching high school, but you guys take the cake. Your intellectual curiosity is nonexistent, your critical thinking skills are on par with that of a head trauma victim, and for a group of people who have never accomplished anything in their lives, you sure have a magnified sense of entitlement. I often wonder if your parents still wipe your asses for you, because you certainly don’t seem to be able to do anything on your own.
A handful of you are nice, sweet kids. That small group will go on and live a joyful and intellectual life filled with love, adventure, and discovery. The vast majority of you useless fuckwits will waste your life and follow in the footsteps of your equally pathetic parents. Enjoy your future of wage slavery and lower-middle-class banality.
Amazing how teachers are blamed for the state of education in this country. Look what you give us to work with. I am done trying to teach the unteachable.

Moi doesn’t blame most teachers for the state of education in this country, but puts the blame on the culture and the unprepared and disengaged parents that culture has produced. Moi also blames a culture of moral relativism as well which says there really are no preferred options. There are no boundaries, I can do what I feel is right for ME.

Moi is a “bus chick.” My principle mode of transport is the bus. On a recent adventure, I had just finished grocery shopping and had a bunch of bags. I was waiting at the corner for the light to change and the walk sign to come on. A disheveled man slowly staggered across the street and the stench, which enveloped him, preceded him.  The light was green and he was crossing the street. Cars stopped and honked their horns, but he was oblivious. He got across the street to my corner. The walk sign came on and I crossed the street to catch my bus. The bus was there and the driver had all the doors and windows open. It was raining, but the driver said I could board early. He explained that one prior passenger had some “issues.” I told him that I had encountered that passenger. We began a conversation while waiting for the bus to depart.  

I told him I had seen the man crossing the street and I wondered what his story was. All children start life with so much promise, I said. At some point in the conservation, we started talking about families and he said let me tell you about my family and he did. I listened.

He has been living with a woman for several years and there is no thought of ever marrying.  He has four sons, the youngest is 19 years old. The older ones are sort of doing OK. The younger one had lived with him and his girlfriend for a while, but he didn’t take to school and didn’t want to study. His girlfriend didn’t want to be a “hall monitor” and there were personality differences between the girlfriend and the son. So, the son moved out and is living elsewhere, but his life is troubled. The girlfriend was married to a very abusive guy and she left him. She has four children, the oldest is 33 and has been depressed her whole life. She had a bout with meth and is currently taking a buffet of antidepressants. She has two children, a ten year old and a two year old. The ten year old’s father said he never wanted children and this woman had him to keep the father in the relationship. Of course he bolted and is a sporadic interference in the life of this child. The 10 year old has problems and for a time the girlfriend had sole custody because mom was such a druggie.  The two year old is a girl and mom is still breastfeeding her. Since she takes a buffet of antidepressants, the child is getting the drug cocktail through the breast milk.  This little girl is slow and does not have the speech that one would expect of a two year old.

The girlfriend’s other three children are not fairing much better. The 33 year old was kinda conceived to hold the girlfriend’s first marriage together. That obviously didn’t work. The girlfriend’s first husband had an affair and a baby outside that marriage. So, to patch things up, the first husband agreed to let her have the second daughter. She isn’t doing so well, either. The other two children were in his words, “mistakes.” The girlfriend’s youngest child is a 16 year old with extreme anger issues. The driver mentioned he slapped the kid when he tried to hit the girlfriend. They got into an argument about the kid slapping her. According to the driver, the kid routinely calls his mother slut and whore. He says he will let that pass, but if he tries to hit his girlfriend, he will intervene again.

Thankfully, it was time for the bus to leave and some other passengers came aboard. When I got to my stop, I thanked the driver for the ride and sent Blessings to his family.
Moi knows that many want to define a family in many different ways, but a true family offers children a sense of continuity, stability, and security. Many modern couplings are transitory and the number of partners cycling through children’s lives in these serial relationships can sometimes be staggering. Many who rail against the children in the education system and their perceived deficiencies ought to ask themselves if you promoted the cultural and societal values which produced them.

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

7 Responses to “It’s the culture and the values, stupid”

  1. drdoreen October 15, 2012 at 6:53 am #

    An engaging post, drwilda! There’s nothing like specificity. Tragically, the bus driver’s toxic family seems rather unremarkable. Most of us need look no further than our own friends and families for similar examples: grandma’s/grandpa’s/mom’s/dad’s/son’s/daughter’s live-in boyfriends/girlfriends; out-of-wedlock (such an old-fashioned term!) pregnancies; same-sex couples; divorced and re-coupled couples; drug addiction; sex addiction; the sexualization of children; the death of childhood innocence. It’s possible to get used to almost anything.That’s the new normal and the back story of nearly every child in school these days. I doubt that the teacher-on-a-rant appreciates the rich ironies of being published in The Stranger, a rag that wants its readers to get used to just about anything. And yes, he’s bought into the new normal; his students are “fuckwits,” and he, Anonymous Coward, can say that in The Stranger with no repercussions. Teachers like him are part of the problem. What’s the answer, Dr. WIlda? I’m at a loss.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Motivation is increasingly researched as a key ingredient in student achievement « drwilda - October 2, 2012

    […] Moi doesn’t blame most teachers for the state of education in this country, but puts the blame on the culture and the unprepared and disengaged parents that culture has produced. Moi also blames a culture of moral relativism as well which says there really are no preferred options. There are no boundaries, I can do what I feel is right for ME. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/04/its-the-culture-and-the-values-stupid/ […]

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    […] really are no preferred options. There are no boundaries, I can do what I feel is right for ME. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/04/its-the-culture-and-the-values-stupid/ […]

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    […] Too many families lack a moral compass or a compass of any type. In fact, too many children are growing up in shells of what a family should be. Moi wrote about the culture in It’s the culture and the values, stupid. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/04/its-the-culture-and-the-values-stupid/ […]

  4. The military mirrors society « Comments From An Old Fart - November 13, 2012

    […] Too many families lack a moral compass or a compass of any type. In fact, too many children are growing up in shells of what a family should be. Moi wrote about the culture in It’s the culture and the values, stupid. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/04/its-the-culture-and-the-values-stupid/ […]

  5. Promoting positive peer pressure: The Posse Foundation | drwilda - June 7, 2014

    […] Moi doesn’t blame most teachers for the state of education in this country, but puts the blame on the culture and the unprepared and disengaged parents that culture has produced. Moi also blames a culture of moral relativism as well which says there really are no preferred options. There are no boundaries, I can do what I feel is right for ME. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/04/its-the-culture-and-the-values-stupid/ […]

  6. University of Chicago study: Parents’ views on justice affect babies’ moral development | drwilda - September 2, 2015

    […] what a family should be. Moi wrote about the culture in It’s the culture and the values, stupid. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/04/its-the-culture-and-the-values-stupid/ The next unnamed scandal will be formulated like a hurricane forms over the ocean. After all, […]

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