Lately the phrase “think of the children!” has come to mind a few times. Of course, this immediately makes me recall a Simpson’s episode in which a woman repeatedly shrieks “Think of the children!” and “Won’t someone please think of the children!” Ah, the Simpsons. Indeed such a cry can be a meaningless play on emotions, as it was intended to portray in the aforementioned episode but recently it seems to me thinking of the children might be an extremely helpful thing to do.
One of the most obvious areas in which we need to “think of the children” is education. Slashing funding for public schools seems to be par for the course in many areas around the country. Legislatures are not content to limit themselves to cutting funding either. Mandates about curriculum,bonds, school boards have all been tossed about without any seeming understanding of what will even work let alone what will benefit children’s education. When it comes to education, thinking of our children should be the focus. It is what our teachers, principles, paras, aides, cooks, custodians and all other staff at our schools are engaged in throughout the school year. It is what will benefit our society, our legal system, and political system. Having educated citizens impacts nearly every aspect of our lives. Whether we have children ourselves or not, we all definitely need to “think of the children.”
We could also stand to “think of the children” when considering political campaigns. In this case, such thoughts might clarify what should be obvious to us anyway. Do we want national leaders who teach hatred? When we teach children how to be good citizens, how to be good neighbors, and so on do we tell them saying hateful, ignorant, and cruel things is okay as long as you are using “straight talk?” Do we teach our children basic decency and kindness is kowtowing to political correctness? It is frightening to think we might have to ban children from watching the President of the United States make a speech for fear children would copy his speech at school and end up in deep trouble.
Let’s reign in our political bickering, divisiveness, and party loyalty. Please, think of the children.