I just read this article from USA TODAY:
Debate over video-game violence link resurfaces
To say that it pisses me off is an understatement.
The article says that violent video games, movies, etc., desensitize our kids. Really? I was born in 1973 and all the while growing up I watched violent movies, and played violent video games. All of my friends did the same, and I have never read about any of them in the news.
So when are we as a society going to stop blaming everyone/thing out there instead of addressing the real issue at hand. That issue in my opinion is parenting.
See, I grew up in an era where a good ‘ol fashioned ass whoopin’ was common. You do something your not supposed you, you got a hand or belt across the butt. Hell, sometimes my mom would even pull my hair (that’s when I knew she was really pissed). Did I hate them in my mind after the incident? Absolutely, but did I ever think of harming them? Hell no! And ya know what? I deserved every whoopin’ I got.
As many of you know, I was born and raised in the South. South Dakota, that is. Being from that area, a big past time, especially in the fall, is hunting. When I was old enough I took a hunter’s safety course and got my hunting license. I was properly trained on how to handle a firearm and realized just how dangerous they were. My buddies and I would go hunting quite frequently when we were in High School. My dad also had three guns in the house. A 38 special, a 44 Magnum and a 22 Rifle. I was under strict orders NEVER to mess with them. Did he have them in a safe? NO. Did he have trigger locks on them? NO. Did I ever mess with them? NO. Why? Because I knew what the consequences were and while I loved testing my dad, I preferred staying on his good side.
You know what, I lied. I did mess with the 22 once. Let me pause for a short story:
I had come home from school I believe it was. I can’t remember how old I was, but I was old enough to know better. Anyway, I opened the garage door and while I was doing whatever it was I was doing, a blackbird had flown in. I tried to get it out, but it just wouldn’t leave. Well, it was getting close to the time that my parents would be getting home from work and I still needed to get the dished done before they got home (that was a law in our house. Nothing would ruin mom’s day more than to come home and the dishes not be done). So this damn bird wouldn’t leave, and then it hits me. THE 22!!!!! So in my mind I will just run up to their bedroom, open the closet, move all the clothes, take the rifle out of the case, load it, take care of the bird, put everything back, and no one will know. PERFECT! Ahhhh, but I’m a dumbass. Most people would have probably thought about what happens to the bullet if you are shooting indoors. I didn’t have that kinda time though. I wanted that damn bird out of the garage. It took me three shots I believe to get the damn thing, but I got his ass. Victory for me in my mind. I quickly toss the bird in the trash, put everything away, and get the dishes done. About 15 min later I hear the garage door open. Dad is home. He normally goes and gets the paper, then grabs a beer, but not today. He opens the door and yells for me. He wants to know why there are three beams of light coming through the garage ceiling…… SONOFABITCH! I learned a valuable lesson that day though….I learned how to single handedly repair holes in a roof while someone is yelling at you.
At some point we as a society started frowning on disciplining kids. No longer could the school principle paddle you. No longer was it ok for you to beat your kid’s ass in a store for whining or throwing a fit. Oh no, that’s child abuse. Bullshit! Smacking your child to keep them in line and child abuse are two totally different things. So now we have “time out”. Really? Yeah, because that’s scary. Oh, and my personal favorite: “I am going to count to 3 and….” There was no counting in my childhood. You got a warning, if you were lucky, then you got the punishment. Why? Because we knew right from wrong and that’s the way it was. And if you didn’t know it was wrong when you did it, well, ass whoopin’ taken and lesson learned.
Now these “violent” video games and movies have restrictions on them. The games are rated “Mature 17yrs old and over”. So why then, when I used to play it, are their kids in grade school playing it. Oh, because mommy and daddy bought it for me. Really? So now it’s the video games fault that Johnny is fucked up in the head and thinks he can get a gun and just go around shooting people? That’s like buying and underage kid alcohol and then the kid wrecks his car or whatever, then blaming the maker of the alcohol. It just doesn’t make sense now does it.
Kids today are overly spoiled rotten. Don’t get me wrong, I understand parents wanting their kids to have a better life than they did. No problems with that at all, and I think every parent wants that. However, that doesn’t mean we lose sight of what’s important and give them every damn thing under the sun that they want.
Bottom line is if we as a society would take responsibility for shit and teach our kids from right and wrong and moral values, it would be a much better place. Let’s stop letting them sit in front of a TV for hours upon hours playing video games or watching TV. Get their little fat asses outside doing something. Get them involved in sports, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, something… All of that stuff provides a certain structure in their lives that is extremely beneficial. And most of all, BE A PART OF YOUR KID’S LIFE! You don’t have to be their best friend, but you need to be a role model and a mentor. So many kids today don’t respect their parents or anyone else. But that’s because their parents don’t hold them accountable.
I realize this whole rant is targeted at the people that will probably never read it, but nonetheless, I had to get it out of my system. I just get sick and tired every time a tragedy happens that we as a society have to find something to blame instead of asking the tough, hard questions.
Thankfully I have amazing parents that raised me to be the person I am today. Looking back, I am glad I had the upbringing I did. Mainly because I have an older brother, so I got to learn from his mistakes as well. LOL Pretty sure that saved me more than one ass whoopin’