In the eighties when I grew up, I remember reading Enid Blyton books. I enjoyed reading her books. Most of them, probably all of them, had a moral to the story. Something to be learnt. Mostly about manners and being a good friggin' person.
Then there was talk about her books being violent or politically incorrect. What they are, is a reflection of the time they were written. A reflection of the things that used be important, like morals and good manners, using your imagination and good old fashioned fun. Like climbing trees and laying on the grass, imaginary friends, daydreaming and tea parties.
I honestly don't think it would hurt kids of today to read them. I love how an innocent story about a naughty boy, or greedy girl, slowly lulling you in, becomes a just desserts lesson on how not to behave.
Is this what is wrong with the world these days? Have we forgotten about 'the moral of the story' and thrown morals out the window?
If you ask me, it seems people these days are self obsessed, and only concerned about how life affects them. Not about how life affects other people. There is no compassion or empathy. No common decency.
Maybe this is because we become desensitised, with bad news bombarding us from all directions. Good news stories barely get a look in with celebrity drama, murder, rape, violence, the modern day patheticness of politics and god know what else, assaulting our ear drums. We cower in denial of what is going on, we become numb. I know I do.
Especially when it comes to children. My soul shrinks a little bit when I hear that shit. It just shouldn't happen. I want to bury my head in the sand, concrete even. La la la, I don't want to hear it, but it's there, it's too late, my ears can't erase it. The scenes fill my brain, sadden my soul.
I don't know what to do, how to help.
All I can do is make sure I try to teach my kids to respect and treat all people the same. To use their manners and have tolerance for people who are different.
We all start out that way really, then are influenced from the people around us. Morals are learnt, as are the ethics to guide our morality. On the flip side intolerance, disrespect and prejudice are also learnt.
The homophobic parent passing negative comment on the gay couple holding hands in the supermarket.
The uncle telling racist jokes and making derogatory remarks about a race.
The father mentally abusing his wife in front of her children.
We all hold ideas, scars, that came to us after we came into the world, not knowing prejudice or maliciousness. Some of us cope better than others to the wily ways of the world. Me, I don't cope well. Maybe I read too many morally correct books when I was a kid. Maybe I grew up thinking the world was a nicer place than it is and was expecting too much.
In an ideal world, we would all be compassionate, judgeless, tolerant. But we are not living in an ideal world. It's crap. So we have to try to be more than crappy to make a difference.