Are We Becoming a Nanny-Based Society?

I remember my childhood to a great extent in terms of riding my bike, rolling down the dunes of Lake Michigan, roller skating on Hessville sidewalks, Mom’s endless supply of Band-Aids, my falling out of trees, bee stings, and playing softball in vacant lots without helmets. We all received scrapes and gallons of Bactine over the years, but not one of my friends was ever killed or even seriously hurt. We were allowed to be inventive in creating our own worlds, like our front porch becoming a spaceship.

We were left to our own devices and imaginations to come up with entertainment that was rigorous at times but I believe also very healthy in allowing us to figure things out for ourselves much of the time. That freedom encouraged creativity, independence, and how to get along with others. We loved being outdoors. I see so many kids now glued to their cellphones or iPads, cheated out of a rich social development that will pass them by right into adulthood with too little social interaction with actual people instead of tiny, restrictive visual screens. I don’t know the answer to this problem (which is a national one), but I hope that there will be a national realization of what has been lost in our descent into becoming a nanny state. Kids do need guidance, and lots of it, but they also need freedom to err and to create their own solutions to life’s problems in actual, face-to-face social venues.  JB

 

About John

About John John Bolinger was born and raised in Northwest Indiana, where he attended Ball State University and Purdue University, receiving his BS and MA from those schools. Then he taught English and French for thirty-five years at Morton High School in Hammond, Indiana before moving to Colorado, where he resided for ten years before moving to Florida. Besides COME SEPTEMBER, Journey of a High School Teacher, John's other books are ALL MY LAZY RIVERS, an Indiana Childhood, and COME ON, FLUFFY, THIS AIN'T NO BALLET, a Novel on Coming of Age, all available on Amazon.com as paperbacks and Kindle books. Alternately funny and touching, COME SEPTEMBER, conveys the story of every high school teacher’s struggle to enlighten both himself and his pupils, encountering along the way, battles with colleagues, administrators, and parents through a parade of characters that include a freshman boy for whom the faculty code name is “Spawn of Satan,” to a senior girl whose water breaks during a pop-quiz over THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS. Through social change and the relentless march of technology, the human element remains constant in the book’s personal, entertaining, and sympathetic portraits of faculty, students, parents, and others. The audience for this book will certainly include school teachers everywhere, teenagers, parents of teens, as well as anyone who appreciates that blend of humor and pathos with which the world of public education is drenched. The drive of the story is the narrator's struggle to become the best teacher he can be. The book is filled with advice for young teachers based upon experience of the writer, advice that will never be found in college methods classes. Another of John's recent books is Mum's the Word: Secrets of a Family. It is the story of his alcoholic father and the family's efforts to deal with or hide the fact. Though a serious treatment of the horrors of alcoholism, the book also entertains in its descriptions of the father during his best times and the humor of the family's attempts to create a façade for the outside world. All John's books are available as paperbacks and Kindle readers on Amazon, and also as paperbacks at Barnes & Noble. John's sixth book is, Growing Old in America: Notes from a Codger was released on June 15, 2014. John’s most recent book is a novel titled Resisting Gravity, A Ghost Story, published the summer of 2018 View all posts by John →
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