1. A parenting newsletter.
2. A newsletter for people who own cats and/or dogs.
I got the New Yorker cartoons all added on, once I realized the mistake, but I decided to keep these two things on as well because they sometimes yield interesting things. For example, I've forwarded several of the cat things to Lilla, since she owns a cat.
Well today I got the parenting one and the headline is "Kids Can Be Cruel To Overweight Children." Well no shit Sherlock! Next you'll be telling me the Pope has converted to Catholicism, that bears have been observed pooping in the woods, and that studies show water is wet! I know better than most. But I don't blame the kids, I blame the parents. Children aren't born with any prejudices, they learn them from adults. And what adults so often fail to realize is that, with children, every waking moment is a learning experience. Kids don't just learn when you want them to learn, they learn ALL THE FUCKING TIME. And they exaggerate everything they learn, too. So all it takes is one snide remark or even one bit of significant body language for children to pick up a prejudice from an adult. And since small children have usually not yet figured out that the adults in their lives are not infallible Deities who are absolutely right about everything, anything adults do is gospel to them.
Which, that's something else adults tend to forget about children: children don't learn as well from words as they do from experience. Adults tend to ignore their own personal experiences of things and go for what others tell them that they should believe and behave, while kids tend to be the opposite of that.
The worst part of all this is, there really is very little difference between children and adults. The only differences, really, is that adults are more set in their ways, are less likely to listen to their experiences, are more likely to be conformists, and tend to develop this undeserved superiority complex. It's appalling how children are treated these days. Oh sure, they're bundled up and kept "safe" - safe from experiencing the world as they should. Locked indoors, made to live in fear of everyone who isn't family, stuck in front of the boob tube. And all the while the adults tend to think themselves so superior, when it's completely undeserved. Sure, they've been around longer, and have more experience (I wonder how much "more experience" really means when most adults tend to ignore their experience), but children go from pretty much blank slates to being able to walk and talk in less than two years, even being able to learn more than one language as easily as their first. I find that incredibly impressive.
EDIT: Back to bullying, since another of the parenting newsletters talked about bullying. There was one of those advice column things in it, where these people said their 11 year old was being bullied by two different people in her school, and they were confused that the principal or whatever was asking the girl for witnesses to the bullying.
You know what? I think bullying in school should be treated the same as it's treated in real life. Someone bullies you verbally, they get charged with harassment. Someone bullies you physically, the cops come in and arrest them for assault. I seriously believe those kinds of steps should be taken; should cut the bullying down to a minimum if the kids know they'll get arrested for assault. I am not joking in the slightest about this. I really wish I could have been taken seriously - I mean really seriously, not the "oh we'll see what we can do about it" 'seriously' that I got - when I was being bullied. Which was all the way from kindergarten until graduation day of high school.
Of course, something else needs to change about the education system, too, in order to end shit like this. Schools as they are now, are propaganda-driven institutions. Know what else is an institution? Prisons. And "prison" isn't far from the truth of what a school is these days, especially with all the locker checks, security checkpoints, metal detectors and crap. Schools have always been vaguely like prisons. These days, they ARE prisons.
Well, I'm going to end this rant here.