Is there something in the water in Luton?
A recent survey of 1,600 children in Luton, England turned up some interesting answers. Among them:
–Simon Cowell was rated more famous than God
–The very best thing in the world is “good looks”
–The very worst: being fat
–Second worst: divorce
–What rules would they make were they king/queen of the world? Ban divorce
Hmmmm…perhaps kids in Luton are a little stranger than most, or perhaps they watch more TV. Perhaps the survey givers asked the questions in an odd way that influenced the answers…we can think of a bunch of “perhapses,” but taking things at face value, dare I say: this is not good.
This confirms what I’m seeing in my circles: kids are overly saturated by exposure to entertainment media. Of course, you can’t expect a 10-year-old to give incredibly deep answers (for example, when she was 10, my sister was asked “what’s the best thing about summer?” Her answer: snacks.), but c’mon.
This represents a failure of parents and adults to engage the young in meaningful things, and it shows that we are abdicating our roles to the electronic nanny. This gives a whole new depth of meaning to the phrase “in loco parentis.”
This study should raise eyebrows even amongst atheists. Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins and their ilk would be more than happy with God being relegated to the trash heap of irrelevance, but most atheists in intellectual history, from Sartre to Nietzche, at least held that the idea of God was important, even if they thought he didn’t exist. The results from the survey show an increased fascination in all things trivial.
Billy Bush on his radio show put it nicely tonight (even if he was being tongue-in-cheek): “kids–less TV, more reading.”
You know what, though? The last tidbit on kids wanting divorce to be banned is interesting. Geez, the Bible was right: not all lifestyle choices are equal. Some, especially in the areas of sexuality and relationships, are particularly destructive, and the kids’ answer shows that. Isn’t it odd that such an old book would get something like this right (end sarcasm)?
I don’t want to be a chicken little or an old-timer (“kids these days…”), but really, this is yet another gauntlet for adults charged with caring for youth (that’s all of us, btw). Will we pick it up? Will we care enough to get our acts together?
What do you think?
In addition to the articles linked above, some other related posts are:
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