Thursday, April 05, 2007

Teach Your Children Well

Teach Your Children by Crosby, Stills & Nash

You, who are on the road must have a code that you can live by.
And so become yourself because the past is just a good bye.
Teach your children well, their father's hell did slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams, the one they fix, the one you'll know by.
Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

And you, of the tender years can't know the fears that your elders grew by,
And so please help them with your youth, they seek the truth before they can die.
Teach your parents well, their children's hell will slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams, the one they fix,the one you'll know by.
Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

I agree with the author of this letter:

April 5, 2007, ST Forum
Wardrobe malfunction? Teach our kids proper values

I REFER to the letter, 'Models exposed too much, by design or otherwise' (ST, April 3), by Ms Wong Kam Fong.
I disagree with the writer's view and her suggestion of regulating fashion shows. If so, we will also have to regulate shows like music concerts, telling the superstar singers and dancers to be discreet with their clothing.

We have to restrict Jolin Tsai from revealing her cleavage, Alex To from taking off his top and Madonna from wearing her undergarments on stage because these shows have also a large number of children watching.

No, I am not suggesting that we should encourage indecency on public shows. I think the key is on education. We should teach our kids to be able to receive information of all kinds, analyse them and learn from it.

We should teach our kids to be able to identify the good and bad information, put them to good use in their life.

Yes, all these can be done through parents teaching their kids proper Values. Shutting out such information from our kids through regulations is not going to help - we are not teaching them how to face the real world, instead, running away from it.

Our kids will grow up not being able to face reality but run away from it. Our kids should be able to look at the exposed breast of the model and say 'Oops! Okay, if I am the designer or the workers backstage in future, I will make sure this blunder does not happen and put the model in such an awkward situation'.

Our Government has so far done a lot in this aspect and constantly reviews its regulations to meet the standards of the ever changing world.

Even with such stringent regulations on our land, we still have problems with our kids. We have a nine-year-old child getting pregnant, teens having multiple sex partners and teens who think there is nothing wrong having pre-marital sex and no qualm filming themselves doing it.

We can stop pornographic materials on our land, we can stop Crazy Horse from advertising but we can't stop the Internet world from having pornographic materials, we can't stop the people on the streets from wearing revealing clothing, we can't stop accidents happening on fashion shows, showing off the wrong things.

Go to the news-stands and you will see that almost every issue of fashion, entertainment, women's and even car magazines have models in bikinis, lingerie or clothing that reveals lots of cleavage or legs on the cover.

Yes, Ms Wong has a valid concern. But I think the way to deal with it is to educate our kids with proper values and face it with the right attitude and not regulating and avoiding it.
Parents and schools play an equally important part in teaching our kids correct values of life and shaping their character to meet the challenges of the world.
Lim Soo Huat

It's hard to shíeld one's children from the "badness" of our world. Technology has made it so easy to access information through the Internet. There is Internet radio, video websites like YouTube, even Internet TV. Attempts at censorship by blocking websites can be bypassed using proxies (personal experience here!).

I know of parents who do not allow their children to watch "Power Rangers" or MTV because of violence in the former & promiscuity in dressing, explicit lyrics in the latter. It's easy to do so when the children are toddlers & preschoolers. But once they reach school-going age, & we let them out into the big, wide, scary world, they will start to pick up things from their friends.

So Mr Lim has it right when he says we need to teach our children well, starting from home. Having strong values & morals will allow our children to see for themselves what is right or wrong, what is inappropriate & what is not. Blocking out what we don't want them to see or hear is not going to work. Eventually, they will have to grow up & decide for themselves what is good or bad. We need to help them start building up a strong moral center, beginning when they are children, and continuing through their teen years so that when the time comes, they can make the right decisions in their own journey through life.

1 comment:

Television Watch said...

You raise some good points in your post. Here are some facts that you might find interesting. An overwhelming majority of Americans (91%) object to government deciding what they are able to watch on television. When activists talk about protecting children instead of parents—here’s what they’re talking about: sixty-eight percent of the country’s 110 million television-viewing households do not include children under age 18 and households with children have different challenges to face due to the varying ages of kids within each family. Currently, there are 11 million households with children age 6-11, 15 million households with children age 0-5 and 9 million households with children 12-17.

TV has come a long way from the days of three channels and rabbit ears antennas. Today’s TV audiences are putting to use broadband, DVRs, TV video on demand, iPods and cell phones to greatly expand their choices about what, when, where and how to watch TV. New technology means consumers have more selection than ever and more control than ever over what they see on TV. We all have more choices and parents have more tools to ensure their kids only see what’s right for them. Let’s let parents decide—not government, for all of us.

There is more information to be found at