Thursday, April 19, 2012

Parents Sue Apple for Making “Highly Addictive” games… and a Few Other Signs America’s Future Is in Jeopardy

There are three disturbing child-related news stories circulating right now, each varying drastically but still equally indicative of just how far we’ve slid as a nation.

First up, parents are apparently suing Apple, Inc., alleging that the company deliberately designs “games [to be] highly addictive,” which then “tend to compel children playing them to purchase large quantities of game currency, amounting to as much as $100 per purchase or more.”

Then there’s the fact that the Los Angeles Unified School District is actually considering a plan to reduce the number of credits students need to graduate high school, from 230 to 170. And that’s in addition to making electives entirely optional to each individual student. According to CBS’ Los Angeles chapter, “This would allow students to repeat classes or get tutoring during the school day.”

Meanwhile, down in Houston, four teens – two girls and two boys – have been charged with the murder of a homeless man. Their alleged motivation was the $1 dollar he had on him at the time.

Seriously. And this is America’s future.

A few notes about each:

  • To the parents upset that their children spent so much money on Apple’s digital accessories, there’s an ap for that: It’s called supervision… as in you taking a less superficial, less ignorant interest in what your kids are doing every day.
  • To the LA school board trying to make it easier for kids to graduate from an already severely lacking education system: How about trying to inspire them to greatness instead of encouraging them to seek special treatment? Shocking though that concept might be, it might actually work… and it probably couldn’t do any more damage than the current course of sub-par expectations does.
  • To the teens who murdered the homeless man in Houston: You four serve as an excellent example of what the ill-advised “carpe diem” mentality the entertainment industry shamelessly peddles can lead to. Just because the thought pops into your head doesn’t mean it needs to be acted on. Especially in the case of messing with another person’s life.

While children are each accountable for their own actions just like adults, the three examples above indicate just how easy it is these days to make bad decisions in life.

Refusing responsibility is encouraged everywhere: At home, at school and in entertainment. And don’t tell me I’m stretching on the last one when so many songs today are blatantly or indirectly about ignoring potential consequences and treating other people with contempt.

When children act on those messages the adults inexcusably send them, it’s a very frightening sign that we’re doing something incredibly wrong. And if we with our ignorant mentalities are producing such disappointing offspring, how much worse is the next generation going to be?

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