My kids will undoubtedly need copious amounts of therapy for being my children.
I am hot-tempered, hard-headed, and horrendously lazy.
My intentions are among the best, most complete, and well thought out in the world. My actions…are not yet up to the mark.
Yet, as crazy as I may be, I think that many mothers out there have lost their ever-loving minds.
I started to consider whether or not I was from a different planet after the last Super Bowl halftime show.
Facebook started blowing up with moms–many Christian moms– who thought it was an awesome performance. Somehow, scantily dressed men pawing and looking up the crotch of an extremely provocatively dressed woman was admirable.
The defense seemed to be that it was a wonderful thing because J Lo was “hot”. So, if I understand correctly if she was not, say, attractive, and was just an average mom of three kids without millions of dollars to spend on her looks, the performance would not have been so great?
Apparently, it was not a problem that she was being portrayed as a piece of meat and doing things that fuel both the pornography and prostitution industry on what some believe is the biggest sex trafficking day of the year? Huh.
There were still moms–Christian moms–raving.
“Is this what you want for your daughters?” I asked over and over and over again.
I got no answers.
I think my daughter is prettier than J Lo. This is not what I want for her.
WHAT DO WE WANT FOR OUR KIDS? WHO DO WE WANT OUR KIDS TO BE?
This week Portland, Oregon moms locked arms and took to the streets. My understanding is that they were “protecting” protestors from federal police forces sent to protect federal property.
Wearing coordinating t-shirts and bike helmets, People magazine declared they were there to protect the demonstrators.
But where were the moms when this took place?
Seriously. What kind of character do we want our kids to have?
I believe in standing up and speaking out.
But I believe it must be effective. And I believe it needs to be for the right things.
Last night someone posted a video taken in the beautiful college town near where I used to live in California. “Protestors” were walking through public places and shouting in unison, “F*&#$^$%k YOUR COMFORT!” over and over and over again.
What on earth does that have to do with anything?
In an attempt to encourage elevated conversations and clarity, and to try to find like-minded people, I am going to put in writing what I believe and want other people to believe with me:
- Profanity is not the mark of intelligence. I go through seasons of cussing–and they are all seasons peppered with stress and unhappiness. F-Bombed filled rants rarely get compassion from other people. If you want people on your side, use your nice words.
- It is wrong to destroy other people’s property. I can’t believe this needs to be elaborated on, but it does. “Property can be replaced, people can’t” seems to be the rationale. Do you know what else can’t be replaced? Time. The time invested to build businesses and believe in dreams. Time spent creating art and memories. Time spent trying to get ahead and create financial stability for family…only to have it destroyed by someone who is angry about something someone else did.
- Blocking the freeway is illegal. It is not a peaceful protest if you block traffic. (**I am going to define a peaceful protest as something someone else has the choice to engage in or avoid.) Blocking traffic doesn’t give people a choice and–in my opinion–makes you a bully. It is also against the law. Even if local police “give permission”, that doesn’t make it legal. Or smart.
- It’s time we started speaking out about children being hurt. In my former California community, while blocking freeway traffic, someone smashed a car window. There was a 4-year-old in a car seat in that car. Over the 4th of July weekend, an 8-year-old girl was shot in Atlanta. An 8-year-old boy was shot in a mall in Alabama. An 11-year-old was killed in Washington DC. Add Chicago and San Francisco to the cities where kids were killed. All of them were children of color…let’s protest for those beautiful people.
What is it we really want? For weeks and weeks, violence has filled our cities. Police officers were battered and property destroyed, and there has been silence from the parents of the people doing the damage.
But as soon as the federal government decides enough is enough and takes responsibility for protecting federal property, moms hit the street. Ok.
Do I want them to have that choice and that freedom? Absolutely. I completely support the First Amendment Right to do just that.
But is that who you want your children to be?
If the protests were peaceful, would additional law enforcement be necessary?
Are you proud of your kids when they march through cities wishing ill on other people and cussing? What does “F*#$%K YOUR COMFORT” have to do with any righteous changes that may need to take place?
Have we/you, as parents, worked hard to try to provide a good life for yourself and your family? A comfortable life?
My husband and I have. We are not ashamed of that. We do not feel any obligation to martyr ourselves for the popular socialist mantra of the day.
While we have worked (sometimes effectively, sometimes not as much) for a good life, we have also served and given our time and treasure to causes and people we believe in.
Remember those books that filled our shelves when our kids were preschoolers that taught us all about natural and logical consequences? It is a natural and logical consequence that when people seek to damage and destroy federal property, federal law enforcement will step in. “Protecting” your kids from that consequence might not produce the kind of adults you want your kids to be.
It seems to me that “woke” white people are storming through the streets and social media trying to feel righteous and important by shaming those who see things differently. It seems these Portland moms want to shame the federal officers for showing up to do their jobs. Their job is to keep vandalism and destruction from continuing. I think it’s an admirable goal.
If you want me to join your cause, inspire Me. Wouldn’t we want our kids to be inspirational and informed, rather than loud and ignorant? Do we believe the “woke” protestors can define socialism? Name a successful socialist country? Name several signers of the Declaration of Independence? Know what the Magna Carta, Emancipation Proclamation, or Mayflower Compact is?
Really. That is a serious question. Do you believe the vast majority of people wreaking havoc have accurate historic knowledge and can explain the context of decisions made in the past?
How about us, the parents?
Ignorance should not win the day.
It is possible to have compassion for others without feeling shame for myself, my blessings, or even my privilege. (More on privilege another day…) I would go so far as to say, shame never helps anything, but clarity does.
So again I ask, what do we want for our kids’ lives and character? Let’s build on that.