These are photos of my two sons and my grandchildren. As a family, we have worked at providing these children with a sense of security, an empathy towards others, the knowledge that their opinions count, and the basic premise that kindness matters in this world. We have talked to them about bullying -- both teaching them that it is wrong to bully others and also how to handle a situation where they see bullying in their daily experiences.
That said, I am absolutely appalled at the current atmosphere of hateful speech, childish name-calling, and crude remarks by the politicians seeking the nomination for President of our country. The worst offender, obviously, is Donald Trump. He has been a bully since he first announced his candidacy. Others have followed suit, even though they don't seem as comfortable doing so. I believe they may just be lowering themselves to his level in the hopes of competing with him for primary votes.
Our children are watching!! My grandchildren are actually vehemently speaking out against Trump. How bad must the situation be, when 5, 7, and 8-year olds seem to have more maturity than these men up on the podium??
We are not having debates -- we are having name-calling sessions, dissing each others' personal appearances, rather than discussing the terribly critical issues that face our country. There are serious problems in our country and in our world, and we should all be able to listen to these men and women as they carry on an adult conversation about these issues and propose solutions which are serious possibilities -- not just five-second sound bites.
I will not get into the politics of the situation, because I try to avoid politics on my blog. My concern in writing about this primary season is twofold. Most importantly, I believe we as citizens deserve better. Before I vote for someone I want to know where he or she really stands on issues. Secondly, as a grandmother, I would like all of our children to be able to listen to real substance and learn good citizenship from men and women who deserve our respect.
We cannot, on one hand, preach to our children about bullying and non-violent methods of handling situations, and on the other hand condone them hearing nothing but the "potty mouth" ramblings of these people who could possibly be running our government next year. Lord help us!!