Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Conservatives Need To Chill Out

A conservative site which will remain nameless has a post today about progressive attitudes toward children. It is perhaps fair game to point out that because progressives as a group have fewer children, they might value children less. But I don't see how that applies to the liberals who actually do have children of their own. The post itself, and certainly the comments, included dire warnings about how bad liberals' children were going to turn out, and what bad parents they are.

Go back to the dugout, shortstop. Don't automatically conclude parenting values from political values which include some of the same words. More importantly, while parenting may be the largest factor in how children turn out, it may not be a majority factor and is certainly not overwhelming. Genetics (especially temperament), siblings, neighborhood, churches, friends, schools, books, media and chance all play their part as well.


Jerub-Baal said...

I have noticed an unfortunate tendency among conservatives to equate being a "prophet" with being a "crank". As an example, those pundits who talk (realistically and insightfully) about the degradation of modern culture and then blow their whole argument by saying that all modern music is uniquely bad and immoral compared to music of previous generations. This ignores those musicians who's music is culturally conscious (even in one case that comes to mind, referring to Wuthering Heights or to Citizen Kane) and also ignores earlier pop music references to drugs and immorality (such as "Minnie the Moocher"). And lets not forget all those nearly explicit bawdy songs from the 17th century (that you can get now on CD).

To convince someone that you are in the right takes a focussed view of one problem. The prophets of old were so because they spoke the specific directives of God (or for a modern idiom, the directives of morality), not for randomly complaining.

Jerub-Baal said...

OK, sorry, first line a little confusing. What I meant is that some pundits think they are being a prophet when they are merely being cranks.


terri said...

Having seen terrific kids come from truly abysmal parenting, and rotten kids come from "correct" parenting....I have to agree.

That, and the fact that I was a wretchedly smart-a$$ed child who eventually grew out of it and remembers, with great embarrassment, some of the things I said and did as a child...I tend to think that there is only so much shaping a parent can impose upon a child.

Lots of little bratlings grow up and out and of their behavior. I like to think of myself in that vein.

Ben Wyman said...

It's also a pretty rough call to say that parenting differently from how you parent is absolutely wrong. Bad or neglectful parenting is one thing, but telling someone that all the values they are raising their kids with are wrong is incredibly insulting.

Speaking of raising children, Kendrick Perkins just moved his family in next door to one of my good friends down here. I want to go over there and give that man a hug of congratulations, but I'm afraid he'll crush me.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

I loved Kendrick Perkins last year, before it was cool. Now everyone is on the bandwagon.

Everyone up here, that is.

kreiz1 said...

So who's Kendrick Perkins? I'll have to find out.

Total agreement, AVI. No correlation between parental political views and the ultimate kiddo product. It's silly to suggest otherwise. Oh, were things that simple.

kreiz1 said...

Guess my lack of NBA knowledge is evident. Hey, all I know are the Celt's Big 3. Sorry.