A Letter from New York Click here After you have read each story or article, answer the questions in the Answer Section.
May Adults lie constantly to kids. I'm not saying we should stop, but I think we should at least examine which lies we tell and why. There may also be a benefit to us. We were all lied to as kids, and some of the lies we were told still affect us.
So by studying the ways adults lie to kids, we may be able to clear our heads of lies we were told. I'm using the word "lie" in a very general sense: Though "lie" has negative connotations, I don't mean to suggest we should never do this—just that we should pay attention when we do.
All adults know what their culture lies to kids about: But if a kid asks you "Is there a God? The biggest disagreements are between parents and schools, but even those are small. Schools are careful what they say about controversial topics, and if they do contradict what parents want their kids to believe, parents either pressure the school into keeping quiet or move their kids to a new school.
The conspiracy is so thorough that most kids who discover it do so only by discovering internal contradictions in what they're told. It can be traumatic for the ones who wake up during the operation. Here's what happened to Einstein: Through the reading of popular scientific books I soon reached the conviction that much in the stories of the Bible could not be true.
The consequence was a positively fanatic freethinking coupled with the impression that youth is intentionally being deceived by the state through lies: By 15 I was convinced the world was corrupt from end to end.
That's why movies like The Matrix have such resonance. Every kid grows up in a fake world. In a way it would be easier if the forces behind it were as clearly differentiated as a bunch of evil machines, and one could make a clean break just by taking a pill.
Protection If you ask adults why they lie to kids, the most common reason they give is to protect them. And kids do need protecting. The environment you want to create for a newborn child will be quite unlike the streets of a big city.
That seems so obvious it seems wrong to call it a lie. It's certainly not a bad lie to tell, to give a baby the impression the world is quiet and warm and safe.
But this harmless type of lie can turn sour if left unexamined. Imagine if you tried to keep someone in as protected an environment as a newborn till age To mislead someone so grossly about the world would seem not protection but abuse. That's an extreme example, of course; when parents do that sort of thing it becomes national news.
But you see the same problem on a smaller scale in the malaise teenagers feel in suburbia. The main purpose of suburbia is to provide a protected environment for children to grow up in.
And it seems great for 10 year olds. I liked living in suburbia when I was I didn't notice how sterile it was. My whole world was no bigger than a few friends' houses I bicycled to and some woods I ran around in.
On a log scale I was midway between crib and globe. A suburban street was just the right size. But as I grew older, suburbia started to feel suffocatingly fake. Life can be pretty good at 10 or 20, but it's often frustrating at This is too big a problem to solve here, but certainly one reason life sucks at 15 is that kids are trapped in a world designed for 10 year olds.
What do parents hope to protect their children from by raising them in suburbia? A friend who moved out of Manhattan said merely that her 3 year old daughter "saw too much. I think it's the anger that would worry me most if I had a 3 year old. I was 29 when I moved to New York and I was surprised even then.I’ve had this thought in my head for a while now.
I’ve been thinking that I can’t afford for my wife to be a Stay-At-Home Mom. Now, I don’t at . While an essay prompt can serve as an inspirational launch point for a brilliant topic or story idea, over the years I have found many students get too caught up in trying to decide which prompt.
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