The Penn State Debate Continues . . .
After posting a blog, Parenting Promises, I decided to start a conversation on Yelp.com because it has always been a great place to find controversial views from outrageous and sometimes extremely articulate and smart people. True to form, I got what I wanted.
Lorraine E: Conversation Starter
I’m still thinking about Penn State, because it seems parents aren’t getting the lesson. My clients are talking about enrolling their kids in martial arts training so that they can physically protect themselves if need be. Great — I love martial arts and my boys are skilled in that regard, but not because I’m afraid for them. Once you get to physical confrontation, you’re gonna get hurt even if you win the fight. I’m working with my boys to prevent the confrontation — make sure it never gets that far. I posted a blog post about this if you’re interested. I guess I just wanted to shift some focus to the need to strengthen choice-muscles in addition to physical muscles.
Javier “Javy” B. (Violence)
Totally agreed with you Lorrraine, violence creates more violence.
How people ask for peace when they are teaching their kids to fight?
Leonard “Salt Malt Frisky” L. (Violence)
you need to have your boys train in the ways of shaolin gung fu. they will dominate any threat possible
M. “Meat Baby” B. (Violence)
If you tattoo your kid- maybe one on the neck, a sleeve- there’s no way any will [mess] with him. And he won’t even have to say a word.
Gerard “Gerry” P. (Violence)
How is self defense ‘violence?’
Lorraine E: Response to Gerry P (Violence)
Gerry P. Self-defense is violence because you’re reacting to an attack. Is that still confusing? Have you ever been attacked? I have. I defended myself and it was violent. Even though I came out okay, I still got hurt– just not AS hurt as I would have been had I lost.
Jonathan S (Outrage)
I read your blog. This stands out:
“I’m outraged because those poor abused boys were never taught how to think for themselves well enough to ensure no one ever abused them in this way.”
Not only do you not know this as a matter of fact, but it clearly victimizes the victims, which is sad and disturbing.
Lorraine E. response to Jonathan S (Outrage)
Jonathan, I respect your view. I’m looking at what actually happened. Boys attending football camp were abused over a long period of time. Saying NO stops things like this from happening. If the boys were taught how to say no, then maybe they weren’t given the permission to say no? Weren’t allowed to say no? Didn’t want to say no? I don’t think the last one makes sense after reading the stories. That is why I feel the way I do. However, I only have the perspective that I have — one created by personal power. Thank you for caring enough to comment.
Brian “Give me back mah Elite” H. (Outrage)
Right, cause it’s the kids fault. Let’s not forget!
Lorraine E. response to Brian H. (Outrage)
No, not the kids’ fault Brian — It’s just something they didn’t learn how to do for themselves. They are victims of something that didn’t have to happen. I’m sad for them and wish, with all my heart, they didn’t have to have their lives ruined.
Mike S. (Outrage)
I mean…what were the kids wearing??? I mean there are certain expectations…
Jonathan S. (Outrage)
When my drunken, deranged father decided to beat me again, I said “no” and he put down that switch, hugged me and swore off alcohol forever.
When I said “no” to the rapist, he immediately apologized, gave me $100 and turned himself into the police.
When I said “no” to the CIA so they would not subject me to extraordinary rendition, they turned the plane around and took me to Disney for an all-expense’s paid 2-week vacation!
When the pedophile priest told me I would be condemned to hellfire for all eternity if I ever told what he did to me , I said “no” and he immediately apologized, gave me $5 million, and then turned himself in to the authorities.
When Nancy Reagan said “Just say no!” you could hear the sound of a million crack pipes shattering across the globe.
Lorraine E. response to Jonathan S. (Outrage)
Jonathan, I hear you and I think I understand. Saying no starts well before the face-to-face confrontation with a bad person. Knowing when a situation isn’t good for you and being able to choose something better goes a long way to keep a person out of danger. Choosing friends who don’t smoke crack means you’ll never have to put the pipe down — that’s saying no. I can’t comment on the kids who are abused by parents. They really can’t say no for a very long time. It’s just horrible. Perhaps, the legacy of not learning how to make good choices creates parents who abuse? I’m not qualified to say. All I know is that I’m doing all that I can to set my boys up on two strong legs and I’m giving them plenty of time at home to practice using them…. even when it’s uncomfortable for me.
Kate “You had me at pork” P. (Outrage)
Yes one can say ‘they’ werent taught right from wrong. But it doesn’t fall just at a parents either.
We live in a society that lays far to much importance on things like fame and money. It is very unlikely someone does something not for fame/money, pretty much everyone wants to be bigger and better in life. Take even your (Lorraine) blog for example: you aren’t just writing for the fun of it, cause if you were you wouldnt be on other social sites linking back to it which inturn gains traffic which inturn every blogger hopes brings ads/hits/money and the every exciting book deal of sorts. Money rules this society. Fame rules this society. There is a reason the USA is littered with reality TV.
And as terrible as abuse on children is (and wrong and sick and all those bad things) The fact of the matter is these boys went to a camp where the dream is to end up being famous and having a job that pays an average of $1.4 million a year. And we live in an age where people do what they do to gain fame and fortune. 14 year olds want to be popstars get plastic surgery, 12 year olds want to be models starve themselves, and young boys don’t say anything when they are touched in the shower. Because this society makes it ok, it’s not all on the parents. Everyone wants to be famous and everyone wants to be rich…….and this country breeds it.
Lorraine E. response to Kate P. (Outrage)
Awesome Kate! Awesome! My 12 year old son said the same thing! It’s true! So my reply to him, and you, is that if you know you’re talented, and you know you’re worth respect, and you know you have support from a variety of people, and you really truly want to be successful, you will know there are other ways to get there. A 12 year old only believes he/she can get what they want by trading their dignity because someone they trusted told them so. … I like money and I want to make money … lots of money. I want to have the freedom that money brings. I can’t learn, experience, share, and live a healthy life without it. So, yes I want to make money. My business model includes engaging in conversations, blogging, creating useful tools, teaching, mentoring, and a whole host of other things. It doesn’t include degrading myself, devaluing myself or my ideas, or allowing anyone to influence my boys in that direction. It’s a business model that works for me all the way around.
Thanks for adding this comment. You’re very smart.
Kate “You had me at pork” P. (Outrage)
Lorraine E. says:
… I like money and I want to make money … lots of money. I want to have the freedom that money brings.
I’m sorry… I totally get what you are saying and what you are getting at but, this made me laugh.
No money comes with freedom, and you are kidding yourself if you honestly believe differently!
I’m not saying someone needs to degrade themselves, but our society “degrades” (in a sense) everyone when it comes to the pursuit of money/fame. You can have morals and ideas and a ‘plan’ but it’s all still a path to materialism…..
Jean “Corporate Goth” C (Outrage)
While I agree that parents need to have that “stranger danger” talk with their kids, I think in this case the kids probably idolized the Penn State coaching staff. And the staff took advantage of that trust and idol worship, and turned it into something very, very wrong. The kids are not to blame here; this happened not because the kids didn’t say “no”. To say no would probably have meant them getting shunned from the spotlight, kicked off the team, etc, which would have been embarassing and disheartening for the kids. The coaching staff let the kids down at best, and irreparably harmed them, at worst.
David B. (Outrage)
Maybe I’m reading your blog wrong, Lorraine E., but it seems like you’re way of protecting kids from rape is by speaking to them as if you were Tony Robbins. How does motivational speaking protect a pre-teen, or teenager, from being molested? I also feel you’re all over the place with your examples.
Lorraine E. response to David B. (Outrage)
David B, I understand how contrary my ideas are to mainstream parenting however, if you look around you’ll find that mainstream isn’t working so well. I didn’t wait until my kids were teens, we started way, way before that. AND consider that even if a parent of teens is just starting to understand the absolute need for an individual to watch out for themselves (versus hoping someone else will — or hoping some law will protect them) please start anyway — unless of course you think it’s too late and we should just keep things rolling as they are, David. Being molested is horrible and unthinkable. For the Penn State victims, whatever support or influences or protection or motivation, or …. whatever … was given to them didn’t work and I think it would be a mistake to just put the bad people in jail and think we’ve fixed the problem.
I respect your views and I accept that they are true for you. In the end, I’m the one who decides how best to fulfill on the promises I made to my boys. I’m creating an environment in which they practice thinking for themselves and make choice-mistakes. I’m here to debrief what worked for them and what didn’t and then to encourage they try again. I believe it’s the best way to learn and it is making my influence count with them.
Thank you for your feedback. I REALLY do appreciate your comments.
Jonathan S. (Outrage)
This is why my new legislation to ban all Mommy Blogs must get bipartisan support.
I’d love to hear your thoughts about the exchange on Yelp.com. Dissenting opinions always get you thinking.
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