Quotations with a Perspective on Parenting and Children
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I see no hope for the future of our people if they are dependent on the frivolous youth of today, for certainly all youth are reckless beyond words. When I was a boy, we were taught to be discrete and respectful of elders, but the present youth are exceedingly wise and impatient of restraint.

Hesiod, Eighth Century B.C

 

A boy must hold his tongue among his elders. . . . Greed was abhorred, it was taboo to snatch Radish tops, aniseed, or parsley before your elders, Or to nibble kickshaws and giggle and twine one's feet. . . . So, you shall learn to hate the Agora, And shun the baths and feel ashamed of smut; . . . And to get up and give your seat to your elders, And not to behave towards your parents rudely.

Aristophanes

 

The purpose of raising children is simply to help them out of our lives into successful lives of their own

The secure child has no compulsion to misbehave, no neurotic need to attract attention for the mere sake of attention. He is secure not only because his parents love him, but also because they discipline him well.

John Rosemond

 

We all have troubles, great or small, and we all take them out on our children to some degree.

Benjamin Spock

 

Meanwhile, changes in society -- above all, a rising divorce rate, a phenomenal increase in the number of working mothers, the takeover of the home by television -- have created a world that is inimical to children.

Joan Acocella's review of "Raising America: Experts, parents, and a century of Advice about Children. in the New Yorker

 

I learned [as a youth] that when I defended my rights by open rebellion my father relented, but when I remained meek and submissive he only cursed
and beat me the more
.

Mao Tse-Tung in Edgar Snow's _Red Star Over China_ [1961],
Chapter 4, Section 1)

 

In many ways we live in an antichild culture. I recognize it because when we travel to other countries, more child-friendly places, the difference is amazing. In countries where the birth rate is high, there are simply more children around. They play in the road, they accompany their parents everywhere, and no one seems to make a fuss that children are about. They are part of life, part of what adults do--have and raise children. But in Western culture, children are the oddities.

 Meredith Small in Kids: How Biology and Culture Shape the Way We Raise Young Children.

 

I think all of those good things about the sixties, all of that energy and ambition and revolution made us self-centered. I think for all the talk about doing things for community and changing the world, we are pretty self-centered people. Those of us who thought about career, who invested in career, that’s taken time away that from other generations of women would have given to family.

Woman interviewed for the PBS show Frontline’s show entitled “Hilary’s Class” 

 

Childcare is one of the most important issues facing this country today. The working mother has to take her child to a nanny. The nanny has to take her child to a babysitter. The babysitter has to take her child to daycare. On the count of three, I want everybody to take care of their own damn kids!

Chris Rock in the movie "Head of State"

 

The following is from a converstation between a boy, "Ares" and his
mother, "Laurel" after Ares' coach repirmands the boy

Just cut it out baby," Laurel said gently that night, after Ares had told her about the coach's talk. He had a habit of telling his mother all the bad things he did. He was like a dog in this way, showing up at the door with a half-chewed rat in its mouth, asking for approval. "O.K.," Ares said, deflated. Something about his mother's care seemed uncaring. There was too much acceptance in it, a disarming lack of judgement."

Marissa Silver in "The God of War"

 

By nominating candidates for positions on the U.S. Supreme Court who 
oppose abortion, President Bush unwittingly risks contributing to death 
and violence. A study conducted by John J. Donohue III of Stanford 
University and Steven D. Levett of the University of Chicago found the 
Roe vs. Wade decision played a significant role in reducing violent 
crime during the past decade. They determined the legal abortions 
performed after Roe vs. Wade (1973) prevented unwanted children who 
likely would have engaged in violent crimes starting in their late teens 
(about 1990). During the 1990s, the homicide rate dropped 33 percent. 
But an issue larger than abortion is at stake - reason vs. religious 
dogma. The welfare of the body politic cannot be entrusted to those who 
are guided by dogma. Dogma is subjective, while reason is objective, and our leaders and judges must be objective. Reason dictates attaining 
quality of life for the citizenry. Religious dogma mandates quantity of 
life without consideration for the future of the unwanted child, the 
physical and mental health of the mother and the adverse affects 
unwanted children and frustrated parents have on society



David N. Mile

 

You don't have to suffer to be a poet: Adolescence is enough suffering for anyone. 

John Ciardi 

 

 

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