What Do We Tell The Kids About #Charlottesville? [VIDEO]

What Do We Tell The Kids About #Charlottesville? [VIDEO]

What Do We Tell The Kids About #Charlottesville? [VIDEO]

Parents, depending on the age and the maturity of your children, I really hope that you have begun to explain that the world is an unfair and sometimes cruel place, filled with imperfect human beings, who are sometimes capable of great evil.

Evil like this.

We here at Victory Girls have covered what happened in Charlottesville pretty extensively, and the continuing fallout. President Trump can definitely shoulder some blame as well for coddling the alt-right, and then encouraging the three-ring-circus that was supposed to be a press conference yesterday. But I really don’t think he deserves the blame that actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan is trying to throw at him. (Language warning)


Um….


While I wasn’t a parent on 9/11, I distinctly remember having conversations with my sister about it when it happened. She was eight. The idea that anyone would intentionally fly a plane into a building to kill others was almost incomprehensible to her.

My daughter was about nine when she drew all the pieces together from our family history and said, “So, if the internment happened tomorrow, I would have to go?” That was one of the least pleasant conversations of my life.

I get it. Parenting is tough. But that isn’t exactly the president’s fault. As parents, we have to be aware of what is appropriate for our kids to see and understand. But if you have never, in an age-appropriate way, told your child or children that evil exists, and that racism is still a very real thing all over the world, then you are doing your child a disservice. In fact, that might be part of the problem that we are having now.

In the name of “safety,” childhoods have been sanitized. Kids were kept in bubble wrap. There were no winners or losers. Everything was done in the name of “fairness.” Except that the parents forgot an essential lesson.


And because things are now supposed to be fair, and evil doesn’t exist, we have outsized reactions to inanimate objects.

Should the statues come down? That’s for government and the community to decide, not the mob. As my fellow writers have pointed out, when you start, where do you stop? Should I gather up my children and go protest at the FDR Memorial in Washington D.C? When can I expect that memorial to come down, considering that his name is on Executive Order 9066?

Yes, I am being sarcastic. Those who ignore, erase, or sanitize history are doomed to repeat it. Maybe if the kids had learned about racism and evil, along with a little history, they wouldn’t be repeating the history of the Nazis versus the Communists in Weimar Germany (credit to Ben Shapiro for pointing that out).

So yes, talk to the kids in an age-appropriate manner about Charlottesville. That means that they will learn earlier than you might like that life isn’t fair, and real evil exists. But if you talk to them with an understanding of what your child can handle, and then let them ask questions, and reassure them when needed – I think we’ll all be better for it.

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3 Comments
  • SFC D says:

    Tell your children that racists and bigots come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and genders. Tell them that 2 groups of bigoted, racist a$$holes met in Charlottesville to determine who was the biggest bigoted racist a$$hole. They fought to a draw. Civility and peaceful assembly lost.

  • GWB says:

    Or a president that doesn’t condemn bigotry?

    Really? I sure thought he did. Of course, he didn’t only condemn one side’s bigotry.

    And yes, the bubblewrap generation’s parents are a big part of the problem. When you take away almost all risk in childhood, there’s no toughening up for the risks of adulthood. And you can’t take away the risks of adulthood – at least not without ending up in some dystopian Brave New World without freedom and without love.

    And I think SFC D has the right answer on what to tell your kids. And then teach them to punch back when they must, and to do it well.

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