Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Have they lost their minds?

Last week my handsome husband and I went out on a date. It was his turn to choose the movie and he chose the latest Mel Gibson flick, Apocolypto ( We settled down in our seats at the dollar theater and I was somewhat surprised to see many parents with young children (the movie is rated "R"). About 15 minutes into the show the violence began. First, the protagonist's village in the rain forest is raided. It showed the brutal capture of the adults, the rape of some of the women and the abandonment of the children. I looked around to make sure parents were covering their children's eyes. Nope.

The movie continued to grow progressively more violent. Halfway through, the captives are lead into the Mayan capitol and three of them are sacrificed to the sun god. It showed their abdomens being sliced and their beating hearts being ripped from their chests before they are beheaded. It was gruesome. I had to cover my eyes. Surely the parents should be standing up and taking their children home at this point, right? Nope.

From that point on, the movie continued down the same violent path, showing, among other acts, stabbings, beatings, spearings, and impalements. I got up at one point to use the bathroom and heard a small boy (around 4) saying to his mom "this movie is scary." She told him to "shut up, it's just pretend." I was astounded. I went and had dry heaves in the toilet I was so upset about the poor children being subjected to this.

What is wrong with our culture when this is considered appropriate parenting? Why did the parents take their children to an "R" rated movie? If it was in err, why didn't they stand up and leave when the movie showed it's true colors? My husband pointed out that they probably just found that it was cheaper to buy tickets to the dollar theater than pay a babysitter. Ugh. Part of being a parent is doing what is best for your child. That means sucking it up and going to see "Flushed Away" or another G-rated, kid friendly flick when you cannot afford a sitter.

It seems sad to me that so many children are exposed to horrible violence like this on TV, in movies and in video games. These same kids later become angry, violent, rebellious teens and young adults. Why are we so surprised? We fill their minds with violence and wonder why violence is the end product. Maybe one reason our young people are angry is because they should have been protected.

Recently a friend was criticizing us for our plans to homeschool next year. "You don't want your kids to be sheltered, do you?" she asked. Yes! I do want my children sheltered. What is the opposite of sheltered, exposed? I certainly don't want my sweet, impressionable, vulnerable children exposed to the nastiness, amoral sexuality and senseless violence of this world. I want to allow their minds to be free from that garbage until they are old enough and have the moral foundation to process it. We certainly revel in the idea of the Lord being a refuge and shelter to us ("For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe." Ps 61:3), yet we want to deny our children the God-ordained refuge of parental discretion, forcing them to fend for themselves in a perverse world far before their hearts and minds are ready.

Philippians 4:8 says, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things." This is what we should be filling our children's minds with: pure, lovely admirable, true, noble, right, excellent and praiseworthy things.


Valorie said...

Amen, sister! I couldn't have said it better. It makes me sick what parents subject their kids to nowadays. I really want to homeschool too!

Jacki Marie said...

I am always amazed to see this ignorance. They don't think they are harming their children, and then they wonder why their teenagers have gone astray. I am proud to say my teenagers trust me, and they don't cave into peer pressure.

I just discovered this blog and read some of your older posts. Like you I am pregnant, but this is my 6th. My 5th is almost 9. This is God's plan and I'm just along for the ride. Wanna read about the amazing thing God is doing in my life?

Unknown said...

I agree. And I am frequently accused of being overprotective with my children. But that's okay.

I'm enjoying your blog - we have a lot in common. I'm a Christian, homeschooling mom who used to teach Bradley childbirth classes and was a La Leche League leader for many years. I found your blog link from Splitcoast Stampers.

Erin said...

Seriously what is wrong with people! That makes me sick and angry all at the same time.

I can't watch that type movie myself, I can't imagine showing it to a kid. Thanks for the discription I know for SURE now I won't watch it.

BTW I saw your blog link on the thread on SCS about the Duggar family. :) LOVE your cute family.