If South Carolina’s new law passes, it will be the second state to have a free range parenting law. Utah enacted asimilar law last May. The law redefined neglect and said that if a child’s basic needs were met, he or she could “engage in independent activities.”
But the biggest danger is raising a generation of children who believe they are fragile and helpless — and that everyone is out to get them. Scared, helpless children are more likely to grow up into scared, helpless adults. The type of people who want the State to protect them and prop them up. The type of people who don’t believe in individual responsibility.
Half of children worldwide get less than an hour outside each day. That’s less than U.S. prison inmates.
By Jennifer Lade
“It’s 10 p.m. Do you know where your children are?” intoned a PSA from the 1960’s.
Today’s version is more like, “It’s 3 p.m. Are you holding your 12-year-old’s hand?” as people have become less tolerant of kids ever being unsupervised by adults.
But maybe, finally, the pendulum is swinging back toward sanity. That’s the case in South Carolina, which is considering a “free-range…
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First of all, calling them “Free range kids” sounds like they are animals as in “Free range chickens.” Also, children live in a different world than the one I grew up in. Sure, we played outside all day until the street lights came on and I cannot remember any of us getting abducted. But nowadays, even with security cameras on the outside of homes, predators are driving down the street, attempting to entice children into their cars with promises of treats. I just read a couple weeks ago about a child who was playing in the front yard and a car pulls up and a man is attempting to entice the child into his car, but she runs back inside the house. And this was all recorded on the surveillance camera. We didn’t need those back in the day either. In fact, we hadn’t even heard of surveillance cameras.
I don’t care what others do, but when I was raising my son, I was outside watching him play with his friends because no pervert was going to drive by and I’m sitting somewhere weeping because I took my eyes off him for a second and voila, he is whisked away.
And just to show you how quickly something can happen, I was away on a business trip and my ex-husband, being the piece of shit he was, let our son go off with one of his friends and guess what. He got hit by a car while trying to cross the street. The child’s arm was broken, his shoulder was torn to pieces, his ankle was broken and he looked like he had been hit by a Mack truck. That is how quickly something can happen to a child when an adult refuses to act like an adult. This never would have happened if I had been home because when he wanted to go somewhere, I walked him to where he was going and back. You can tell a child a million times to “Look both ways before crossing the street,” but when it is all said and done,children are children for a reason and adults are adults for a reason. We were children once and we learned what to do to keep our children safe from what we experienced as children. It’s called “Live and learn,” not “Live and stay stupid.”
I totally agree, Shelly. It has to depend on parental discretion. I think the point of the law is to empower parents to decide when their kids are ready to take on some activities independently in their particular city or neighborhood. And I suspect a lot of parents are going to need parenting advice in order to make that determination. Personally I’m glad to see the topic because at present I feel many children spend way too much time on screens and in scheduled activities. My experience has been that children must spend a minimum amount of time in free play (supervised but not structured by adults) to develop good social skills. I’m also aware it’s a real balancing act in the US, given the rapid breakdown of American communities.
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