Monday, January 12, 2009

"I was just thinking how it sucks to be in my generation"

Last night as we sat down to dinner, our twelve year old was abnormally quiet. I kidded him about not liking what Jeanne had prepared for dinner and he blurted out .. "I was just thinking how it sucks to be in my generation." He proceeded to talk about the talk about Yellowstone exploding - he has a keen interest in geology - and then on to global warming at which point he broke down crying. Will watches the news with great interest and I'd be willing to venture that having two science geeks as parents, he's more in tune with what's going on in the natural world than most 12 year olds. But there's still a very strong sense of a loss of innocence and as a parent it makes me angry. Why should a 12 year old have to be worrying about global climate change? For that matter why should a 12 year old have to be worrying about a tank roaring down his street shooting white phosphorus laden shells? Or worrying about rocket falling out of the sky onto his school building?
We talked about his fears this morning on the way to school. We talked about how we can't let fears like that dictate our lives and that when we feel compassionate about something that we need to speak out about it. We talked about what we wanted to do when we take our trip to Atlanta and he said rather than Coke World, he'd like to visit the King Center or the Carter Center. How 'bout them apples.


jeanne leigh said...

wow, your son sounds like a very intelligent, caring young man. How wonderful. You are so right that he shouldn't be faced with these things. Sounds like he is making very good decisions with what he is seeing and feeling. Awesome. Peace, Jeanne

LKF said...

What a perceptive, compassionate son you have - a testament to his parents, I'm sure! It's indeed daunting to think of all that he will see and experience in his lifetime, but with his heart in the right place, he will be one of those who can make a difference. (And I hope he LOVES the King Center - one of my favs!)

David said...

Thanks for sharing this, Jeff. Kids shouldn't have to worry about the world falling apart, though too many children in the world do. We are forunate that our children live in a place where such worry seems unnecessary. Because we live in such a place, we need to do just what you did with Will, tell him that we cannot live out of fear, but instead should live out of love and work to create a less fearful world.