Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Society's Mistakes

When someone speaks of "society", what do they mean? Do they mean the "culture", the "attitudes", the "values", the "ideals", the "structures", the "customs", the "norms", the "behaviors", or just, What?

Society is made of individuals, who form families, and families are the founding environment to form childhood 'hopes and dreams". But, society has not faired well on the accounts of many children, as parents are "MIA" (missing in action). Whether the parent is there physically, sometimes does not seem to matter, if they are not "present" with their children "in the moment".

Children have needs that they can't easily rationlize away. All they know is what they experience and what it made them "feel". These "feelings" are basis of forming their identity, self-esteem and values. If parents aren't around to gauge, or care about what their children do, they nor society should be surprised by misbehavior.

I don't think that when our Founders founded our nation, that they ever could envision the social challenges that we face today. There were not that many "outside forces" vying for attention. Mothers and Fathers were mostly "at home" and children sat around the family table at meal-times. Those "norms" are long gone for the American family.

Because of the social problems in our society, Society has become an entity itself. Society invades the privacy and values of other families that might have chosen different ways of addressing problems that the one force fed, because "Soceity" Must address it, or our children are doomed! Such social engineering puts those parents that desire to do right by their children at a disadvantage.

Should our society grant "perks" to those parents that do "their duty"? Should we reward good parental behavior? Would this work better than handing out monies for "the sake of the children" and not holding the parent accountable for their behavior?

Sure, there are social problems, which are really unmet needs of children and parents overwrought with the pressures of modern life, but does this mean that society's needs  outweighs "family rights"? Should society's needs made for society's mistakes? And thus, perpetuating societal crisis?


Anonymous said...

If some parents should choose to not feed and clothe their children,society has to invade the privacy of this family and intervene on behalf of the children.And if a parent should decide to refuse medication for children due to faith beliefs,society still has a responsibility and part to play in these peoples lives.

If society doesnt play a part in peoples lives to some degree it would soon become like anarchy.The fact is society needs to intervene at some stage,or else anything goes.

The problem is deciding on the boundaries.Few people would like to see children going without food or clothing.Yet some might feel refusing medicine or replacing love with shunning and manipulation of childrens minds should be deemed just fine,if it fits in with the needs of their faith.Yet how do we decide why society should be allowed right to intervene in one situation,while not being allowed right to intervene in another.The fact remains both cases will have consequences that sooner or later may end up effecting society as whole at some stage.

While we try living together in a social society we become more like one big family sitting at the same table.

Angie Van De Merwe said...

My point is not that there should be NO intervention on society's part, but HOW that intervention should take place.

I suggested there be "perks" for doing what used to be called "one's duty". In other words, rewarding good behavior. We do not do the child any "justice" in the long run, if the parents aren't "trained" how to budget, make decisions/choices that benefit the family. These "good behaviors" are what qualify the parent for monetary help. Otherwise, wouldn't the child be better off in an orphanage? of not to have been born, in the first place?

I don't think that beauracracies are efficient means of distributing or making decisions about the family. It only makes for abuses of the "system" which costs the taxpayer and limits meeting the real needs of the family.

I have questioned myself about whether it is even to the advantage of society and the child not to have the child born, rather than suffer under the hands of some parents. But, how are we to gauge when a parent is capable? Should there be a parental license, like we require for marriage? Should there be monies given toward parenting classes, childhood development, etc. that would inform those that might not have enough information?

Child abuse increases with stress and we can't ignore the economic situation in our country today. The social workers are overworked and held accountable when it is hard to make a real difference.

Our whole culture is falling apart due to the destabalization of the family. Family has to battle for time in the present and priority in the future! Many don't want to make any sacrifices to make family value decisions. And this is the real tragedy. Does one choose to have a child just because "it happens"? Or because the child is a value in himself? That is the question of where our society and its values undermine it very foundation.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you Angie destabalization of the family is the big problem.I hate to say it, but yes sadly sometimes some children would be better off not born as they will end up suffering.And explosion of population growth can sometimes have some disadvantages, as is now the case within some countries that suffer as a result.Society is often best served by first trying to lead by providing more education and folks good examples in these situations.We can lead a horse to water,but it wont drink unless tempted.

I would agree beauracracies are not such efficient means of distributing or making these decisions about the family.But when society becomes so divided and starts to fall apart as a tribe.These other sorts of problems soon arise.And left unchecked will only get worse.Modern society has lost something very important.Often we decided we didnt really need to want to even know our neighbours.Yet in doing so we foolishly dismissed the fact that choosing to not get to know our neighbours,didnt also allow us the right to refuse our need to learn how we could coexist.Because out neighbours will still live next door whether we choose to ignore them or not.

Its been a tough lesson to learn.And there is no easy way of escaping the cost either.

Angie Van De Merwe said...

I'm not sure I follow you last paragraphs, as to one's neighbors. Are you suggesting that neighbors help the family or are intervening agents for the good of society, or what?

You seem to bring up "neighbors" as foreign entities, that we have to learn to co-exist.

Yes, we have to learn to co-exist in the world, but we can refuse to engage those that are not acting appropriately regarding our national boundaries. These should be held accountable to the laws that protect the well-being of society.

But, certainly, you wouldn't suggest that we can MAKE other nations choose to co-operate, unless we use tyrannical force? I think we should leave other countries alone. If they want to kill each other, let them. Whenever we have taken it upon ourselves to "correct" or "make peace", we get into trouble and we never learn from these situations. We continue to stick our noses into everyone's business as if we "should" oversee and implement disicpline to other nations...Do you think those nations without means are going to be a danger to us?

Iran is the only "loose cap". But, with all of our Middle Eastern concern, we have stirred the pot where it boils over onto every society. And that isn't nice and neat. We have asked for it, though!

Anonymous said...

Even in our own neighbourhood building stronger relationships between neighbours can have very positive effects.

Thing is if you dont have any sort of strong relationship between your neighbour,then your neighbours kids often become more likely to think about possibility of thieving or bashing or killing somebody.Its a sad thing but none the less its very true.Relationships are what helps create and cement-bonds between people,and when societies keep relationships current and close,bonds remain wider and stronger and closer also.And in these situations kids thinking about misbehaving,know full well their misbehavior will only end up having some direct effect on their own family also.And knowledge of that fact alone has a huge deterrent effect.

So no i dont think the tyrannical force really works.It doesnt work in our own neighbourhood in the long run.And it wont work over seas in the long run either.What works is building the sparkling example,that everyone else end up liking so much,they decide themself on adopting and building a peice of it for themselves.

When founders founded your country communities were still far more close-knit.When people begin to feel valued and needed again this way,it also has a positive effects on their self-esteem and values.And then those childhood 'hopes and dreams' will begin to seem possible for more people too.At present childhood 'hopes and dreams' for many kids,will remain little more than 'dreams'.

Angie Van De Merwe said...

Integration into a community is not so easy when close bonds already exists and there is a suspcion of the "outsider". Or there is little need to make "new friends" as one has already got their "plate full" with old friends and local relations.

When we moved to our present location, my husband asked a local surgeon (who happened to chair the hospital board") if he could offer any help with the equipment...but there was little or no response.

When we tried to make a difference in our children's school situations, well, I won't go into details, but we were dismissed out of hand, with no information forthcoming...We were told in one school, basically, to "mind our own business" when we asked questions about finances...the other school was not open at all to our input as we were the ones that needed "correction", even though my husband taught there 5 days a week with overloads in his regular job, we gave financially, participated on the board, and I volunteered overseeing the study hall, lunch room duty, chairing the fund-raiser, etc.

Our neighbor across the street was an elderly lady and our sons would get her mail or do some yard work, whatever she needed...but she died in the last year. And as her son moved here about 5 years ago, and our sons had grown up, we lost contact. (It hasn't helped that we've been gone 2 of the past 4 years, either).

There have been numerous things I have suggested but have had no encouragement about...

We hosted a party for my husband's division in our home until the division got too large. We had them in sometime twice a year.

Unfortunatly, we have not been here during the summers, when we would've had more time to "meet and greet" our local neighbors. I told my husband that it would be nice to start a dinner club for the neighborhood, which we might do after he retires.

We just have no "vested interests", and little identification after all that has transpired. And I've just about decided that the Midwest is not my "cup of tea". These experiences have prejudiced me, I suppose, but how else am I to reasonably respond?