Thursday, October 26, 2006

Marginalizing Sharing

Whenever I take my older child, a near two-year old, out to the park or library, I invariably have to deal with idiotic local parents. One thing I absolutely can’t stand is them screaming at their kids to “share”. Some child will be playing with a ball or Matchbox car, my son will run up, articulate some curiosity in the toy and then the same scene erupts, every single day.

"Adam, share your car!"

"Alyssa, no one will want to play with you if you don’t share!"

"Buckley (actual name I heard the other day), you have one, give him the other!"

Many of these Moronic parents make such a ruckus over this nonsense simply because I, and other parents, am there. Remember, these days parents are all about themselves and they most certainly don’t want their peers thinking they are derelict - especially in groupthink-plagued Boston.

Yes, it’s not the worst thing in the world to say "share". But do it once and don’t make such a big deal about it.

But quite frankly I am AGAINST SHARING. Sometimes I quip at these stupid blathering parents, "That’s okay, we don’t believe in sharing". They smile and erroneously assume I jest.

How are you helping your kid by inculcating the lesson that they are entitled to what others possess?

If there is something my son wants, then he should figure out how to acquire it for himself. He can mow the lawn for instance to earn some money. I have already got my son doing housework and he won’t be two for a month.

Now say my son ran up and procured a toy from little Jacob at the park. He would be wrong to do this and would be admonished, BUT he’d be teaching Jake an important life lesson, namely that people are always going to try to take his things. The same applies to my son. Others will try to dispossess him throughout his life. Shouldn't he be prepared for this and know how to protect himself?

Another example.

At the supermarket I shop at in West Roxbury, every weekend there are kids PANHANDLING out front – asking for donations to support their baseball, basketball, or other youth sports team. What kind of crap is this? Have a bake sale or a raffle, get a local business to sponsor your team, or perhaps have your parents pay for the activity.

Let me emphasize that these are not underprivileged kids. They are middle-class white kids, standing there in uniform with usually a father or two nearby. Next time I may holler at the dad,

"What the heck kind of a parent teaches their kid to beg?!?!?!?!"

Yeah people in Boston are SOOOOO smart, teaching their kids a sense of entitlement and dependency.

What could possibly be worse than depriving young children of their full human potential?

SHARING is for Commi’s.


Tax Shelter said...

Well, how can you explain this blog if you don't believe in sharing? Aren't you sharing your ideas and opinions with everybody?

I think sharing in itself is OK when it's not forced. The problem comes when the government forces people to share, e.g., income redistribution. Forced sharing is bad.

CaptiousNut said...

No doubt many would argue that my blog is pollution or some other negative externality. Perhaps Mankiw could arbitrate that debate.

Yes, coerced sharing is the more precise characterization of the problem. (Income redistribution was my implied bogeyman.)

Nonetheless, self-reliance is a virtue too unevenly distributed these days. Parents are wantonly complicit in that.

CaptiousNut said...

I don't think I am in violation yet, but hope to soon be.

It's good to hear from you Brookline Mark but I think my son was offended the last time he saw you.

Perhaps it was the bumper sticker on your hybrid car?