Saturday, February 18, 2006

Television: Friend, Teacher, Secret Lover

I've wondered how bad television is for kids. To me, it's the mental equivalent of smoking pot: it doesn't really hurt you but it feels good enough for you to vegetate and eat a whole bag of Extra-Ranch Doritos.

It's possible that it's not bad for children whatsoever (television, not pot).

I'm torn about this. For one thing, unless you're rich enough to have servants to entertain your children, cutting television out entirely isn't very likely. There's a reason why t.v.-free generations married their kids off by age 11.

On the other hand, the depths of many people's parenting skills is being able to work the VCR AND the DVD. "Don't bother Mommy; Dora the Explorer is on."

It's good that kids aren't being harmed but it might be better if parents still felt guilty about the electronic babysitter.

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