By Lianne Castelino www.whereparentstalk.com
It is now official. The disclaimer is now not just relegated to G movies and above, various cartoons, the first 6 minutes of most newscasts, the last 2 minutes of most sportscasts, billboards, the internet, and other things I’m sure I’ve forgotten.
We have now officially added the front page of the newspaper to our list of things to keep out of reach of children (under 12). How ridiculous. My husband and I are news junkies. We cannot start the day without reading the newspaper from almost cover to cover. As a result of watching us over the years, our three children have followed suit. We are always wary of the front section of the newspaper and the litany of murders, sexual assaults, adultery, fraud and various other vices contained therein.
But when the headline of the paper reads, in size 28 font, something so crude that I will not repeat it here, we were both floored and disgusted. So now, we get to review the main section of the paper daily – quickly and hide whatever sections are not appropriate for children. Kids do not need to read this kind of stuff. We understand newspapers are struggling to be relevant in an increasingly online world, but show some sensitivity for goodness sake.
It further erodes the goal of getting kids to read letting them read what they enjoy which might just happen to be the newspaper. Why can’t we show some discretion in what is being printed, or at least save it for the last section of the last page. Whatever happened to childhood innocence and trying to preserve at least some of that?
We started scanning the paper this morning, trying to recover from yesterday’s horror. Something else to add to that endless list of parenting duties.