Adults set the example for youth
I believe our young ones need more to do in our communities than sitting at home watching TV, texting or playing computer games. I don’t text, don’t know how and have no desire to learn. TV and computer games are bad input for our children. No wonder our children can be disrespectful, rebellious and have a greater chance of engaging in illegal activity — it’s the programming they get from the day they are born.
It has to start with a good family environment. Children need love and security in their lives, starting with the home in which they are raised. Their parents are crucial in their lives. They also need good activities and exercise. Group activities with adult supervision is a major plus. School gyms could be opened every day with all kinds of activities — our gym was when I was growing up. We could play basketball, or half the gym was set up with a trampoline and the other half was dodge ball or badminton. Outside was a track, football field, baseball diamond and basketball courts, and a large area for games like kick ball. Being an Air Force brat, there were lots of activities — the bowling alley for 25 cents, movie theater for a dime, swimming pools, but the best to me was the teen center. It had two pool tables, a ping-pong table, a room with comfortable couches to just hang out with each other, and dances every weekend. Or we could go on a scavenger hunt for things hidden by staff in and around the building. There was always something to do that was good for us mentally and physically, and also taught us to be respectful to each other and to our elders while having fun.
I grew up in a “Leave It To Beaver” home, very loved and feeling totally secure. I never once heard an argument between my parents. My sister and I were very close through our childhood and are still like best friends today. In high school, she never rode the bus; I took her to school and toted her books to class. People that did not know her might have thought we were going together, but we were just close and always looked out for each other, as it should be. But it starts with parents. It is our responsibility to our children to give them a loving, secure home. It starts with our behavior as adults to set the right example so our children will grow up with good morals and be respectful of others.