Saturday, May 18, 2013

Take Our Children to the Park...and Leave Them There Day

Tip of the hat to Tom Hoffman, who (once again) pointed me in the right direction.

Today is "Take Your Children to the Park...and Leave Them There Day," founded by Lenore Skenazy four years ago.

Makes sense--kids spend well over 50 hours each week gazing at glass screens living in a world dominated by creepy adults who like to make children feel insecure enough to buy trinkets and calories they do not need. Fat, unhappy adults keep our consumer economy humming. Heck, diabetes alone kicks in $175 billion each year to the medical field.

Ms. Skenazy makes her case in Slate this week, and it's a good one. The comments, however, are disturbing. Here's the most recent:
"This author is an idiot and 
should have her children taken away...."
The chances of your child being assaulted by the mythical creepy adult who hangs at the park are far lower than the chances of your child getting abused by a blood relative, a coach, or the clergy. Kids run away from creepy strangers.

The chances of your child running into a creepy adult online who wants to reduce her to a piece of meat is 100%--and it's the predators we trust that are the problem. Phil Knight (CEO Nike), Muhtar Kent (CEO Coca-Cola, though he promises not to advertise to children under 12), and Thomas R. Greco (President Frito-Lay North America) all work hard to sell to your children.

Just what is Nike selling?

It's OK, though--when your children come of age, there will be more than enough Budweiser and Zoloft to tame the undercurrent of sadness that defines too many lives, and there'll be plenty of Humulin at your local pharmacy Walmart.

For a few hours today, a host of children will not be buying a blessed thing as they romp under the skies instead of the guise of grinning men who harm children every day. I'll take my chances with the guy in the park.

Happiness costs less than Zoloft.
Nike ad from


Malcolm Chrystal said...

Nike is selling shoes, obviously? technical difficulties with a tree...EVER (unless it is binding your chainsaw).
Thanks Dr. Doyle!

doyle said...

Dear Malcolm,

True, but Phil is also selling sex, self esteem, and all kinds of shite we don't need--but you know this already.

No reason to apply a chainsaw onto a tree except for exceptional reasons. The only time I even needed a chainsaw was when I was a stevedore, picking up old barges.

Thanks for the kind words....

Malcolm Chrystal said...

I built a house out of trees once. It was exceptional(ly) difficult!
Heated and cooked with them for a number of years at the same time!
My chainsaw got bound quite a bit!

I extend a warm invitation if you ever find yourself in Vancouver!

Anonymous said...

Very informative post- thanks.