When I switch on my pc, I read the news, then I check my mail, after which I check my blog worlds. Yes, I have a few ;)
The first thing that caught my eye this morning was a photo of a young boy and girl in a ballroom setup. The story was about the revival of the cadets in Russia. "A Russian cadet leads a girl for a waltz during a grand cadet ball in an old estate in Moscow, Russia, November 4, 2007. Cadet schools are reestablishing the old Russian tradition. Grand balls usualy were devoted to the biggest historic events, as the one that marks the day of liberation from Polish occupation in 1612. (Sergei Chirikov/EPA)" My first thought was that that was wonderful. It is part of their history and their culture. I have always maintained that just because there is something wrong with a society, it doesn't mean you abolish all parts of it. That is akin to tossing your entire pantry because a slice of bread goes moldy.
One person commented that "I think that teaching children how to act "proper" is all well and good, but in Russia, these children are FORCED into military schools at ages of 5 and 6. They are also brain washed into thinking that "mother russia" is all that matters. They have kind of a 1940's german outlook on life. Russia has some issues that I find to be just flat out wrong." Personally, I feel that if anyone has a 1940's German (I say that hesitatingly because it also shows labelling and prejudice) attitude, it is this person. So Russia has issues, but then, so does South Africa, USA, Australia, Timbaktu. The kid was 'forced' into cadets at the age of 5? Heck, kids get 'forced' into education at that age. What kid of that age can book himself into (or out of) an institution or a way of life? Brainwashed? Hm... yes... he is probably being brainwashed into showing some etiquette, something sadly lacking in a large part of today's world.
The next article had me dumbfounded. A girl is given detention for hugging her friends. What next? I appreciate that the school is trying to rule out a certain kind of behaviour, but what are they teaching the children... that affection is bad? Actually, yes, that is what they're teaching. Their school handbook says: “Displays of affection should not occur on the school campus at any time. It is in poor taste, reflects poor judgment, and brings discredit to the school and to the persons involved.” Tell me if this isn't somewhat warped thinking.
I think the news sites were on a roll, as I went straight into yet another article. This one is of a school that has banned games like tag. Why? Because it's dangerous. I do know that falling out of bed and hitting your head can be dangerous, so that makes waking up in the morning pretty hazardous. One mother commented in the article: "I've witnessed enough near collisions." I wonder if her child flies to school to avoid near collisions on the way. I'm sorry. I know that last comment was probably very extremist too, but...
To protect my child, I'd have had to put her in a bubble from birth. She's been on a collision course with life since the day she took her first breath. Heck, she's even proud of her collection of scars she's gathered on the way. Oh... and she hugs. She hugs a lot. She'd hug more if she could. Cadets... she'd give anything to take part. She loves uniforms, rituals, formality and organised cameradie. And yes, she will, no doubt comment on this blog, saying all the right things, but that is because I've brainwashed her ;-)