According to today's regulators and bureaucrats, if you were a kid in the 50's, 60's, or 70's, you probably shouldn't have survived. Think about it...
Our baby cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paint. We had no childproof lids or locks on medicine bottles, doors, or cabinets, and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets. Not to mention the risks we took hitchhiking...
As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or airbags. Riding in the back of a pickup truck on a warm day was always a special treat.
We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle. Horrors! We ate cupcakes, bread and butter, and drank soda pop with sugar in it, but we were never overweight because we were always outside playing. We shared one soft drink with our friends, from one bottle, and no one actually died from this.
We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the street lights came on. No one was able to reach us all day. No cell phones. Unthinkable! We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then rode down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem.
We did not have Playstations, Nintendos, X-Boxes, no video games at all. No 99 channels on cable, video tape or dvd movies, surround sound, personal cell phones, personal computers, or Internet chat rooms. We had friends! We went outside and found them.
We played dodge ball, and sometimes the ball would really hurt. We fell out of trees, got cut and broke bones and teeth, and there were no lawsuits from these accidents. They were accidents. No one was to blame but us. Remember accidents?
We had fights and punched each other and got black and blue and learned to get over it.
We made up games with sticks and tennis balls and, although we were [always] told it would happen, we did not put out any eyes. We rode bikes or walked to a friend's home and knocked on the door, or rang the bell or just walked in and talked to them.
Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment. [They also had to learn to play better!] Some students weren't as smart as others, so they failed a grade and were held back to repeat the same grade. Tests were not adjusted for any reason. Horrors!
Our actions were our own. Consequences were expected. The idea of parents bailing us out if we got in trouble in school or broke a law was unheard of. They actually sided with the school or the law. Imagine that!
This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors... ever. We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility -- and we learned how to deal with it.
And you're one of them! Congratulations!
[Written by Tom Ryan of 104.3 WOMC.]