When I was young, I used to hear how the world was, “going to hell in a hand basket,” but never gave any thought to its meaning, since I didn’t even know what it meant. However, now in my ripe old age, I want to affirm that, indeed, THE WORLD’S GOING TO HELL IN A HANDBASKET! My father-in-law, who most commonly observed this, would roll over in his grave at the latest news this morning: Campbell’s Potato Soup is being recalled (are all of you sick to death over the word “recall”?) Now, it’s not that Campbell’s Potato Soup has killed anyone, but it MIGHT if someone choked on the potatoes. Therefore all the grocery stores will be bereft of the soup. Now, having never eaten the soup I can’t testify as to anything about it, except that it has a right to be there! Oh, this whole conspiracy started out so slowly. First, it was a few Chinese offenders that had been on the shelves for probably a hundred years…yanked! Then cribs that people put together wrong…yanked. Slingshots…yanked! Non-plastic toys…yanked! School yard merry-go-rounds, teeter totters, wooden seated swings…yanked! Hot coffee…yanked!
Every day I hear of more and more stuff being yanked away from the public. Today, I finally threw up my hands and screamed, “The world is going to hell in a hand basket!” There! That must be the final initiation into old age…the recognition that all we hold near and dear to us is being thrown into the trash barrel marked “unsafe”. It makes me wonder how all of us Waynedale kids survived through to adulthood and to useful lives considering all the perils that we had to face. Oh, how naive we were. We didn’t know that the merry-go-round could kill us if we fell off and got smacked with it. We just rolled under it and waited until the thing stopped. Oh, what a horrible thing…we learned to survive playground equipment! Since there was no plastic we had to learn to live with metal and wood. Oh, sure, there were some broken arms, and some mighty proud cuts and bruises, and mangled bikes from jumping them off the bleachers, but each and every time we survived we were proud, bragged about it to the other kids and healed. We swam in “Big Blue” and stone quarries at night!
What are kids going to brag about today? Shall we give them bagged, sterilized pabulum to eat? Shall we keep them inside all the time because the boogey man will kidnap them? Or fear that their heads will be split open like pumpkins if they don’t wear helmets on their tricycles? And Lord, don’t climb on any overlooked monkey bars. We are not making the world safe for kids. What we are doing is instilling fear, far beyond caution, suspicion far beyond reason. And worst of all “sparing” them from an ability to fend for themselves.
How in the world are today’s kids going to learn how to take care of themselves, or, indeed, save themselves from real harm, if we keep removing every hazard or potential hazard that adults can dream up? I’ve had it with these idiots! I don’t want to hear anymore! The Campbells’ Soup recall is the final straw!
Could we, perhaps, maybe let kids think for themselves, and teach them things like the Heimlich Maneuver, and survival skills? Could we quit putting them in a veritable plastic bubble that we can roll them around in?
The other day I read about an older teen that drowned because he fell off a boat, and couldn’t swim. I’d like to know the story on THOSE parents. Probably never let the kid in water without full inflatable gear, so he could be “safe.” Don’t let the kid learn to fend for himself! So…the kid grows up unprepared for life and drowns the first time he is in water without watchful parents and inflatable gear! I want to open the upstairs window and scream, “HAS THE WORLD GONE NUTS?” But instead, I sit at my computer and warn you that the world is going to hell in a hand basket.