What is this world coming to? I’m eye-rolling all over the place today thinking about the explanation my husband got at our kid’s school carnival yesterday when he inquired about the missing inflatable slides and bounce houses and the ever popular 5th-grade dunk tank. He was told, according to one teacher, that the district has now banned inflatables and dunk tanks from being on school property. They feel it is too much of a liability. These inflatables and dunk tanks have been a long-standing tradition at the carnival, and my kids certainly felt their absence. I would love to see the actual statistics that tell us just how many children have been injured in the history of the carnival, and I am frustrated as I think about what frivolous lawsuits and lawyers have done to our children.
In our world today, there are no more seesaws in public parks and schools, no diving boards at pools, and most recently, I read an article that the town of Paxton, IL banned sledding down a popular hill in a public park stating that the sledding is “too risky.” Now I am hearing about our school district’s ban on inflatables and dunk tanks. Where do we draw the line? When do we say “enough” and realize that we may be jeopardizing our children’s ability to grow?
Not too long ago, my family and I were at a park in Sedona, AZ, and my son followed two boys’ lead climbing over a fence. My natural instinct was to run and grab him, but my husband held me back. ”Let him go. Boys climb fences. Don’t get involved.” Guess what? He climbed the fence and was fine. He was also so proud of his accomplishment. It was a good lesson for me, and I am thinking of it as I am shaking my head at our school district.
I beg and plead….let our kids grow. Let them have fun doing what kids love to do. Stop worrying so much, and when you take away a privilege because of “liability,” realize that you really are taking away so much more. What a sad world we live in if we succumb to these silly demands put on us by lawyers and lawsuits.
My song of the day is Cat Steven’s “Where Do the Children Play,” because in the song, he discusses how the development of the world takes away places for children to play. It’s perfect for this blog post, so click HERE to go to Youtube to listen to these words that speak to me today. We cannot forget to allow for opportunities for our children to play as they are supposed to. Our society really needs to do something about this.