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Are We Raising a Generation of Wimps?

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#1 of 130 OFFLINE   WillG



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Posted January 25 2006 - 02:21 AM

I have been listening to Opie and Anthony on XM this morning and they have been in a long discussion about (in mainly sports) about limiting peoples performance to make everyone seem equal and to eliminate competition and to lessen the concept of "Winners and Losers." Some of the examples that people have called in with included not keeping score in sporting competitions and having manditory benching of players that excel after they reach a certain amount of points. One of the problems of this is that it creates false hopes for people who are just not athletically gifted. There was also mention of schools that allow students to have unlimited retakes of exams until they can eeke out a passing grade because the school is not allowed to give out Fs. Are we raising a generation of wimps by discouraging competition and trying to make everyone "equal" and encouraging "no losers" mentality. Opie made a comment where he said about the younger generations "Good luck dealing with China" Which actually seemed a bit chilling to me. Maybe things are being exaggerated a bit, but it does make me think Does anyone here have any examples they have seen of dumbing down competition and/or trying to unnaturally "equalize" people who just, as a fact of life, have different talents and abilities?
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#2 of 130 OFFLINE   JonZ


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Posted January 25 2006 - 03:09 AM

"Are we raising a generation of wimps" Yes and its been happening for a long time. When did we become a country of whiners?

#3 of 130 OFFLINE   Mark Sherman

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Posted January 25 2006 - 03:19 AM


This made my Blood BOIL when I read It.
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#4 of 130 OFFLINE   Steve Ridges

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Posted January 25 2006 - 03:26 AM

Unbelieveable Mark. Whats the matter with people??

#5 of 130 OFFLINE   JonZ


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Posted January 25 2006 - 03:27 AM

Note: I did not write this, it was sent to me from someone at work in a email. It just seemed to fit with the thread so I copied and pasted it here. "To all the people who survied the 30's, 40's, 50's, 60's and 70's! First, we survived being born to mothers who smoke and/or drank while they carried us. They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing and didn't get tested for diabetes. Then after that trauma, our baby cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paints. We had no childproof lids 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 air bags. Riding in the back of a pick up on a warm day was always a special treat. We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle. We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and no one actually died from this. We ate cupcakes, bread and butter and drank soda pop with sugar in it, but we weren't overweight because we were always outside playing! We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on. No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K. We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride 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, Nintendo's, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 99 channels on cable, no video tape movies, no surround sound, no cell phones, no personal computers, no Internet or Internet chat rooms.......... we had friends and we went outside and found them. We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents. We made up games with sticks and tennis balls and ate worms and although we were told what would happen, we did not put out very many eyes, nor did the worms live in us forever. We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house 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. Imagine that! The idea of a parent bailing us out of Jail if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law! This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever! The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas. We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all. And YOU are one of them. C O N G R A T U L A T I O N S! Wasn't it great to grow up as kids before the lawyers and the government regulated our lives for our own good. Kind of makes you want to run through the house with scissors, doesn't it? "

#6 of 130 OFFLINE   Mark Sherman

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Posted January 25 2006 - 03:31 AM

I remeber growing up and going out to PLAY. My friends and I would come home covered in mud, with scrathes, bumps and Bruises and we had FUN. I have no Idea whats the matter with people. And the way kids act in Public is Just out of friggen control.
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#7 of 130 OFFLINE   danDo



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Posted January 25 2006 - 03:36 AM

Watching parents who grew up in a 'protected environment' raise monsters instead of kids is bad enough, I don't want to see what the next generation will be like.

#8 of 130 OFFLINE   Mark Sherman

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Posted January 25 2006 - 03:45 AM

JONZ I remember about 90% of what you listed. My old neighborhood had all these old trails and paths that went out for miles with swamps,hills, pine groves it was a mini eco system surrounding my house. We would go out for Hours and hours riding everywhere in those trails without ever seeing a car or anybody else for that matter. We would play WAR in the pinegrove, look for pollywogs frogs and snakes in the swamp and make Jumps for our Bikes at the bottom of the hill for some serious AIR. Saturdays after soccer were the best. Oh and Speaking of soccer. I had to try out for the team and we did infact have winners and losers.
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#9 of 130 OFFLINE   Linda Thompson

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Posted January 25 2006 - 03:48 AM

My very first broken bone happened when I was about 8 years old...3rd day of summer vacation...playing King Of The Hill with my two male cousins and all the other neighborhood boys. (I was the only female in my crowd, so I was, of necessity, guite a tomboy.) My older cousin de-throned me and was immediately de-throned himself, at which point he accidentally rolled over top of me and broke my collar bone. It was a really fun summer vacation with the arm-straight-out cast, but I survived it. I also continued to play King Of The Hill...and everything else...after I healed. Wouldn't trade all of that for ANYTHING.

My very first tetanus shot was necessitated by my stepping on a rusty nail in the stable. It entered the bottom of my foot and came out the top. Ouch. But I survived, and I continued to ride, to care for my horse, and...believe it or not...I actually learned...the HARD way...to WEAR FREAKIN' SHOES IN THE STABLE like my parents had always told me.

We made mistakes, and we had accidents. We also survived them and learned from them. I pity today's kids who aren't allowed those opportunities.

But...full disclosure...I am NOT a parent. My feelings might change if I were...but I would hope not.

#10 of 130 OFFLINE   Chu Gai

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Posted January 25 2006 - 03:50 AM

Some of the schools have programs where 'close enough' answers in math are deemed correct. There was also a school that was recently in the news (Florida?) where they refused to have a valedictorian citing the reason that the race was just too close between two very talented students.

#11 of 130 OFFLINE   Chris Lockwood

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Posted January 25 2006 - 04:22 AM

> There was also a school that was recently in the news (Florida?) If it's the same one I heard about, it's more like they decided it "wasn't fair" to just award one student out of hundreds, not that 2 happened to be very close.

#12 of 130 OFFLINE   JonZ


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Posted January 25 2006 - 04:30 AM

I should note I didnt write that,which is why I put it in quotes. I received it from someone thru email at work. It just seemed to fit with the threadPosted Image

#13 of 130 OFFLINE   Linda Thompson

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Posted January 25 2006 - 04:30 AM


I graduated as Salutatorian of my class, with my best friend as Valedictorian. We maintained a very healthy, friendly and rewarding competition leading up to the honors, and the lead position kept flip-flopping, separated by fractions of a point, as noted in the news item linked above. When the final bell rang, she was about a tenth of a point ahead, and I was thrilled for her. She worked hard for it (as did I), and she deserved it...as I would have if things had gone the other way. And, she would have been just as happy for me as I was for her. Posted Image

#14 of 130 OFFLINE   Christ Reynolds

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Posted January 25 2006 - 04:32 AM

i remember when i was in 5th grade (about 1988), we went to a school that was built in 1900 or so. one day that year, we did "1900 day" or whatever the year was. the teachers dressed up like they were in 1900, and the willing students did the same, although it was not required. during the course of the day, we acted as if it was 1900, as a little exercise in history, and to see how things may have been different 90 years ago. the teacher told us to read a poem, and selected 3 boys to read aloud. when a girl asked why she wasnt picking any girls, the teacher said "because boys are smarter than girls." at 10 years old, we got it. we knew she didnt actually THINK that, but that's how it probably was back then. the troublemaker in class threw a few papers out the window, so he was put in the closet for 5 minutes. another kid did something else, and he was made to stand in the corner with a dunce cap on. we understood that this was all for show, even if the kids were being punished a little. the school didnt get any calls from angry parents, no crying kids. i wonder how many lawsuits would occur now.
now that scares me more than anything. i think not only are we raising a generation of wimps, but there is very little respect for figures of authority. my girlfriend is a language teacher at one of the public high schools in town. even though she's been a full time teacher for 5 years, she's one of the younger ones at 27. she looks like kristin davis from sex and the city, so naturally, a lot of the students like the way she looks. now, when i was in high school, only about 10 years ago, we had hot teachers, straight from college, but i'd never think of actually asking one out. but these kids are different. she gets asked out just about every week. and not as a goof in the middle of class to make friends laugh, these kids come up to her after class and ask her out. i find it funny...but wtf! she also gets accused of being racist about 3 times a week. the school's population is about 5-10% black, i'd guess, pretty small number. she has a class with 3 or 4 black boys, all of which are extreme behavior problems. EVERY TIME she tells them to be quiet or sit down, they say "why dont you tell the white kids to sit down, it's because you're racist!" and they go on and on, completely disrupting the class. she had one of their parents accuse her, too. the administration held a parent-teacher meeting and went through all the formalities, but they eventually laughed the parent off. normally, when a child acts up in her class, she calls home (one of the few teachers she knows who still does this), and attempts to get a parent on the phone. when she can, the parent usually tries to figure out what she (my girlfriend) is doing wrong, instead of the child. the parent is almost always on the side of the child, and this is extremely scary to me. i had a teacher call home when i was a kid, and if i typed what happened to me, my parents would probably be back-sued for child abuse somehow. but guess what? that was the first and last time a teacher ever had to call MY house. CJ
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#15 of 130 OFFLINE   Stephen Orr

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Posted January 25 2006 - 04:33 AM

I just read the article about the Mesa Valley schools that prohibit running! I work at an elementary school in Virginia Beach. Not only does our school have a running club for 4th and 5th graders, every Wednesday is devoted to lap running at all grade levels! We have kids who will be recognized for their cumulative distance for the year. We have a running and fitness nut for a principal, and she believes in kids getting their exercise on her watch. There's also a volleyball club during the first 3 months of school.

#16 of 130 OFFLINE   Mark Sherman

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Posted January 25 2006 - 04:38 AM

Tell that to the Down Hill Skier,the Bobsled team or the speed skater who worked thier whole life to compete and was beaten out for the gold by a hundrenth of a second. Winning is winning.
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#17 of 130 OFFLINE   MikeH1



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Posted January 25 2006 - 04:40 AM

Well said JonZ.

I grew up on the west coast on Vancouver Island for some years and I have to say its a kids paradise. I built tree forts high up in the massive trees, built trails in the temperate rainforest with bridges included over little ravines, dammed foul creeks, played ball tag with a tennis ball, crashed my bike while riding on winding trails or on massive hills, fell out of trees, got nailed in the face by snowballs (this was a real treat since it rarely snowed), played "stick wars" with friends, played dodgeball getting the ball in the chops, broke my collerbone skateboarding, broke it again 2 months later on a Honda 75 ATV trike, played tag in a recreation center and fell down some stairs twisting my ankle and fell off the monkey bars breaking my arm. The list goes on...

If it means I couldn't have enjoyed all of these things today because of the risks involved then I could honestly say I would be robbed of the magic of my youth.

Perhaps I could hold someone responsible for that Posted Image

#18 of 130 OFFLINE   Scott Merryfield

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Posted January 25 2006 - 04:43 AM

Great post, Jonz. I grew up in the '60's/'70's, and pretty much all those points applied to my childhood -- except for parents having to bail me out of jail. Fortunately, I never had to experience that problem. Posted Image

#19 of 130 OFFLINE   Brook K

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Posted January 25 2006 - 04:53 AM

I don't know where these things are happening but I've attended some pretty cut-throat 5 year old girls t-ball games.

You can go too far by introducing competition early. Kids develop at different rates and the kid that wasn't good enough and didn't make the team at 7 may quit playing, when if they had stuck with the sport, they might be outstanding by age 11. We should be encouraging participation, not discouraging it. "Little League" baseball does a good job of this with their mandated participation rules and they certainly keep score beyond the lowest level.

I was a coach on my 4 year old son's team last year in a developmental league that didn't keep score. The kids are still into it as a competition and want to score and "win". They pick up on this stuff from us very quickly. When I have a game on the TV and he comes in the room the first things he wants to know is who's playing, who's winning, and who I want to win.

People overanalyze this stuff. Kid's are fine. You're welcome to come over and wash my daughter's mud-stained pants if you need proof. Posted Image
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#20 of 130 OFFLINE   Garrett Lundy

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Posted January 25 2006 - 05:08 AM

I remember in middleschool I got into a fistfight. A knock-down drag-out fight. We both got bloody noses, scars on our knuckles, and I still have a chipped tooth from that one! (bottom row, front left)! We were also best friends and I really can't recall what the fight was about. The point is after five minutes a teacher pulled us apart and gave us tissues to stuff up our noses. And then told "Knock off the horseplay". Appearantly getting the shit beat out of you was worse than "time out". Now if call someone an asshole in school you'll get suspended. Get in a fistfight? expelled. use a racist slur (and everyone did when I was in highschool.... we even had really good ones that nobody uses anymore) and they call the cops! Its a hate crime!!!!! Yes, we have forced our children into becoming pussies. They are drilled to run and tell a teacher anything that happens, and are usually punished along with the guilty. We have removed childrens & teens ability to self-govern (as barbaric as it was, its a necessary social order) May God help us all.
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