Daron's Soap Box: Raising Boys with Values and Ideals
RAISING BOYS WITH VALUES AND IDEALS
30 Jan, 2015
Violence, degradation and the objectification of women is never right whether it is in reality or through a realistic video screen! There has recently been a strong debate emerge regarding the rights and realities of entertainment in our society and in particular the impact that Grand Theft Auto 5 and other violent/sexualised games has on our children and especially our young men. Parents face an ever increasingly toxic society when it comes to raising decent men who respect women rather than degrade them. It used to be that the home was a sanctuary where our children could be protected, raised and grounded in strong wholesome family values but the tsunami of technology means that the enemy has undermined the very walls of our homes. Now through the use of Wi-fi our children can play games and google images that is ever only three clicks away! I mean, I have a problem when the game actively promotes (now in first person mode) the idea of going out and picking up a prostitute, raping her and then killing her. Let alone the rest of the strong violence that the game promotes. The interesting thing is that many of the very ones who say that these games have no effect on their reality are the ones now threatening all sorts of violence including rape/murder and burning on the group of women and men who choose to stand up, speak out, draw a line in the sand and say enough is enough. Bit ironic isn't it? For the past dozen or so years the violence, the raunch and the sexualised culture has been ramped up in video games. As technology has increased so has the clarity and realness of these games, along with its impact. Now you are not just watching the violence but you are in reality perpetrating the violence. This in my opinion has now reached a tipping point where families are standing up and are saying enough is enough. We as a society offer conflicting narratives; we tell our young people to walk away from a fight at the pub and we tell them to treat women with respect. The recently introduced once punch laws is testimony to that along with the advertising campaign. But at the same time, we see sexually aggressive video games and music lyrics that promote a culture of violence. It seems at times that technology is allowed to preach a more powerful narrative than us as parents and mentors. The old saying "As a man thinks, so is he" is very true in this situation and yes, very strong and credible peer reviewed research is in to clearly demonstrate the link between violent video games and reality! Do you as parents know what your children are playing? Do you know what they are googling? Do you know what they are filling their minds with each week during the 40 hours that the average Australian child spends in front of a screen? Has our busyness got in the way of parenting? It is almost like we as parents have abdicated our duty and thrown our hands in the air on this one. Domestic violence is increasing rather than decreasing and yet no one really seems to be interested or actively taking a stand! Near where I live in the Newcastle Hunter region, A DOMESTIC ASSAULT is reported every three hours and an abused woman will return to her violent partner an average of seven times before she leaves him. Incidents of domestic violence in the Hunter have increased nearly 20 per cent over the past three years and up to six out of every 10 calls requiring police assistance are domestic violence related. Across Australia, one woman will die every week at the hands of a current or former partner. IT IS TIME TO DRAW A LINE IN THE SAND! IT IS TIME TO CHANGE THE GAME AND BEGIN TO COLLECTIVELY RAISE AND MENTOR OUR YOUNG MEN AND TO INSTIL IN THEM DECENT VALUES AND IDEALS THAT ARE WHOLESOME AND GOOD! IT IS TIME TO SHOW THEM THAT WOMEN ARE NOT TO BE OBJECTIFIED BUT ARE REAL PEOPLE WITH REAL EMOTIONS AND FEELINGS. IT IS TIME FOR REAL MEN TO STAND UP AND SHOW OUR YOUNG MEN HOW TO TREAT WOMEN WITH REPECT AND DECENCY. IT IS TIME TO ACTIVELY RAISE AND MENTOR OUR BOYS FOR A BETTER TOMORROW! WHERE HAVE THE REAL MEN GONE? WHERE HAS THE VILLAGE GONE? WHERE HAVE THE MENTORS GONE? WHERE HAVE THE AUTHORITATIVE COMMUNITIES GONE? In all of this we need to remember that we as individuals and a collective community control the off switch and therein lies the problem! Daron gets off his soapbox and mumbling wanders on into the busy street.