26 October 1999

Oy vey!
Sometimes you just can’t win. I’ve been fighting with my webspace provider. They said I had too much stuff, so I paid for more space, they still haven’t updated the server security files so I can’t use the extra space. I had to take a bunch of pictures off line just so I can do regular updates… but I digress.
Now on to the .plan… Halloween… Halloween and stupid parents.
In a town near where I live they town council, PTA, and others are getting together to vote… nothing important, just voting if Halloween should be celebrated, in other words Trick-or-Treating, on Saturday since the real Halloween is on Sunday.
What a bunch of stupid garbage to be wasting time voting on. What’s next?? Voting to hold the 4th of July on the 6th because the 4th is on a Wednesday?? Voting to move New Year’s Eve to December 29th because it’s a Friday, not a Sunday, and that way people can get drunk and party and not worry about missing work??
It’s a holiday. Holidays are on a certain day of the year for a reason, and they should stay there.
It hasn’t always been this way. When I was a child, it could be Sunday night, pitch black, raining, and cold, and my parents would still let us dress up and go out into the dark with our bags to fill with candy. Why can’t parents today be reasonable? Their parents let them go out, so why can’t their kids go out?
Let me dispell a myth or two about the world that causes alot of parents to be bad parents:
1. There are no more psychos, murderers, rapists, kidnappers, and the like then there were when you were growing up. It only looks that way because the story about that kid who gets picked up in a van and never comes home again in Podunk, Idaho used to stay in Podunk, Idaho, or only came to the rest of the world as an Urban Legend, only now, thanks to the wonders of Cable TV and stuff like the Internet, you get to see the local news casts and read local news when you don’t even live there. In fact, in all honesty, the world is probably a little bit safer these days (with the exception of areas that have gang problems) then when you were growing up. Its okay to let your kid ride off on a bike without training wheels and not wearing his helmet, kneepads, elbowpads, and bulletproof vest with some of the other neighborhood kids, because in all likelihood, he’s going to come home just fine. There is being protective of your kid, and then there is the point where YOU become the psycho.
2. You don’t HAVE to be a two income household. There are many families that get by on one income. Being a parent brings with it a certain amount of sacrifice. Not just what you would give to save your child, but what you will give to have your child. Get a station wagon and give up the Lexus, or just go so far as to own one car instead of two. Shop in bulk. Get Levi’s instead of those Versace orginal denim pants. Clip coupons. Eat out less. One of you see them off to school, and one of you be home when they come back (take turns or one of you do both). If you find that you really do NEED a second income, find something you can do from home. My mother sorted coupons for a company when they came back redeemed, somtimes she worked at the office, but when needed, she brought home a box of coupons and sorted them at home (and even used them for discipline, “You stop hitting your brother or you’ll have to help sort coupons!”). Have that one less working person means that you can actually spend time with your child. And if you do that, the chances that they get a shotgun and some pipe bombs and go blow up their school will go way way WAY down. Guaranteed.
In this country people have a tendancy to blame everything but themselves for their mistakes. If you don’t own your mistakes, they will own you. TV, movies, books, music… these things have never caused a kid to do anything violent or stupid, only 2 things have ever cause a kid to be stupid… a) he’s a kid and its how kids learn, make mistakes, take responsibility, and learn from them, or b) bad parenting. But bad parenting is something that is a personal demon. It belongs to one person, and no one likes to admit they were wrong (entire bookstore sections, and a dozen TV shows are based on people avoiding problems). People in a large group, especially the media and society as a whole, never want to point a finger at the parents and say, “You didn’t play with your kids, so they killed 20 people.” People in large groups are easily swayed. For some reason, a group of the smartest people on the planet will still listen and probably accept as true what the most stupid person among them has to say.
Parents… and Parents-to-be… wake up… wake up and raise your children. Good parents… bad parents… any parents are better than no parents at all.
…and Halloween is on October 31st. Deal with it.

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