Friday, June 20, 2008

Same Song, Different Verse

I tried. I really tried. I really wanted to be "Cool Mom" and let the kids listen to the pop music on the radio. And I even conceded with the really awful songs, so long as they sang different lyrics.

I don't know what the straw was that finally broke the camel's back: Was it the blatant sexual lyrics blaring out of my speakers? Or perhaps the fact that the bass made the whole car thump? Or the screeching, screaming singers who apparently tried to see how many notes they could hit in sixty seconds?

Whatever it was, I cracked. I slapped the off button, and declared, "THAT'S IT!"

The kids looked at me with a mixed expression that said, both, "But we thought you were cool?" and "Yeah, we knew that was coming."

We rode silently for a while. I was stewing over the fact that such filth was on public airwaves. Finally, my son said, "So... Now what?"

Good question.

Off to the Christian book store we went. We found some Toby Mac cd's. The kids put them into the cd player, and turned it up LOUD.

If you didn't listen to the words, it sounded just like what I had just snapped off. But if you listened to the words, no one was having sex with lots of people in very public places and in very rude ways. And the kids seemed to be able to enjoy Toby Mac almost as much as the junk.

Later that day, I was still struggling with the whole thing. I was a hypocrite for liking the music I insisted my children not listen to. I wanted to be "Cool Mom" but I just could not abide by my children filling their minds with such junk. These very songs that I love dancing to were making me blush like crazy in front of my kids.

When I was in my twenties I loved the way the music played like a sound track to my life. I felt cool and hip watching the prime time shows. The magazines on the sales racks next to the check out counter had fun quizzes and cute outfits.

It never even occurred to me that any of those things would be so offensive to me as a parent. And yet, they are. And the irony of of it all is that all of those things that felt so freeing in my twenties, now were actually very confining.

I can't take my children anywhere without the TV, magazines, radio, internet, books, and just about everything else spouting out smut. Does that statement make me a prude? Because I want my children to remain innocent as long as possible?

I agree with free speech- so long as it doesn't impede upon some else's rights. I wouldn't begin to know how to set up the rules for "children friendly" verses "hip, cool adult fun." But, I would love to have a "normal" TV show that we could all watch that wasn't goofy or saccharine sweet. And the radio would be so much better to listen to if the music was as catchy as the Top 40 Pop, but written to accommodate a younger audience.

So, I sound like an old woman up on a soap box... But I want my children to have a childhood. In a culture where youth is valued above all else, you would think we would go to greater lengths to protect it.

1 comment:

ThePrincessMommy said...

I know what you mean! I have been listening to lots more Disney lately! Why does "pour some sugar on me" sound so much worse now than it did 20 years ago????