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Latchkey Nation:Home Alone in America
The Star-Ledger ^ | November 14, 2004 | Mary Eberstadt

Posted on 11/14/2004 10:22:35 AM PST by Founding Father

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To: Marinefamilyx3
I was 10 years old, taking care of my 8 and 6 year siblings after school, plus cleaning the house, and cooking easy meals. Did I develop some bipolar mind disorder? Hardly, I went on to graduate with honors from high school and college and have a work ethic that few people can hope to achieve.

Parents need to stop blaming their kid's problems on everything except where it truly lies.....themselves (the parents). They're all too quick to resort to medicine or God's the school's fault. Wake up and smell the coffee parents, it's YOUR fault your kid is screwed up. Time to take some responsibility for how your children turned out and not blame it on everything else in the world to make yourself feel better at what a lousy parent you are. Maybe if parents would act like parents and not their kid's best friends and buddy, we wouldn't have half the problems that we do in our schools today.

Good for you! Today's kids are too pampered. We have bears in our neighborhood. One day recently a bear knocked over a neighbor's garbage can and dragged the garbage into our yard. Havnign cleaned it up several times in the past myself and being tired of it, I went next door and asked the mom if she could send over one of her boys -- ages 12 and 14 -- to clean it up. Her response was that she could ask, but that the boys wouldn't do it. I was amazed!

When my kids get home from school, they know they have their priorities: (1)homework, (2)chores, (3)goofing off. Each day they have a couple chores that we list for them: emptying the dishwasher, taking the garbage cans out front for trash day, cleaning the cat litter box, etc. It takes work to teach kids values and responsibility. Most parents don't want to put forth the effort to do it.

51 posted on 11/14/2004 1:04:33 PM PST by ContraryMary
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To: Recovering Ex-hippie

My kids grew up witha parent working nights (mom) and a parent working days (me). She got them off to school and I was there right after the came home. They knew that the old man would be there and there was no chance for shennanigans. It worked well till they got freedom and then it all went to hell in a handbasket!

52 posted on 11/14/2004 1:13:54 PM PST by Chieftain (Thank you Swift Boat Veterans/POWs/Vietnam Veterans for Truth - you did it for ALL your brothers!)
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To: Lance Romance
...turn off the MTV, it is the absolute worst thing for kids to be exposed to.

It's not allowed in my house.

53 posted on 11/14/2004 1:16:54 PM PST by ContraryMary
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To: rocky88
We aren't that close, needless to say. And for the record, my mom stayed home with us and baked cookies. I don't remember much about what we got for Christmas, Birthdays, or other gifts. I just remember Mom being there in the afternoon so she could read to me. I want the same for our son. :-)

Obviously, one thing that draws a family (or even friends) together is shared activities. Your sister's family is more affluent, but her children will not have the happy memories of doing things with her. Their memories will for the most part involve doing things with other people In the long run, it will be more difficult for her to form a close bond with her children. Also, she is setting a bad example of making money paramount. When she is 80 years old she shouldn't expect her children to personally look after her. Hopefully, they'll take the trouble to find her a good nursing home.

54 posted on 11/14/2004 1:19:18 PM PST by Siamese Princess
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To: annyokie
My kids know better when they get "The Look". Two ass kicking (one each) were enough to stop the madness.

It really helps a mother if she has a male authority figure in the house to back up her authority. This is true for stubborn toddlers and teenagers alike. The classic threat of "Just wait until your father gets home" is effective -- there is greater respect for male authority.

55 posted on 11/14/2004 1:26:48 PM PST by Siamese Princess
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To: Siamese Princess

Dad is a career Army officer. Mine know better than to cross either of us.

He has a scarier "Look" than mine.

56 posted on 11/14/2004 1:31:32 PM PST by annyokie (If the shoe fits, put 'em both on!)
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To: annyokie

BIG BIG difference. today the kids are innundated with societies worst. With no one home to guide them it's no wonder they are having serious emotional problems.

57 posted on 11/14/2004 1:40:40 PM PST by marty60
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To: marty60

I have kids in grade school and high school. My kids are capable of staying home unattended for many hours. They also feed the dogs, make their beds, clean their bathroom and do their homework without being nagged. They are all boys and are capable of doing a load of wash or cooking a simple meal.

They go to school with kids who live on take out and collect welfare. Not all of them, of course.

58 posted on 11/14/2004 1:50:47 PM PST by annyokie (If the shoe fits, put 'em both on!)
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To: Chieftain

You did a great job. They are wonderful kids! I was a bit (ha!) goofy in my twenties, but it all comes back to the basics of how chldren were reared when they were little. I had the basics and that's what counts. Unfortunately, today's kids don't often get a shot at that initial training and have no way to get back.

59 posted on 11/14/2004 2:26:51 PM PST by Recovering Ex-hippie (Taking vitamins to handle the MSM)
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To: shellcracker
Also, do not forget that a DIAGNOSIS of a mental disorder is not the same as the EXISTENCE of such a disorder. Many of these disorders, most notoriously attention deficit, are hopelessly over-diagnosed where they simply do not exist.
60 posted on 11/14/2004 2:29:51 PM PST by dufekin (Four more years! Liberals, learn: whiners are losers every time.)
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To: Marinefamilyx3

Thank you for saying it. After 18 years with three kids in the public school system, that is exactly the conclusion I came to.
I loved just about every child my children befriended, the parents were constant problems. The latest example, a parent mixed up four screw drivers and served my 15 year old daughter till she threw up. Then told her not to tell anyone, it would be her and my daughters secret. Turns out she had been doing that to high school kids for 5 years and the superintendent and principal had known about it for years.
Thank God there is no more public school system for my kids. Now I have to deal with University of Oregon, but no parents!!!!!!!

61 posted on 11/14/2004 2:48:42 PM PST by thirst4truth
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To: Founding Father

I would wager at least 25% percent of these children are probably feeling the effects of their busy activity schedules. Answer for parents: cut back on some activities and relax with your children.

62 posted on 11/14/2004 2:55:42 PM PST by Baby Bear (Conserve and grow your money...gain power in return.)
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To: Recovering Ex-hippie

My older brother, sister and I were all 'Latch Key Kids" before the term was ever invented. Mom and Dad both worked. So we kids has lots to keep ourselves occupied. Homework. Chores. A huge back yard with trees to climb later in the day. After a dinner we all sat down to every night.

The telephone and television were off-limits until after Mom and Dady got home. We'd watch the news during dinner (Which started my life-long dispisal of Walter Cronkite) and maybe an hour later in the evening.

That was in the 1960s, so I'd imagine some kids were kinda F-ed Up in the 70s, 80. and 90s. F-ed Up, ignored kids grow up to "manage", not "raise" F-ed Up, ignored kids.


63 posted on 11/14/2004 2:58:17 PM PST by Jack Deth (When In Doubt.... Empty The Magazine!)
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To: Founding Father
Your premise is completely incorrect. The constitution is a contract between states to cede certain enumerated powers to a central government. Any powers not expressly ceded are reserved to the states. There is no such concept as "extra-constitutional." I suggest you read the constitution and look particularly at the 9th and 10th amendments. What the heck---pay particular attention to the entire document. You are 180 degrees off.

You are completely wrong. You don't understand the USC, and how it has come to be interpreted over 200 years.

The fact that, for example, the USC does not specifically mandate a department of education does not make the formation of a department of education 'unconstitutional.' The fact that the USC doesn't specifically mandate the creation of the Fed doesn't mean that a national bank is somehow 'unconstitutional.'

Those things, and any others within a wide range of conduct, may be wise or unwise, and may be elective courses of action we as a society choose to take or not to take - those are policy decisions. But they don't make any of that stuff 'unconstitutional.'

It;s your kind of overstatements that harm the cause, and not help it. If you can't (or won't) accept that, you have bigger problems than I can address here.

I have a law degree and have been admitted to the NY Bar for 10 years. If you like to think you are an authority on constitutional law, enjoy yourself. Maybe even file suit to bring an end to all these 'unconstitutional' roles our government has elected to take. Good luck - you are going to need it, son.

64 posted on 11/14/2004 7:11:57 PM PST by HitmanLV (I will not be pushed, filed, stamped, indexed, briefed, debriefed or numbered. My life is my own.)
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To: HitmanNY

First, I am not your son. Second, you obviously have not read any Supreme Court decisions prior to the mid 1930s. Third, being from New York I can understand why you know nothing about the constitution.Finally, because the necessary and proper clause, not to mention the commerce clause, have been misinterpreted by recent courts, doesn't mean the post 1930s interpretation is correct.

I could care less that you're admitted to a bar. Let me know when you've been admitted to the USSC bar---and argued a case before it. We'll compare notes.

65 posted on 11/14/2004 8:11:24 PM PST by Founding Father
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To: annyokie

Way to go. they'll make great husbands too. Good Job

66 posted on 11/15/2004 4:35:27 AM PST by marty60
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To: shellcracker

I don't think many are buying that.

We have tons of psychotropic drugs which will only continue to be produced if the manufacturers get rich from them.

The need to 'invent' new mental disorders is greater now than it ever was and it is fueled by the pharmaceutical companies.

A lot of these issues have underlying spiritual problems but since we aren't supposed to talk about God in the Grand and All Wise Government School System many kids will never learn there is an alternative method for dealing with your problems.

Surely you aren't honestly convinced that depriving kids of the family time which they need to thrive is not affecting them in major ways.

67 posted on 11/15/2004 4:54:30 AM PST by tutstar ( <{{--->< Violations of Florida Statutes ongoing!)
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To: Mears

Yes but back then if you got out of line there were likely neighbors who would call it to yours and your mom's attention. I'm not a 'Village theory' believer aka Hillary's Village Socialism. The moral fabric of the US then was so opposite to what it is now. Kids home alone with no supervision viewing violent tv, tv which disrespects authority figures, internet porn, and who knows what else is having an effect which emotionally immature and/or unstable children are unable to cope with.

68 posted on 11/15/2004 4:58:26 AM PST by tutstar ( <{{--->< Violations of Florida Statutes ongoing!)
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To: Founding Father

You are colossaly wrong if you think that stuff like a department of education is somehow 'unconstitutional.'

I agree with you regarding the necessary and proper clause and the commerce clause, but that's not to say that the US Goverment is somehow automatically acting 'unconstitutionally' when they act beyond the mandate set by the USC.

It's you who clearly don't 'get it,' and I don't doubt that you are unwilling (or unable) to recognize the clear difference between acting contrary to the rules in the USC, and acting outside of them.

If you insist on clinging to 80 year old outdated precedent, well, that speaks volumes for you, I suppose. If you have any legal clients, I hope you let them know that you personally and willingly honor bad law. I am sure they would love to hear that one!

69 posted on 11/15/2004 10:02:05 AM PST by HitmanLV (I will not be pushed, filed, stamped, indexed, briefed, debriefed or numbered. My life is my own.)
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To: Founding Father

This article puts autism in this group, and how does

"unconstitutional programs resulting in greatly higher taxes, causing both parents to work to make ends meet (don't forget the women's lib mantra that you must abandon the kiddos and work for your life to have any meaning)"

cause autism??????

70 posted on 11/15/2004 10:04:07 AM PST by luckystarmom
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To: Freedom'sWorthIt

It is very hard to get a diagnosis of a problem for your child.

My daughter has severe speech problems and some other issues. She would qualify for much help except that we finally got an MRI for her. The MRI showed significant brain damage, so she nows qualifies for lots of help.

Unfortunately, I would much rather have a normal child than a child with significant brain damage.

71 posted on 11/15/2004 10:06:41 AM PST by luckystarmom
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To: marty60

marty60 wrote, " not leave your children to be raised in their formative years by a stranger..."

marty60 should enjoy the "Daycares Don't Care" website.
It has a similar viewpoint to Eberstadt's 'Home-Alone America', and consists of a large collection of information about the problems with day care.

The URL is:

72 posted on 12/24/2004 6:10:57 AM PST by JaredS
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