Watching Camera Girl and Princess Sack of Potatoes sitting side by side, each with a piece of paper and sharing a big box of old crayons was inspirational. In our age where belief in everything has evaporated and where learning has degenerated into a kindergarten struggle session over sexual identity, I’m watching creativity and learning leap frogging a generation and dispensing with computers, tablets, phones and all the other modern clap trap of the hive mind.
The little girl is recovering from a bad cold so she’s not quite as frenetic as she usually is, so sitting still to color for an extended period is a little easier. But the grandmother still has to expend a considerable amount of skill to keep the activity going. Discussions about the different colors and their varying subjective value for representing a dog or a tree or a car are conducted. And plans are made for where and how these masterpieces will be displayed on the refrigerator and what older treasures can now be stored for posterity in the Art Repository (attic). Learning to draw circles and triangles, squares and stars is mixed in with printing the letters of the alphabet and the numbers from one to a hundred. All the ancient knowledge is available through a grandmother’s gentle teaching methods.
Eventually art period will end. Creativity will yield to less cerebral pursuits. Camera Girl will bring out the blocks or a story book or move the operation to the kitchen where making pizza dough or baking a cake will take center stage. But what I can see is that the crumbling of our society is an unforced disaster. We are abandoning our children’s minds to terrible people who have no ability or intention to teach useful skills. That little girl, barely three years old, will soon have the basic skills of reading, writing and arithmetic that fifth graders in some inner-city schools will lack at age eleven or even older. And it has nothing to do with intelligence. In the nineteenth century even the slowest children were proficient in writing and arithmetic by eighth grade. That was all the schooling they ever received. But they were competent to participate in civil life. They could make change for a sale and correspond with their distant relatives in grammatical and expressive English. Based on the comments I’ve seen displayed on Twitter and “TikTok” that is a long dead situation.
But this is an entirely voluntary mental death that is happening. We don’t have to participate in this societal suicide. Those of us who care can send our children to good schools or if necessary, home school them. It’s a hackneyed phrase to say that “children are our most precious possession.” But that doesn’t make it any less true. Ultimately, they will be all that will remain of us.
So, anyway, that’s what I have to say. I had no stomach to talk about Biden today. I needed something positive to think and talk about and I received inspiration by seeing that small human doing something creative and positive. Some good was done here today and more will be done tomorrow and the day after. Hopefully by the time my grandchildren are grown we will have rejected much of the madness currently wreaking havoc in our world. We must fix this world for our children or there won’t be a world left. Start small, start local and do something positive.