Do they know?

You know, but do they know?They… the students who recently walked out of school to protest the war in Iraq. Do they really know what they are protesting against? Are they old enough to comprehend the impact on the world if we were to leave Iraq now, if we were to leave tomorrow or even if we were to have never entered Iraq? Some say many of the students just wanted to skip while at least one of the students said

[She] … joined because she wanted to draw Ferndale residents’ attention to the war.“Also it shows that youth know something and are willing to support their beliefs,” she said.blogs.bellinghamherald.com

While I feel many high schoolers are truly capable of comprehending the Iraq situation, I also feel that many more just think they can comprehend the situation and protest away.But if some can comprehend and some can’t comprehend, then where do you draw the line on who we listen to and who we don’t? Should we draw a line?? Does it matter if kids don’t really understand what they are saying? I love wondering about all these questions and I do draw a line where I won’t listen to a protester. I happen to draw the line at fifth grade.

Organizer Tovah Aviv, 9, a fourth-grader, said about 40 students were interested, but teachers said students couldn’t leave class without written parent permission.“A lot, a lot, a lot of people die in war,” said Masyn Vaillancourt, 9, another fourth-grader. “I think if more people participate in doing this, we wouldn’t have war anymore.”The Olympian

That’s it. Some fifth graders I see on TV are pretty smart. I’ll listen to a fifth grader, but no fourth graders, nor third, nix on second graders and definitely not first graders.

The youngest demonstrators stuck to voicing their concerns just outside their school. About a dozen Lincoln Elementary students, including a first-grader, held signs, chanted and sang for 30 minutes.The Olympian

Unless the first graders want to talk about Lightening McQueen or Transformers then I’m not listening to them. My first grader has trouble figuring out when to brush his teeth, how’s he going to figure out when it’s the right time to leave Iraq?My point is this: although we can draw a line on which kids to listen to and which not to listen to, we should all listen to the messages of those who are feeding the messages to the kids and their parents.

The march was organized by local members of Youth Against War and Racism, a student-led group founded by Socialist Alternative, an organization that opposes “the global capitalist system.”KNDO/KNDU

I know, I know, there goes Wally talking socialist conspiracy. I’ll shut my yap and let them speak for themselves.

We campaign for the building of a mass workers’ party to represent the interests of workers, youth, and the environment against the two parties of big business.We see the global capitalist system as the root cause of terrorism, war, poverty, discrimination, and environmental destruction. As capitalism moves deeper into crisis and recession, a new generation of workers and youth must join together to take the top 500 corporations into public ownership.http://socialistalternative.org/

There you go. It’s all about preserving America.

9 thoughts on “Do they know?

  1. It’s funny that you would mention the refined bit.

    She has been off refined sugar her entire life. We usually make all our breads in the home, or purchase them from local bakeries that use orgain unrefined flour.

    We also pretty much make everything from “scratch” in our house… if we don’t grow it in the yard.

  2. Sounds like you didn’t get the humor of the 4th and 5th grade split. There’s a TV show called Are You Smarter than a 5th grader. We don’t get cable or satellite so where we live it’s called Are You Smarter than a 5th Grade Canadian. Many adults apparently are not.

    And while your kid sounds pretty amazing, I’d venture that she is the exception rather than the rule. My point is the same though. If there is an organized protest, we should look at who the organizers are and what message they are sending. I can’t speak for you or your child, but I think there were a lot of people involved with this round of protesting who don’t know or understand the mission of the organizers, socialistalternative.org.

    Oh, and did I mention :) that both my boys know how to take care of their respective behinds. However my preschooler still needs a bit of practice. Ask if he has washed before you shake his hand.

    Setting differences aside, assuming you comeback to read, could I ask you a question?. Have you raised your daughter free from refined sugar? refined flour? We’ve sworn them off as well as most prepackaged food for about 6 months now. We feel great, and I assume this will only be a benefit for our boys health, but we really don’t know anyone who has raised a child this way.

  3. I am sad to hear that you have no more faith in children other than to hold them to the standards that they are being socially conditioned to live up to. You mentioned that you would not trust a young person unless they spoke of the transformers.

    How much of that movie did they really understand though? Aren’t there always larger themes inside of children’s movies and cartoons that “go over their heads” yet entertain us adults at the same time?

    Might the Iraq war do the same thing?

    My kid, the organizer at Lincoln Elementary School, doesn’t watch television. We don’t’ go to the movies, unless they are independent and showing at The Capitol. We don’t buy toys made in china, or fuzzy slippers just for the hell of it.

    She saw her first Michael Moore flick when she was four years old, and thought that he was “overdoing it” just a little bit. She thought that he could have made his point without going as far as he did. Just last year, she said she thought people might take him more seriously if he didn’t jump overboard so much with what he’s trying to get people to see.

    I think that children are just the same as adults.

    They will see what they are allowed to see.

    I think you are a conditioned adult. You think kids are dumb, so you dumb them down. As a result, your first grader is a grade A consumer… using their free speech time to talk to you about transformers, while my kid is talking about transgender issues, global healthcare, the amero, the euro, war, the idea of equal rights, racism, peace making…. alongside with chocolate chip cookie recipes, the effect of refined sugar, the downfall of American soil due to the overproduction of corn, global warming, knitting, African dance, body movement, somatic therapies, color therapy, comic making, zine making…

    Oh, and did I mention she almost always modifies her own clothes?

    She knows how to sew, cook, ride the public bus, organize a walk out at her school, speak all her prayers in Hebrew, follow Olympia headlines as well as global headlines, compost all her food waste, help grow a garden, harvest a garden and cook the food, (let alone do the dishes and put them away.)

    Let me guess..
    your first grader doesn’t even wipe his own ass yet, right?

  4. I did nothing special in Iraq, except work a lot for a lie. Maybe I am jealous of all the commercial fishermen out there who actually get to do honest and moral work. I just think that you are deluding yourself on many issues, or maybe you are just misinformed.

    I don’t look down my nose at any body these days. That stopped after I realized that most of the Iraqis I dealt with were better men than me, a good American Patriot. Ever since I have been ashamed of Americans who wrap themselves in the Aura of Good.

  5. Hi Evan, Thanks again for your service.
    I realize that my 20 years as a commercial fisherman will never add up to 60 seconds of what you did, protecting your buddies and yourself, in Iraq. But I am no means ashamed of my choices. I am proud of all the people that I was able to feed,and I terribly miss all those I knew who never made it home to their families.
    I should be bead now, and sometimes am in amazement that I am still here.
    I put in 20 years as a commercial fisherman, crabber and Prawn fisherman.
    12 to 20 hour days were quite common, and when I was in the business, you didn’t work part time but year round. Days off? Rare. Sometimes during the peak, 6 weeks with only a catnap or two every day or two was business as usual.
    You may look down your nose at me and that’s A- OK with me.
    p.s. I hope the best for your descendants, and mine as well. You may even find that I’m not in entire disagreement about Stop-Loss. I don’t agree with the draft either. I hope that you visit my webpage and comment on the Article that I wrote after you convinced my closed mind to go do some research.
    Thanks Again.

  6. PPP, your specific brand of closed-minded ignorance is the enemy of everything good in the world. You may wrap yourself in a flag, but it is only to hide your own shame and ignorance. I hope that someday you have to go to Iraq and are forced to work 15 hours a day 7 days a week with no days off for 6 months. I hope your descendants get put to work in a Maquiladore making socks for rich Chinese kids. Maybe then they will rue your viewpoints.

  7. Apparently they are a cell structure or franchise operation that is similar to many other late 20th century and early 21st century radical groups. It also appears that they may be home based in Australia. Until I’m sure on that, don’t quote me.

    Socialism is the enemy of all free men.