Friday, January 25, 2008
As I walked up to the school to pick the younger kids up the other day, I passed a mom pushing a stroller, and holding the leash of a medium sized dog. She was walking this dog right past the "No dogs" sign, and all the while laughing with her friend about getting yelled at by the principal for parking in the fire lane. I left to go pick up E.J. at his school... it was around 4pm, and as I drove past the driveway that says "No entrance between 3:30 and 5:30PM" I watched a car pull right in. I went the way I was directed and pulled into the line of cars waiting for their sons. Another car pulled right past the line and pulled over ahead of it, to get their own child. Stopping at the store later on, I watched a young (20 something?) guy in a pickup truck pull into a 'cars with babies' spot, and hop out, no car seat visible in his truck.
When you're raising kids, it's so hard to teach them all the rules of society, all the 'rights and wrongs'. It makes it so much harder when every day they see people blatantly ignoring the rules. The other day, Pipo saw a "no littering" sign, and asked if the police would really make you pay a fine. I told him they would if they saw him littering, but that even if no one was watching you shouldn't litter. He said "yeah, because I wouldn't want to pay a fine." I stopped and thought about this for a minute. Then I started a discussion with all the kids on why we shouldn't litter... and why we follow rules. We don't follow these rules because we don't want to pay the fine... we follow them because it's the right thing to do. It's not so much that the littering is illegal, it's just plain wrong.
It's so frustrating to try and teach our kids these lessons every day, and every day they see adults just ignoring the signs, ignoring the rules. This parenting stuff... it's an uphill battle.