Oct 042010
Authors: Molly Ungerer

It baffles me that people are still having children at the rate that they are.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad that someone is up for it; I just don’t understand the high percentages of families having children. It’d be fun to name children, pick out their clothes and see the final product once they have grown up and no longer call me just to ask for money.

I just can’t believe that there are so many people who want the arduous task of raising children. And so many people, in fact, that it’s now a world problem. I’m referring to overpopulation.

This article has nothing to do with solving the issue of overpopulation. But I would like to suggest a possibility that may really save society from the havoc of adolescence.

Eighteenth century satirist Jonathan Swift suggested in his essay “A Modest Proposal” “that the impoverished Irish might ease their economic troubles by selling children as food for rich gentlemen and ladies,” to lighten the burden of children on society and parents. I don’t suggest that we eat the children that are rapidly flooding the population; I have something else in mind.

Around age 8 children start to really develop their sassy, young and illogical attitudes toward the general public. This seems to last until the adolescent reaches age 19 or 20.

What if the population were to send their children away to an all-around, life-training, 11-year camp? Once the child reaches that sassy back-talking phase, the parents will pack their child’s belongings and send him or her to camp with the other flippant hooligans. Trained professionals will operate these camps.

While away at these facilities, the children will acquire a range of life-long skills. They will be taught to wash their own dishes, hold the door for others, manage their tantrums, bite their tongue when tempted to scream and embarrass their parents in public, tell their parents when and where they’re running away to and even use their words to get a point across rather than pouting and crying. These classes will be part of the core curriculum alongside regular schooling.

When parents send their youngsters to this training, they’ll have visiting opportunities and freedom to contact their children by phone. The young residents will stay in dormitory-style structures and will be fed three times a day.

They will learn to exercise properly and keep in top physical condition to avoid obesity and severe laziness that a lot of kids suffer from. I’m sure you’ve witnessed the disorderly, irrational behavior of these children. They know who they are.

It never fails. Every time I’ve made a trip to the grocery store there is some flaming child throwing a screeching fit with his beet red face, usually sprawled all over the ground with a box of sugar-drenched cereal that his mother just told him to please place back on the shelf.

These are the children who have me cringing when I remind myself, “Do not reproduce. Putting yourself through such a wretched experience of watching your child writhe on the floor over something like cereal would not be ideal or something that I would ever deal with.” (I truly believe that if I were ever with a child who pulled something like that, I would run across the store to show no association with the thrashing loon.)

Children can be such terrors. They are often very mean and hurtful towards other children. “You throw, you go,” (for those of you who don’t know, this means if you punch someone, you get to go home) is a nationwide rule in the schoolyard’s of nearly every elementary school.

This is a red flag that children are hellions. If this is a rule of the playgrounds that the collection of ruffians can all recite off the top of their heads, what does that say about the way they treat everyone around them?

We should take this proposal into consideration for the sake of our sanity when encountered with such situations. It’ll improve the lives of the worn parents, the high schoolers who get suckered into babysitting or anyone else who has these run-ins with the belligerent adolescents.

Molly Ungerer is a sophomore journalism major. Her column appears Tuesdays in the Collegian. Letters and feedback can be sent to letters@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 2:19 pm

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