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Location: Ames, Iowa, United States

Thursday, January 19, 2006

A Harsh Lesson In Parenting

So John Walker Lindh (the American Taliban) is a good kid? That's what I get from his father's pleading for clemency. We all try to raise our kids properly. But the idea that good parenting created this type of person, who would go on a crusade into Afghanistan to fight his own country is a little far fetched. My kid hated me too, but now attends Iowa State, instead of Taliban U.
The most likely scenario is this: The parents read some sort of book or took advice that told them that "self esteem" is the most important thing for a child. No reprimanding. No punishment. No competition. No goals. No real achievement.
Note to parents: The kid's friends need to be monitored. The kid's after school activities need to be monitered, and even regimented (sports is a good way). Demand that the child try hard. Success isn't just measured by victory. It is measured by effort.
Stay active in your child's life. Be there for the sports, and the performances. If you are able, try coaching. Take the time. Life is short. Your kid can be an FBI agent. Your kid can be a bank robber. It's up to you as a parent to guide your child's future.
Don't ask the president of the United States to help your child. Unless your child is being nominated as a member of the Supreme Court, or the president's cabinet.

I'll be back

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