Thursday, February 07, 2008

A Short Announcement and Then More T.V. Talk - Part Tres

Being the ignoramus I am, I completely forgot to make an important announcement a few days ago. I'm expecting...you to be on the edge of your seats waiting for my exciting news.

No, it's not another baby ~ at least not yet. ;)

I have become a Vision Forum Affiliate. This means that Vision Forum has graciously approved my blog and I am now able to advertise for them from here at The Monk's Wife. You may have noticed the banners on the side of my blog. This is why they are there.

I love Vision Forum. Monk loves Vision Forum. We order lots of good stuff from them on a fairly regular basis, specifically books. Some books we've ordered recently include:

~ Passionate Housewives Desperate For God - I will be doing a book review on this book in the coming weeks. EXCELLENT book!

~ Family Man, Family Leader - A book concerning the father's role being pivotal in having a biblical family. Monk is reading this and enjoying it immensely.

~ Family Driven Faith - a book that I bought Monk for Christmas, but have taken it over since I finished Passionate Housewives. It is by one of my personal favorite speaker/authors, Voddie Baucham. Let me tell you people - GOOD STUFF! Anyone who has children needs to read it and anyone who plans on having children needs to read it.

At any rate, if any of you kind people order anything through Vision Forum by clicking my link at the side of my blog, I stand to earn a small commission. This could come in handy so I can buy more books - because we all know how I feel about the television, right?

And Vision Forum is offering a special deal for the next few days and I am passing it along to you kind people. Order $75 worth of good stuff and get $25 off of your order! Can't beat that! So, click my link and take a look around (you're not obligated to buy just for clicking), if you see 1 or 15 things you like...well, now you can justify your purchase because you have a coupon!



And now that I've written an essay for my short announcement, I will commence with the novel on my 10 Reasons I Hate Television post - Part Tres.... Brevity is not my strong point.

As with my other post, I will reiterate that I am NOT judging or condemning anyone one way or another on how or if they watch television. These are my convictions and beliefs and I trust anyone who reads this will search the scriptures and come to their own conclusions.

And so. I was told by someone that another someone, whom I won't mention, said that some of my arguments were weak. Weak? I'm writing a blog post not a thesis, people. In all honesty, I could drag this one out for a good three weeks I bet. Let's try to remember that I'm a wife and mother first. Blogging is a little ways down on the list of priorities. I'm burning the midnight oil as it is just trying to get these things out (deep breath in), plus I'm trying to keep it at a reasonable length and therefore not being near as thorough as I would like. However, as we can tell from the length of my post already today, we can pretty much assume that I'm going for some Monk's Wife bloggy length record. Sorry to those who find this irritating. Well, not really.

And now I commence.

7. Barney the Dinosaur and Dora the Explorer. Need I say more?

Oh -ho- ho! I could say a whole lot more on this one. Children and t.v. go hand in hand. Or so the culture thinks.

I'm sure that Barney, Dora, Baby Einsteins and some other irritating character could do well in teaching our children a few things, right? I mean what can it hurt to let them watch a show where they learn things, right?

Wrong.

Because once parents see that this show keeps their child occupied and busy and out of their hair for a good while then it becomes easier and easier to let the television do the training and the teaching that the parents are supposed to be doing! Before you know it, your child has spent two hours (or more) in front of the tube. At this point they start becoming addicts.

Yes, I said addicts. In their squeaky little child voices they start to beg and cry to watch the television. Dora is on the brain and they need their fix! I speak the truth here, people. I know these things because I've done them. I'm living it. I am now having to UN-do those things which I should have never started in the first place. It is my responsibility to be my child's teacher and by letting them obtain unhealthy, dare I say sinful, habits - it is my fault!

In Deuteronomy 6 the Bible tells us how we need to be teaching our children.

Deu 6:5 You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.
Deu 6:6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.
Deu 6:7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.

*Emphasis mine

It is speaking to parents here. God wants US to teach our children about Him- A LOT! I'm not sure that God cares just where Dora is going or for that matter, what Swiper is swiping. Which by the way, the last time I looked was considered stealing and falls under one of the Ten Commandments. But swiping sounds so much nicer than stealing and we wouldn't want Swiper to have low self esteem because he takes things that don't belong to him. Poor Swiper, it's probably his parent's fault.

Ahem. Moving on.

We have a problem in the United States with childhood obesity. We let our children watch countless hours of television (while eating their Fruit Rollups, laden with delectable high fructose corn syrup - myself included), we buy them every new video system known to man, the schools take away their recess and then we have the experts appearing on Oprah, sitting around looking at each other all concerned, crying to Dr. Phil, and asking why.

Well, duh.

Playing comes naturally to children. They like to run and yell and chase each other. They love to be creative and use their imaginations. This is how they learn! And what do we do? We squash all of that wonderful God-given enthusiasm and energy by plopping them in front of the television to watch shows called Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!

One of my little girls, on almost a daily basis, comes to me or Monk and very quietly asks, "Momma/Daddy, can I watch just a little bit of television?". And on a daily basis we have to say no. Why? Because we let her get addicted to it. The ridiculous shows sucked her in and we let it happen. I will be honest and say that we let her watch a little every now and then. We try to keep it at one 30 minute show and then it goes right back off. She gets her "fix" and then she's good to go. Slowly, she's learning to go without.

Some, who will remain anonymous, will play devil's advocate with me and say to me, "why hate the television if it's the parent's fault?" And to this I will respond, "Yep. You're right". It is my fault, but aye, before ye go casting stones hear me words; the television is a slippery slope for all of us, but especially where children are concerned. If I didn't have a t.v. or didn't turn it on then we wouldn't have these problems. It is SO incredibly easy to let the television babysit when one needs to cook dinner or when one needs to finish doing _______(fill in the blank).

Is this an excuse? Maybe. Maybe not. But I can tell you what it is. It's a warning. Like I said before, television and children do go hand in hand. They do. But not in a good way.

In the process of detoxing my little girls from television I've seen some amazing things. I've seen their love of playing babies come back. I've seen their desire to play imaginary house with one another come back. I've seen a desire to go outside and swing their little hearts out come back. I see an interest in helping me bake or clean up. I see healthy, vibrant children that have learned that there are other things, more exciting things, to do besides watch the tube.

This, my friends, is a good thing.

And because of the excessive length and the fact that I'm burning the midnight oil and have a nursing infant ~ I'm callin' it quits on this post. I know I only covered one point, but I feel as if I covered it thoroughly (minus more scripture which I may come back and insert).

Comments, concerns, questions and yes, even tomatoes are welcome! Hope to hear your wonderful thoughts on this very controversial subject! :) Play nice now, ya hear?

7 comments:

Shelly said...

I know I already touched on this with yesterday's comment so I don't have much more to say. Sorry I jumped ahead of ya! But I will say this about today's kids' shows (even though this doesn't exactly go along with your point) - the shows kids have today are so dumb & seem like the writers of them are high when writing the story lines. I mean, I'm not 28 yet but I thought we had great cartoons even in my day. Now kids get stuff like Bratz! Have you seen that cartoon? No wonder little girls don't act like little girls anymore!

It is sad to see the kids that can only be controlled when they have a tv show or movie in front of them. And when they try to run around & be a kid they're told they have ADHD & can't control themselves. And rather than the parents taking control of the kid they just drug 'em up & sit them in front of the tv & try to find programming that will help build up their self-esteem.

Oo! Did I just open up a whole 'nother can of worms?! :)

Michelle said...

Well Shelly,
Apparently I've offended the masses or you were the only one brave enough to comment! LOL! Maybe I need to reiterate more that these are our decisions!


Your can 'o worms was a good one and really could be a whole separate post! I was told by the experts 10 years ago that The Boy had ADHD (he was in first grade). I rejected the meds when everyone told me I was crazy. He was a vigorous, energetic little boy who didn't get enough time at school to burn off steam. He eventually grew out of it and now instead of lacking the attention span he just lacks the will because he has more important things to think about, like football. And football. Oh yeah, and football.:)

Jedi Miller said...

Theres not much to argue with here, Dora and the like are unbearable to sit through.

Now just because there are stupid brain wasting shows on tv doesn't mean TV is bad.

Bad parenting is bad not the TV itself...

for a good laugh come see my pics I posted :)

Shelly said...

I probably should do a post on ADHD at some point. I'll have to pull out my notes from abnormal psychology where we listed the common "symptoms" of it. It's pretty funny!

Michelle said...

Jed,

You said, "Now just because there are stupid brain wasting shows on tv doesn't mean TV is bad."

Really? And that's why they have to put a rating system on network television? 95% of the shows on network television are bad. Christians have just become so numb (or flippant) to immodesty, s*exual innuendo, violence and and the violation of the 3rd commandment that we don't care anymore.

Keep trying to convince me otherwise though ~ it's fun! ;)

mindi said...

I wholeheartedly agree about the whole focal point of the room being the television. I DESPISE that. I want people to be able to chat with each other, not watch tv. Thankfully, right now it's very uncomfortable to watch tv the way my furniture is situated. I don't mind it one bit :)

Michelle said...

I'm glad you started this series of posts. It's certainly interesting - and so is your husband's POV on his post!

I just read a great book on the subject of kids & TV and had plans to blog about it, so I think I'll put it up on Monday. Just in case you're not getting enough TV talk here at your own place ;-)