When the Parents Leave the Room

Not gaming related, at all.

I love my kids, truly. They can drive me crazy at times, and I am more impressed than much else when that happens. Both are wildly curious and get an absolute joy of testing boundaries. Frankly, I wouldn’t expect less from them if they want to have a “successful” life – folks aren’t just going to hand them things after all. Their reaction to those boundaries is certainly different, in that one will find the sneakiest way around them, while the other will try to brute force their way through. As parents, we need to apply a different response to both approaches, which can be quite exhausting. But ultimately fulfilling (that’s the plan at least!)

If we are not present, then they have a sort of lord of the flies approach to getting things done, which effectively spirals down to baser instincts and emotional outbursts. It’s a bit like a game of one-upmanship, where one crazy stunt enables the next one to be a little bit crazier. It always ends poorly, and then we adults pick up the pieces. It’s arguably better now, as they’ve gotten older and have more tools available to them, but neither are teens yet, so there’s truckloads of maturity to go.

Why does this matter? Well, there’s a need of enablement for childish behaviour. We’ve all been at a restaurant with a kid acting up to a crazy degree. Normally we just brush it off, part of the age bit. There are times where you might speak up, either trying to help the (likely exhausted) parent, or just to set some additional boundaries. It’s ok to act out, it’s an emotional reaction to something. The response to that event is the important part, so that there’s some learning afterwards.

Where the wheels of the bus fall off is when adults are doing this, and the adults in charge encourage that behavior. In no sane place on this planet would people storming the capital, breaking doors, be considered “normal”. It shouldn’t be acceptable to scream obscenities at someone like Westboro Baptist Church does. Or to threaten/bomb/kill people. There are “rules” to ensure society works and we respect each other. That only works if everyone agrees and supports those rules. If a group decides those rules only apply to others and not themselves, then thankfully society has a term for that.

In the more moderate spaces, those folk get shipped into corners and ignored or excluded. That is a challenge with 24/7 propaganda news channels, and near impossible with our current iterations of social media. This can happen to the most sane person too, if you brainwash / gaslight them enough. We’ve all got enough stories of people stuck in some sort of conspiracy theory rabbit hole.

The US is likely to revert a 50 year old decision to enable support for abortions at the national level, and instead move it to the state level. (I have my views.) Some people don’t agree with this and have opted to protest outside the judges’ homes. In an orderly society this would be seen poorly and folks would be admonished and told to return home. But not in the US, where even killing people you disagree with is somehow acceptable if you can prove (now this is an interesting word) you feel threatened (to the broadest sense). It’s really quite spectacular from the outside, as there are certainly ripple effects across the globe. The US prime export is culture after all.

It’s a sad space, where even those trying to apply some level of sanity to events are simply shouted down. Further when folks are elected solely on their ability to make a scene. I get the frustration and the boiling point. Things are objectively worse for my kids generation than they are for my parents – across nearly every single imaginable metric. I’m not following how having more yelling somehow accomplishes anything to fix that problem, other than inciting more yelling and worse.

Perhaps there’s a chance that the adults have not all left the room and that there are people that actually want to help others. It’ll be an interesting ride until the adults come back into the room.

8 thoughts on “When the Parents Leave the Room

  1. I agree. It is amazing to me to watch the extremes battle it out while I wait for an adult to stand up to admonish the children. If it is not acceptable for people to riot at the capital, I refuse to acknowledge the whole subversion line, it was a riot. No different than the multiple riots and looting in cities across the country. Any of my friends that are taking the threaten the Supreme Court with violence as acceptable are finding me no longer a friend. When I was born, it was before Roe, I grew up in the world when it wasn’t the norm. The current court “draft” calls into question the flawed logic that it is protected under the right to privacy. So “if” it gets overturned, and we need to keep in mind that along with this opinion brief there is also a counter that is being written before the final vote and it is officially read.

    Lots of people missed that day in history class I guess.

    If it is overturned then it falls back on the states to write their own laws. And in the future if a state tries to make a law that goes to far it goes back up the chain and we could see the overturn overturned. It all falls under the 10th amendment. The saber rattling going on, oh we need to pass this so it’s a federal law is bull shite. It’s an election year, and they want a talking point. They could easily do the same with gun control, could outlaw cigarettes (if it really is about saving lives). No, they will vote party lines, point to those that vote for or against, and go home to sleep in their million dollar homes. Someone is going to do something stupid, and this is going to get very ugly. I hope the person that leaked the brief is happy about what they did, because if anyone is hurt, it’s on them.

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  2. Part of growing up is realizing that there aren’t any adults in the room. No one is saving us.

    As for “civility,” well… it’s easy to be civil when something doesn’t impact you in any way. I live in a State with a trigger law, and is likely to pass a Texas-style bounty-hunter bill pitting people against each other to encourage a culture of fear. Imagine what that is going to do to people who may already feel alone. Will they just decide to keep the pregnancy, or will they have a back alley abortion or take pills that may or may not be what they say (because the safe pills have been banned too)? Meanwhile, we already have over 400,000 kids in foster care and I don’t see any Republican calls to increase funding to address that.

    And once Roe goes, next on the docket will be same-sex marriage, which will cause my family members to (once again) become second-class citizens.

    This isn’t some hypothetical. This is real life, that people are living every day. Honestly, we’re all lucky that people still think the soap box works. Because it’s clear the ballot box doesn’t. Have I mentioned that my State submitted a redistricting map so gerrymandered that the Supreme Court (of my State) ruled it unconstitutional four times? But, hey, apparently Republicans can… just ignore the courts until it becomes official by default.


    • Well, same sex marriage is an entirely different ruling that was handed down in 2015. For it to be reverted there would need to be challenges in the lower courts. I’m sure if Roe is struck down there will be very specific language restricting it to only abortion. Regardless there are politicians proclaiming the end of civilization that have been in office 30+ years that had many opportunities to make it law. It’s been an issue for as long as I’ve voted. It comes down to does the ruling adhere to constitutional law.


      • As this current court proves, “constitutional law” means whatever anyone wants it to mean. With stare decisis dead, everything is up for grabs. Alito might try to narrow the scope to just abortion, but he’s already on record saying Obergefell v. Hodges was incorrectly decided, with the exact same reasoning that it was an “inferred” right not in the text. Not sure how he squares that thought with the Ninth Amendment, but it’s almost irrelevant since clearly he (and the others) start from the outcome they desire and work their way backwards. Stuff enough unqualified judges on the bench, and the law is whatever you want it to be.

        As for codifying Roe into law, there have been effectively zero opportunities in the last 50 years because of the filibuster. Democrats would have needed 60 Senate votes, and they only had that many one time for about 72 days, just long enough to pass the ACA. That’s assuming all 60 would have been Pro-Choice, which they were not. All of which would have proved irrelevant since Alito and ilk could overturn it whenever convenient.

        Things are going to get very, very ugly. States will pass laws to turn miscarriages into manslaughter investigations. Women will be forced to carry pregnancies to term even if the fetus is incompatible with life. There are nine States that already have trigger laws on the books with no exceptions for rape or incest. Texas-style sanctioned bounty-hunting will turn families and friends against each other. Connecticut has passed a law to shield people from being sued by other States for getting an abortion there, which is going to lead to ever-more ridiculous State laws trying to criminalize the free movement of people. All for what? Has the Pro-Life party ever passed any laws to increase aid to the 400,000+ kids currently in foster care? What about expanding parental leave, daycare assistance, or anything at all to encourage the health and safety of children already here, along with however many there will be coming. I think George Carlin addressed this best.


    • Or perhaps we are the adults. If it truly is each on their own… then I guess move? I am not following why its worth the hassle when there are so many roadblocks.


      • New Jersey has passed abortion rights laws, we have same sex marriage laws, strict gun control laws. Any major social issue you can think of, I’m sure we have a law for that. And we are, if not the top, one of the top most expensive states to live in. I’m sorry that you feel that this possible change to a Supreme Court decision is going to destroy your life and family. I’m in the center. I absolutely agree that there should be more funding for foster care, should be an easier path to adopt children, should be more done to feed kids that are starving. I believe Planned Parenthood gets about $1.8 billion a year in federal funding, and yes I know they can’t use that money to cover abortion costs, but it is used to cover all the other services, including doctors salary, buildings, equipment, etc. another $600 million from private donations. They have been pushing to repeal the Hyde act and allow for Medicare to pay for abortion and personally I am against that. Medicare is strained as it is. Maybe if we weren’t sending $10 million to Pakistan for gender studies, along with hundreds of other little funding programs abroad we could help kids here, offer decent health care programs for everyone. And find a middle ground on abortion. Those pushing to it to be legal beyond 24 weeks? I would be dead set against that. It’s a tough issue. I can understand things happen, bringing a child into the world is a big decision. But also abortion rates have been consistently falling every year since the 1970’s.

        Oh, and back on adoption, we tried the fertility route, spent about $60,000 over two years. When we were unsuccessful we looked into adoption. We could not come up with the tens of thousands of dollars to adopt a baby, and all of the children available in our area from foster care had special needs because their mother was an addict. It was heart breaking to look at the kids, but we knew we couldn’t care for a 6 year old in counseling for violent outbursts and destructive behaviors even if the state was covering their medical. Believe me, I’m not just using an extreme example. We seriously looked into it.


      • One last thing I forgot. In New Jersey an employer with over 500, I believe, employees must offer two rounds of fertility treatments with their health care plan. Sounds great, except the Democrats that wrote and got the law passed allowed an exclusion. If a company is self insured, ie, they pay the claim up front, then submit to a company like Aetna, they are allowed to not offer it on personal or religious views of the company leadership. My wife works for a company with 5,000 employees, they are self insured, and their view is that you should be able to get pregnant on your own. Once you have a child, they will add the kid to your insurance without question.

        So I am always suspicious of any law passed by either party. It all sounds great on paper or in a sound bite, but the devil is in the details.


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