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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Rating books for profanity and sexual content


PROFANITY
U.S. News reported that a study found that "nearly all young adult bestsellers contain at least some profanity" (not to mention sexual content).

Even more, a very concerned researcher found "more than 1,500 profane words, ranging from Gossip Girl—The Caryles's 50 "F-bombs" to Diary of a Wimpy Kid's occasional reference of bodily functions."

And Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines "features nearly 500 instances of profanity."

Other words found in YA books? Bastard, bitch, hell, damn.

Question 1: Would kids know about these words if they didn't read them? My 3-year-old niece once asked me "what the fuck?" I wonder where she learned it because we (as in my family) don't use that expression, and b) she can't read - yet :-)... Sponge Bob maybe? Hmmm.....

Question 2: Isn't it our responsibility (as parents) to teach our children not to USE foul language? The same way we teach them that lying, stealing, and smoking is bad.

SEXUAL CONTENT
I've been reading anything I can get my hands on since I was 13. Yet, I never had sex when I was a teenager (darn it)... even worst, I did not have a boyfriend until I was in my twenties...

Question 3: Are we raising mentally weak children that can't distinguish between fact and fiction; right and wrong? Or are we raising empty walking vessels that would automatically practice anything they read?

I agree that not all kids have the same level of maturity; therefore, we, as parents should monitor what our children read and watch.

Question 4: Would a rating system on books make it easier for parents to know what kids should and cannot read? This has been suggested but apparently they are too scared to actually do it. However, "a content warning on the back [..] would empower parents."

Question 5: Or should parents take more responsibility and engagement in their kids literary hobby? And by this I mean, read the damn book first, and then decide if you should let your child read it or not.

And since we are at it, make sure that when your kids go outside, they wear earplugs (god forbid someone curses and they hear it) and eye patches (you don't want them to, accidentally, see a couple kissing or holding hands on the street, train, or billboard).

Oh! and I almost forgot, Twitter and FaceBook will have to go too.

Hmm... Maybe we should reverse to the paleolithic... Wait, profanity can still be written on stones, right?