Youth in Today's Society
Young Entrepreneur Opening the Doors of Her New Establishment - Flaming Grill
Should Society Blame the Youth?
Society today is quick to cast disparaging remarks about the youth or to blame young people for many of the things which go wrong. However, if we would only take the time to reflect, we would recognize that often, the blame lies squarely at the doors of the adults in society.
Generally, young people respond to the models which adults hold up for their emulation. Hence, it is up to us adults, to model good behaviors for them to emulate. Rather than condemning and demotivating young people when they go astray, we should seek to encourage them and bring them back on track. We should also commend and support them when they are engaged in positive pursuits.
There are many positive youths who, despite peer pressure, unfavorable family background and home environment, poverty and other domestic and social issues are able to chart the right course and maintain their focus in being good and productive citizens.
- What about the kids who, through hard work and determination, excel at school and make their parents proud?
- What about the young people who are movers and shakers and organize groups and clubs to keep their peers engaged in positive pursuits?
- What about those involved in service clubs and assist in building their communities?
- What about those who put their God-given talents into income earning opportunities and become young entrepreneurs; employing themselves and providing employment for others?
Indeed there are lots and lots of progressive young people out there just as there are lots and lots of blamable adults.
Mover and Shaker Youth
Adults Ought to be Proper Role Models
Generally, young people model the behaviors which they see in the adults around them and sadly, many adults display unacceptable behaviors such as lying, swearing, consuming alcohol, using or trafficking illegal drugs, using violence as a means of solving problems, engaging in criminal activities, cheating in relationships, having poor work attitude, and the list goes on…
Yes, we adults are guilty of all these negative behaviors and we display them in the presence of our children and other young people. What are we saying to them? That these behaviors are all right for us to practice, but bad for them? Is it the ‘do as I say not as I do’ mentality? Sorry, but this does not work in modern society where young people question everything.
Moreover, some of us adults are guilty of raising our children badly. The authoritarian method of parenting has given way to permissiveness – from one extreme to the next! Some parents neglect to lay down rules for their children with respect to acceptable behavior and allow the children to grow up believing that it is okay to be selfish, disrespectful, untidy, greedy, dishonest, cowardly etc. Morals and values are neither taught nor upheld. It is as if modern children are supposed to come with a manual which teaches them acceptable standards of behavior.
Some parents, when confronted with a situation which they cannot handle (and which might have been created by their negligence), are wont to resort to violence against their own children. They flog them in rage from a sense of powerlessness and perhaps failure. The children, in turn, reciprocate likewise for they see themselves as being abused, not reprimanded and rightly so for violent attacks by parents cannot be taken as correction and unlike correction; they are not administered with an attitude of love.
Some parents neglect their responsibilities with regard to the proper upbringing of their children and leave it to the schools, to peer groups, to the television or to relatives. Then they complain that their children do not communicate with them. Should n’t they be the ones to open the doors to communication in the first place? If they fail to establish trust between themselves and their children, then understandably, the children will place their trust elsewhere.
Some children, from a very early age, have to fend for themselves because they come from difficult home situations. For example, they may come from single parent homes where the father is absent and does not provide for them; they may be abandoned by parents; they may belong to parents who are alcoholics or drug addicts or they may belong to child/teen parents (very prevalent these days). Whatever the case, their needs are not being met hence, such children often turn to petty crime in order to survive. They learn violence as a tool for survival. Who is to be blamed?
Stop Blaming the Youth!
We cannot continue to blame the youth for the problems in modern society for “children learn what they live and they live what they learn”(from poem by Dorothy Law Neite).This saying is as true today as it was yesterday. We adults must first look into ourselves and “be the change we want to see in the world” (Mahatma Gandhi).Until this is done society will continue to degenerate and peace and happiness will belong to history.
Adults, Be the Example You Want to See!
As an adult what kind of model do you present for the youth?
Youth in Society
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© 2012 Joyette Helen Fabien