HEN you think about it, it’s amazing not how evil we are but how good— especially considering many of our childhoods. Look at the stuff that as youngsters we’re not only exposed to, but often in direct contact with.
In video-gaming, violence (da-da-da-da-blam-BOOM) is fun, requiring no trip to the hospital, much less the morgue. Ditto for cartoons. Movies depict adults and children in sometimes horrific situations. Even documentaries depict unimaginable acts, from genocide on.
So we turn off the television. We get guppies for pets and watch them eat their young. We move up to hamsters, but they eat their young too— yechhh! Even cats on occasion have been known to indulge (barf). Good thing dogs, at worst, usually just lap up their own vomit (slurp slurp slurp).
Finally we turn to our toys. We try to kill ourselves on bikes and sleds, auto-incinerate with canned heat, chemistry sets, and fireworks. We’re presented with as innocuous a present as a magnifying glass and use it to focus the sun’s rays so we can make ants and other bugs go crackle-pop.
Not to mention that every weapon imaginable and then some has been the model for a toy. We use child’s play as an excuse to fight, shoot, tie-up, and torment our brothers and sisters, as well as our friends, and for that they all love us dearly, all their live-long days.
Maturity is tolerance, a symptom of strength and security.