The Operations Varsity Blues scandal  has received widespread coverage and the attendant mockery. The coming dribbling out of the twists and turns should keep us entertained and the night show hosts with fodder for months. Easy to laugh and point fingers if this was not a shameful and embarrassing statement of our culture.

The easy aspects to acknowledge is how the rich will always find a way to privilege no matter how low they have to stoop. And we are just a country of the entitled who more and more feel the ends justify the means at every turn. The vision of the forest through the trees is blurred so badly, I imagine with some rigorous self reflection we could all find an example of our own personal demand for something that could be more fully earned. Also the tax deduction these folks pilfered and the students left out of the loop go without saying.

The dynamic I want to bring sunlight to today is of the 100% counterproductive intent these parents foisted on their kids. Teaching them to receive benefits without consequential work/effort is a path to guaranteed failure for any child let alone our next generation. What are the chances these kids would develop a genuine, authentic, and grounded  personality, or outlook on life if these are the major body of experiences they draw from in their formative years?

The scary part is this mindset is seeping into our young people at a rate that will become the norm rather than exception soon…if it hasn’t already. My nephew is a math teacher at a well-to-do prep school in Hawaii. He recently asked me what the % of A’s and B’s were awarded to the kids at his school across all topics. Thinking back to my  high school days I confidently answered 75%. Even with my bottom quartile experience then, I thought surely I was in the ballpark.

I dropped the phone when he said 96%!!!! I’d heard of grade inflation, but this is a hyper level that would embarrass the Weimar Republic.  I know we all want our kids to have 4.0’s, how do you separate the wheat from the chafe with that process? He shared that when kids get C’s the parents are in the Dean’s office asking what is wrong with the teachers. Math being an objective subject (usually just one answer) he has received flack for handing out middle of the range grades.

He went on to share how kids can be utterly devastated by a C or other typical teenage  events like being cut from the team or turned down for the prom (the word suicide is coming up way to often). The coddling of our kids is bringing on a generation that can only survive in a safe space.

Classic challenges (a better word is reality) impinging upon our young are resulting in what appears to be low level forms of PTSD? Attaching the consequence to the action has never been more important. Compromising that stimulus/response communication is only mollifying the parents feelings. Duh. The strategy of teaching kids even low level coping skills needs to move up to the top of the priority list for educators, coaches, and parents.

Obviously all kids do not possess this attitude, but it clearly appears to be growing IMO. The message I take away from this dumbing down event is first to take the necessary time and effort to figure out if you are coddling your kids. And second if you are cut it out.

Just sayin’.

 Final Thought –
“I covered my face because they had taken my wisdom teeth out”    – Josh Brolin

More later,
Max Power

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