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Friday, October 02, 2009

Bubble Wrap

Great stuff bubble wrap.

It's in equal measure, a source of entertainment and a means to protect something from harm.

Something like a child for example.
You can laugh, but it would seem that this is the direction that society is heading as we reach the end of the first decade of the 21st century.
The recent case of the nursery worker who abused and took sexually explicit photos on her phone of children at the nursery where she worked has disgusted the nation, myself included, as pretty much any case of sexual assault involving children does, but there has been a knee-jerk reaction of epic proportions in the media.
"Should people who care for children be banned from using mobile phones?"

Oh yes, great idea.
How many children's lives do you think have been saved after a carer/teacher/group leader has called the emergency services when an accident has taken place for example?

Hang on, that nursery worker made contact with her other paedo chums via Facebook, so maybe we should stop carers from having access to the internet as well?
Hmmm, restricted communications and no access to the web? Sounds like we'd be treating them exactly the same as a convicted sex offender.

Yes this is a troubling story, but by all accounts she was well liked and trusted in the community and had passed a criminal background check, yet still the popular media and panic-monger websites like continue to push for tighter and tighter restrictions on the rest of society, even though the overwhelming majority of children are entirely safe at their nurseries or primary schools. They continue to push their 'paedophile on every street corner' propaganda and claim that "yes, it's all worth it if we protect just one child".
So where do we stop? How far do we go to protect our kids? (speaking as someone who doesn't and never will have kids, I'm using the Royal 'our').
Ban cameras?
Ban pencils and sketch pads?
Random raids on childminders 'just in case'?
Only employ blind computer-illiterate mutes?

Also let me ask you this, dear reader.
If you've visited my little oasis of cyber tranquillity before then there's a good chance you have some idea of the kind of person I am. If I tell you that I too have recently passed a criminal background check in the last few weeks, would you then allow me to look after YOUR children?

I assume that your natural reaction is to say no, for one or more of possibly three reasons.
1. You don't know me, but did you know the person who minds your kids when you're at work?
2. I'm a man. When I was a kid I was looked after by lots of people. My gran, my cousins Liz & Ann, Charlie the old man next door. The problem now is that 21st century society has convinced you that a man, any man, cannot be trusted with children. Paedos on every corner, remember?
3. You're a regular visitor to my blog and the thought of your kids being looked after by me scares you more than a paranoid schizophrenic at a showing of The Blair Witch Project.

As you walk down your high street tomorrow, wear ear defenders. The noise from the rotor blades of all the helicopter parents is deafening.


Steve said...

Speaking as a parent who's 2 year old attend nursery 5 days a week I can only imagine the stress and horror of the parents and children involved in this appalling case. But you're right - banning technology does not solve the problem. You take what precautions you can and trust your instincts. You check regularly. You watch your children like hawks. You never relax your guard. But you have to trust people sometime or risk damaging your kids in another way. At my son's nursery the staff always works in twos or threes - it's safer for everyone. I meet them all regularly as does my wife. My son is happy and confident. Therefore I know he is safe. I've accepted that there is little else I can do but to stick to the above.

For what it's worth, Inchy, I'd trust you with my kids. Any time your free to babysit please let me know... I can get them to you in a few hours...!

Inchy said...

I'm not good with kids, I drop them quite often.

Steve said...

Seeing the positives - that's a surefire way to toughen them up.