Ignorance and Parental Bliss
Ignorance is bliss. That’s my credo and I’m sticking to it. And so are many other parents, apparently.
Yes, like many exhausted moms and dads in similar situations, I often plead ignorance and turn a blind eye when confronted by the following:
- A piles of dirty laundry in need of washing
- Piles of clean laundry that have not been folded and are now wrinkled
- Scribbles on the wall (see photo below)
- Banana stuck to the dining room floor
- An indeterminate object that is encased in a Tupperware container on the second shelf in the back of my fridge
- Utility bills
- A nutritious family meal, seven days a week
- Whining, anytime
|A masterpiece on the dining room wall. Yet no one took credit for its creation.|
The “philosophy of ignorance” is all around us as well. We see it daily in news stories, online and otherwise. Examples of these instances only facilitate the ideology that claiming not to know exonerates us from our responsibilities. It becomes increasingly more difficult to raise children who cherish the value structure that encourages “owning up” to ones responsibilities and actions.
|Image of Enron CEO Kenneth Lay courtesy of www.mylot.com|
Public figures and the easy availability of “The Ignorance Defense” makes it almost impossible to ignore (pun intended) the fact that our kids are regularly shown that there’s an easy way out. Claiming not to know better is often encouraged and supported in the media. It makes it tougher to do our jobs as parents.
|Image of Bernie and Ruth Madoff courtesy of www.examiner.com|
As guilty as I and many other parents are of ignoring the drudgery of daily life, this is very different than pleading ignorance about more important things. Most of us know that the pile of laundry that has sit in the corner one day too long is not as life-altering as some of the situations portrayed in the broader media channels. We won’t lose our houses and worse if our favorite shirt isn’t clean. That being the case, larger missteps that make the news are frequently overlooked, despite their consequences and repercussions. It leaves us to wonder whether the culture of ignorance is so accepted that what was once perceived as wrong is now considered okay. After all, we are a society that adheres to the cult of celebrity; by this token, monkey see monkey do, unfortunately.
How do you teach children to “own up” to their responsibilities? Has the “Ignorance is Bliss” ideology that is often portrayed in media gone too far?