I’ve been told by a friend to blog more ’cause she’s getting bored at work with nothing to read.
So here’s something, which nearly made me pop a blood vessel in my neck yesterday:
My co-worker came across a story today – one of many, as it turns out – that the early episodes of Sesame Street are apparently no longer suitable for today’s toddlers.
I dug up the New York Times article, which was a review of the DVDs – the source, I’m sure, of many blog rants and articles today – and among some examples the reporter unearthed, of why early Sesame Street is now hazardous to preschoolers’ health:
– The Cookie Monster being well on his way to becoming a diabetic by eating all those cookies.
– Oscar the Grouch was going through life with his depression untreated and not wanting to improve his lot in life beyond that pigsty of a trash can.
– The smoking – and eating – of pipes by Alistair Cookie, a.k.a. Cookie Monster, which was modeling the wrong behaviour. (He’s a bad mofo, ain’t he?)
I’m not sure what Virginia Heffernan thought of the whole thing as she was writing this piece – maybe even she was shaking her head in disbelief – but I’m almost inclined to go ahead and pop that vessel bulging in my neck with a sharp pencil.
WHAT is this world coming to? First Santa, now this. Let’s face it, Big Bird’s already treading that fine line with his imaginary friend Mr. Snuffleupagus. And there was that obscene rumour a handful of years ago about roomies Ernie and Bert possibly being gay…
So happy, tickle-me Elmo can’t possibly be safe for long. I mean, some kids in the States get punished at school for hugging other students. The clock has to be ticking for The Fuzzy Red One’s demise.
But in all seriousness, I’m about to cross the line into “When I was a kid …” territory. If people are going to keep editing kids’ shows, prevent them from showing affection towards fellow human beings, even make them wear helmets to go tobogganing, what kind of adults are you going to end up breeding?
Sure, things aren’t the way they were 20 years ago. But how is that okay for creating a whole new generation of mollycoddled automatons in the making?
I just think it’s completely skewed when you’re editing out puppets who eat fake pipes to make TV viewing more suitable, and getting childhood characters to watch their weight to influence young kids from getting fat …
But no one seems to be stopping, for example, the sales of video games where you can shoot people and run over hookers (which, by the way, is said to contribute to the inactivity and obesity of children, should they play said games for hours on end without seeing the outside world).
All right. Stop this society – I think I’m ready to get off.
(Photo illustration courtesy of Kevin Van Aelst, accompanying the New York Times article linked above.)