How to Teach Kids ‘Independence’–Not!

Barb Wire

Do you ever get the impression that our society is utterly, totally clueless?

Observe this commercial for an “icon-based watch that kids can read.” Unless you are an ancient Egyptian using hieroglyphics, that is not quite what we mean by reading.

The watch supposedly “teaches kids good habits” and “fosters independence, responsibility, and self-esteem.” Children will demonstrate their independence by doing what the watch tells them to do. As for self-esteem, there’s already more than enough of it floating around out there. Maybe the watch can somehow create a “safe space” where they’ll never see or hear anything they don’t want to see or hear.

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Such good habits as I have, my parents taught me, with help from grandparents, aunts, and uncles. We called this “family.” Hopelessly old-fashioned, eh? Eventually the wise men of this fallen world will find a way to replace the family altogether.

I’d like to get off this ride now, please.

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

Lee Duigon
Lee Duigon, a contributing editor with the Chalcedon Foundation, is a former newspaper reporter and editor, small businessman, teacher, and horror novelist. He has been married to his wife, Patricia, for 34 years. See his new fantasy/adventure novels, Bell Mountain and The Cellar Beneath the Cellar, available on

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