Our Kids and Media

“6-Year-Old Suspended for Quoting LMFAO Song”

This headline caught my eye as I was browsing various articles about ADHD meds this morning.  I had to stop and read it because I wanted to know what line they quoted.  After all, my kids have been known to blurt out several lines from one of their songs as well.

The article on newser.com indicated that an Aurora, CO 1st grader had actually said the line, “I’m sexy and I know it.” to another student while in the lunch line at school.  This landed him a suspension.  Wow.  I know for a fact that my son has said that in school a few times because I’ve actually heard him do it.

All this made me stop and think for a moment.  My son is a little bit of an exception to the rule.  He is on the Autism spectrum and although very high functioning, he grabs on to bits of nonsense like that and spews them out at completely random times.  The school knows that it’s part of his condition.  However, the bigger problem I have with this is how he (and the child from the story) heard it in the first place.

Myself and other parents are waging a war with all forms of media these days and we are loosing.  You can’t turn on the TV without hearing this kind of crap.  This song in particular is part of an M&M’s ad.  Yep, cute little M&M candy guys are singing this and pretending to “strip” at a party.  I have to be honest, I laughed pretty hard when I saw it, but the truth is, it isn’t appropriate for children.  The M&M guys have become beloved childhood characters, right up there with My Little Pony and the Transformers.  Kids dress up as them for Halloween, buy school supplies featuring them, and even search out their funny commercials online to watch in their spare time.

I don’t know about the rest of the world, but I’m getting a bit exhausted from trying to police all of the things that kids are getting exposed to.  The TV and internet alone are a constant source of things that my kids shouldn’t see.  How are we supposed to keep up?

One last thought: I think that the school district may have really over-reacted on this.  How can a child be suspended for saying things they don’t even know the meaning of?  There is no malice or intent in that.  They simply need to be taught not to do it.

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