Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Parents Against LEGOs

Good parenting requires vigilance.  A good parent is mindful of the harm that could come to their child and make sure to set a good moral example for them.  Aside from the very real dangers in the everyday world - like food poisoning, reckless drivers, or gay people in positions of responsibility - children are especially vulnerable while at play.  The toys your children use might undermine the very values you're trying to instill in them.  They may leave children exposed to hidden dangers and corrupting influences.  That is why I have formed P.A.L. - Parents Against LEGOs.

The most corrupting influences are
always the most innocent in appearance.

I know what you're thinking.  With all the murder-simulating violent videogames out there, as well as music that encourages children to worship Satan or the movies that glorify sex acts which haven't been sanctified by church and state, well... why would something as innocuous, as banal, as traditional as LEGO building blocks be dangerous?  Like the raised bumps on the interlocking bricks themselves, the reasons against giving LEGOs to your unsuspecting children are numerous!

  1. LEGO promotes unrealistic body image

    Impressionable children model their appearances after those they look up to.  If children grow up with LEGO figurines, they look at their own bodies and feel inadequate.  With so much pressure from the media on appearance over substance, children learn at a young age that what matters most is having a cheerful, antiseptic smile at all times, broad, defined shoulders, perfectly rounded arms and perfectly square legs, a constantly rigid, upright posture, perfectly flat abs, and full 360 degree neck rotation.

    Folks, almost no one looks like this.  Yet the hype surrounding LEGOs suggest to children that they are somehow undesirable or unimportant if they don't conform to the (quite literally) rigid standards of LEGO figurines.  And sadly, the hollow interiors of LEGO characters only reinforce the notion that what matters most is on the outside of us: bright colors and the ability to posture ourselves to please others even at our own discomfort.

  2. LEGO encourages conformity and punishes individuality

    The basic assumption of LEGO bricks is that they are universally compatible.  LEGO figurines have minimal aesthetic differences - all of which are pre-determined and cannot be chosen by the characters themselves.  They are assigned to specific functions and are valued only for their collective assimilation, not their individual identities.  They must always interlock, they must never contain shapes or angles that would enable them to express themselves in a unique way.  Regardless of personal beliefs, they must "snap" together and bend to the whims of a central plan - of which they are merely a small part.

    The implications here are immeasurably damaging to a young person.  At just the age at which children emerge as autonomous beings, LEGOs are indoctrinating them to a worldview of the collective over the self, the societal goals over the individual's rights.  In the ideology of LEGO bricks, the end justifies the means; if one LEGO figure's head is needed on another's body or if arms must be interchanged, so be it.  Self-ownership and personal sovereignty are unheard of in the world of LEGO.  Is it any surprise, then, that these bricks originated from the socialist think-tank of Europe?

  3. LEGO desensitizes children to architecture

    Youngsters don't know the difference between bridges and roads or towers and tunnels.  These are values that must be taught.  Yet when playing with LEGOs, children mistakenly believe that such structures can be assembled on a whim - with no accountability or consequences for shoddy design.  If the tower collapses or the tunnel caves in, the virtually indestructible LEGO characters endure no pain or suffering.  And, as previously mentioned, individual LEGO figures are interchangeable, anyway.

    Imagine the long term effects of playing with LEGOs for many hours a day over the course of several years!  Children begin to assume that all structures - from cars and planes to houses and offices - are arranged effortlessly, without care for inhabitants or careful consideration to building materials.  We are raising a generation of children to believe that there are no consequences for hastily-constructed buildings... and carelessly-built lives.

  4. LEGO encourages dependence on government programs

    While the many other features of the LEGO character which damage a child's development have been identified, the most insidious is also the least obvious: the universal feature of the LEGO figurine's hands.  Aside from its disregard for individual fingers, the real scourge is the constant open palm.  All LEGO characters are looking for a hand out - and so will your son or daughter after a childhood of playing with them.

    Rather then being productive individuals, the LEGO figures rely on the collective welfare state of pre-fabricated objects that are made to fit the demands of their molded grip.  Children learn from LEGO  that the world revolves around their demands and must be met simply because they exist - not because they are willing to work hard and earn their own wealth.  LEGO "kits" always contain precisely what children expect of them and are given a detailed diagram that gives step-by-step instructions.  It is little wonder, then, that most kids today aren't willing to think for themselves or put in a hard day's work.  Why should they?  Have you ever seen a LEGO house built by the LEGO characters that live in it?  You can't spell "LEGO" without "ego."

  5. Oh, and they're also a choking hazard

Monday, November 14, 2011

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Paul in 90 Seconds

The Ron Paul Media Blackout continues.  Last night's GOP presidential debate lasted 3,600 seconds (60 minutes) and Ron Paul was only allowed 90 seconds. Of the eight candidates on the stage, the "average" candidate should have 450 seconds - of course Romney, Cain, and Perry had far more, reiterating the same Bush/Obama talking points of occupation and neo-colonialism. Ron Paul only got 20% of his fair air time!

Nonetheless, in 90 seconds Ron Paul was able to stand for:
-peaceful foreign policy through trade and diplomacy, not military aggression 
-ending torture for moral, legal, and practical reasons 
-ending the Obama Administration's program of unilaterally assassinating American citizens without due process of law 
-oppose nation-building, policing, and occupying countries across the globe
Some of my liberal friends seems puzzled or even outraged when I state my support for Ron Paul as president in 2012. But it's really not complicated.