Wednesday, June 22, 2011


I just watch a video from A&E which really got me thinking, about a lot of things.  The video showed Middle Eastern children between the ages of 6 and 9 in military fatigues, and combat rifles.  Some of the children could barely even hold the weapon let alone aim it correctly, but none the less there they were running, popping in magazines, and yes even firing the weapons. They were being trained in the ways of war either by their parents, or just other adults; who were going on an on about Jihad. 

My 9 year old walked out of his room to make him self something for lunch; he was still wearing his hockey uniform, and holding his hockey stick.  The irony struck me; I dare say that it even almost panicked me.  I looked at my son in his uniform, and then at the 7 year old on TV in his uniform.  Both children, so young, both with the potential to change the world for the better, but one being quickly corrupted as if his life was already over.  He was being trained to end my son’s life.

“Dad are all Muslims bad?”  What should I say here?  I didn’t see my son come into this world, because I was fighting the Muslims after September 11th during operation Enduring Freedom, and now my son was getting his first glimpse of someone his own age being trained to kill him.  I’d be lying if I said what I saw wasn’t making me angry, but how can I let my son fill himself with fear and hate, because of something on TV?  How can I let my innocent child feel that kind of animosity towards an entire race of people?  I sat silently and just looked at him for a couple minutes, I new he needed an answer, I also knew if I told him what I felt it would be wrong.  I kind of stepped out of my body for a second and said something that honestly kind of surprised me.

“Son I don’t rightly know.”  “Everyman has to make decisions in their life.”  “So if you’re asking me if every one who worships Allah or Mohamed is bad, the answer is I don’t know.”  What I will tell you, is this, if you judge people based on their race you’re a peewit.  You have to take men and women one at a time.  The one thing people do have total control over is the choice to be good or evil.  We can pray for that boy on TV and hope that he fills his heart with enough peace and love in his life, that he won’t have enough room in his heart to hate us…And I thought about my own feelings and I looked at him and said, I love you very much, but could you do me a favor…?  “What Dad?”  Say the same prayer for me to.

Monday, June 6, 2011


Young children have short memories.  It is important to keep discipline from day to day consistent.  I do not believe in spanking personally, I think it is a very temporary fix to a potentially very long term problem.  I also don’t believe in simple time outs, for the same reason.  I think it is important for a child to be pro-active in his/her discipline.  I guess I believe in discipline and not punishment.  Here is an example of what I mean.  When one of my kids do something wrong, I make them stand straight as possible (don’t let them lock their knees if your going to try this) and hold a pen with their index fingers arms straight out in front of them.  I explain what they did wrong, and why it is wrong, and then I ask them for feed back.  This way I keep their mind occupied; while their bodies are getting physically strong (a pen can feel like 200 pounds after a time in this position) I only recommend 5 minutes to start.  If they do it again, I will use this method twice as long as the last time.  I’ve only had to enforce it more than once, one time, when my oldest was having a difficult time not interrupting people while they were talking.  Then I realized that the reason he did it a second time, was because my wife had accidently caught the living room carpet, and fireplace mantle on fire, so I had to apologize to him for this, as he was interrupting me because of an emergency.  I did decide to make him hold the pen anyway so that he remembered to say FIRE when he saw an emergency of that nature.  The point is, so far in 10 years neither of my children has made the same mistake twice, and my oldest generally disciplines himself.  I really think I owe this to consistency.

“Pardon one offence and you encourage the commission of many.”
--Publilius Syrus