How about this for a novel idea? Taking full responsibility for ourselves - how does that sound? It's a bit of a shock, I realise, but just consider it for a moment. Imagine a world in which you are not told to do this or do that, to eat this and not eat that. Who's responsibility should it be to decide what goes down your gullet? I think it's your responsibility. You must look after yourself, because you are an adult. If you have children, then you must look after them too.
You must make choices about healthy diet, exercise, smoking and drinking. You must guide your children in these matters, not sit on the sofa waiting for some initiative to appear on the television, some campaign to tell you how to do your job as a parent.
Such a shame that the system is run in favour of people who are totally irresponsible, they smoke to excess, fifty or sixty cigarettes a day, they get drunk on cheap alcohol and they grow fat for lack of exercise. What a disaster for the sensible man or woman with moderate habits. Tough cookie for you if you like an occasional glass of wine or a couple of cigarettes on a warm evening. You will have to pay the price just the same. Your alcoholic drinks will be priced so high that you won't bother to buy them and the same thing will happen to your tobacco. Why should you worry? You already pay for people who smoke themselves to death or drink until they have a liver like a breeze block. You pay if a forty stone man has to have his kitchen wall demolished so that he can be transported to hospital via a crane.
Do not be tempted to apportion blame to any of these hapless victims for they are not to blame. It's always someone else's fault. Why do they booze? Because they were abandoned as a child. Why are they fat? Because they were bullied at school. Why do they smoke so much? Because nobody will help them to give up. How can they do it themselves? How totally unreasonable to expect an adult man or woman to do something for themselves?
If the children of these adults are unruly and in trouble at school or known to the local police, how can it be the problem of mum and dad? If the little boy or little girl is as fat as the side of a house and sprawls on the sofa all day, that must be someone else's fault. Someone else needs to deal with that, perhaps by using the word 'NO'. Remember that word? Remember the idea that children cannot always have what they want?
Away with parents who believe that their role finishes at the moment of birth or even at the moment of conception! Children are not just a joy but a responsibility. Mum and dad must make the chidren's decisions for them until they can make their own. Adults live the life resulting from their own choices. We make our bed, we must lie on it.
Peter Pan could fly through the air but it's doubtful whether he could balance a household budget or keep the back garden in order.
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