Monday, November 15, 2010

Looking ahead and concerns for our youth

Sometimes I find myself thinking about all the monsters out there in our society. I find myself realizing that I must teach my son to defend himself against them. It's a very complex mode of thoughts.

If I were only talking about physical altercations with school/work bullies or some mugger somewhere, it would be simpler. If I were only talking about stranger danger, it would be fairly concrete. But no, it goes much deeper than that. It can also get far more convoluted.

There are many kinds of human monsters out there and the ways they will seek to do damage are as diverse anything we know. Some of them victimize for possibilities of money, others for some perverted pleasure. It reminds me of one of the types of bullying I had to live with. There was no defense against it and it worked very very well.

It was done by some very good acting and sounded very convincing. Once I was sitting by the projector in class as the teacher was talking. One student piped up and said, "David, leave the projector alone". He sounded convincing and the teacher bought it. They already thought of me as a "problem child" so it was easy to get me into trouble. I was thrown out of class without touching the projector or anything near it. The boy thought it was outright hilarious.

False accusations and other ways of being used are things I fear for my kids. Our kids on the spectrum are reported to having trouble with areas of trust and even being too trusting, or gullible. Unfortunately, this is one fire that has to teach it's heat in it's own way on many levels. You can't teach them to watch out for everyone and everything. You can only do your best to teach good decision making. Teach that if something seems wrong, don't do it. Even that won't protect them from someone who will prey on their good intentions.

It's also sad, that onlookers will take this little act at face value and leave the victim hanging for it. That we haven't learned in our society by now, too look deeper than the surface of what's happening. That is how innocent people get smeared and marked because others don't stop to look at the details that matter. That's why we are all supposed to be innocent until proven guilty. But that doesn't seem to apply to general society. Something that needs to change.

Until it does, I will have to do what I can to help my son prepare for the predators out there. They never stop coming. I'm still a target and I'm forty. It's a very sobering fact. So, as you walk around out there today, try to take notice of the underlying details. Ask yourself what all the possibilities could be. Just to see what you can come up with. And try not to take that person you saw, or how someone else marked them, at face value. If it really matters, seek out the truth for yourself.

Picture of Nelson Muntz property of FOX.

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