Train up a child...

Monday, October 23, 2017

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Dear Editor,

First, let me start by declaring how proud I am to be a Jamaican. Even though I now reside in America, I feel I was privileged to have had a great childhood, being raised in a one of a kind culture and country. I can still remember my childhood days just like it was yesterday; climbing trees, playing hide and seek, stucky, and many other activities with friends and family. We cared for each other and we were taught how to love and share. Oh, if I could do it all over again.

It is however with extreme disappointment that I acknowledge that it's indeed a new era and that things and times have and will continue to change. Less and less time is being spent ensuring that our children learn and conform to our traditions.

I strongly believe that our traditions have played a very important role in raising our children. Nowadays, however, advanced technology has replaced our children's play and social time. Our children have become antisocial and introverts more often because they do not know the importance of interaction. That tradition has been quickly replaced with tablets and smartphones, which is affecting behavioural patterns.

Additionally, their morals are at risk. Children have easier access to the Internet and to sites with all sorts of content. Supervision is difficult and they may be exposed to pornography and prohibited matter. What they watch and listen to these days sure does have a huge impact on their behavioural patterns and ethical development.

We all need to get back to the way we were in bringing up children to safeguard our traditions and morals. Yes, we can embrace technology and development, but we must hold on to providing a true Jamaican childhood to the next generation.

Danette Mahabeer

danette.mahabeer@gmail.com

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