Old-fashioned toys, not video games, best for kids, pediatricians say | WRCBtv.com – Chattanooga

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Don’t be fooled by all those “educational” electronics in stores. What’s best for your kids, pediatricians say, are old-fashioned toys that require you to actually interact with them.

Source: Old-fashioned toys, not video games, best for kids, pediatrician – WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

“Play is important for child development, but children learn best from adults. They get language skills, learn about how the world works, and get feedback that can reinforce learning and positive behavior, the American Academy of Pediatrics says in new guidelines for people buying toys for kids.”

The most amazing part of this is that, apparently, it comes as a surprise to some people!

The AAP cautions that

“a little common sense goes a long way, the AAP says in its reminders. Kids need to use their imaginations, they need to move both their hands and their bodies and they need to express creativity. Simple toys such as blocks, crayons and card games can fill these needs better than the flashiest video game”

And goes on to add,

“The truth is most tablets, computer games, and apps advertised as ‘educational’ aren’t. Most ‘educational’ apps target memory skills, such as ABCs and shapes,” the guidelines read.

“These skills are only one part of school readiness. The skills young children really need to learn for success in school (and life) include impulse control, managing emotions, and creative, flexible thinking. These are best learned through unstructured and social play with family and friends.”

So-called educational games and apps on digital media may, in fact, delay social development [emphasis added], especially for young children, because [such technology] interferes with their learning about real-life facial expressions and gestures.”

When it comes to screen time, less is more:

“Parents also need to remember to limit kids’ use of video and computer games, the AAP says. ‘Total screen time, including television and computer use, should be less than one hour per day for children 2 years or older and avoided for those younger than 2 years of age,’ the guidelines point out.”

That was the rule in my growing-up years, when “screens” meant television. I may have chafed at it, at the time, but (with the perspective and, hopefully, maturity that age brings) I recognize the wisdom of the restriction, now.

Caveat emptor! “Some products may be marketed in a way that makes parents feel their kids are missing out if they don’t get them. Don’t fall for it, the AAP says.” Oh, really? Do ya think? Gee, I didn’t know that corporations ever marketed their products in ways that over-state their benefits and minimize their risks… *wry smile*

In any case:

Read the whole article – there’s a lot more information, and it’s all interesting, especially to those who care about the social and physical, as well as intellectual and psycho-emotional, development of children.

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March for Life: Amazing Turnout and Resolve to Stop Abortion | TFP Student Action

Source: March for Life: Amazing Turnout and Resolve to Stop Abortion | TFP Student Action

I occupy what I suppose some might consider a “moderate” position on the abortion issue, in that I believe abortion should be safe (to protect the life and health of women, in the event that it is medically necessary – and yes, that does occur, at times), legal (to ensure that it is safe), and rare (because the taking of a human life should always be a last resort, never ever a first option – and abortion should never be considered a form of birth control). I am resolutely opposed to the reprehensible calls by those on the extreme left for abortion “on demand, without apology” – and expecting the government (and thus, the taxpayers) to fund it.

On the subject of “my body, my choice” – frequently touted by those advocating the pro-abortion position – this is obviously false on its face: a fetus may depend on the woman’s body for its survival, prior to a certain stage of gestation, but from the moment of conception it is clearly a distinct individual, having its own individual genetic makeup (combining genes from both parents), and its own distinct, individual development.

“My body”? As one recent photo of a pro-life poster (which I wish I could find; I apparently failed to save it) put the matter, “since when do we think a woman has four legs, four arms, two heads, two hearts, and two different sets of genes?” It is not (just) a woman’s body; and therefore her sovereignty over it is a shared sovereignty: shared with the father of the child, and with the unborn child itself, who from the moment of conception is a child not only of his or her human parents, but a child of God.

Therefore it is with encouragement and optimism that I greet reports that the March for Life in Washington, DC, which occurred on Friday (18 January 2019) was reportedly the largest to date, with a turnout that may have been as high as 300,000 – many, if not most, of these being young people. Those on the Left who think that time is on their side, that all they have to do is wait for all the “old fogeys” to die off, may be unpleasantly surprised by the conservatism of the rising generation!

These young people have seen the failures and consequences of the “Me Generation,” and of the failed political and social experiments of the Left since the 1960s, and in many cases, want none of it. Indeed, it seems that we are seeing the beginning of a serious and growing backlash… thanks be to God.

The Vocation of Motherhood… and Fatherhood, too.

The text that goes with this picture is a bit hard to make out, so here it is:

“Remember motherhood was God’s plan for women, not men. We all forget that motherhood is the norm and a career is abnormal. Some are compromising and urging our good high school girls to colleges and careers. Mother Teresa’s words are so enduring to our times when she said that, ‘God calls us to be faithful, not successful.’ Anyone who wishes to debate Mother’s words should pray to God for grace and insight to understand these words of wisdom. These words are especially true for the mothers of our day and time. Many mothers are so wrapped up in the ‘media success’ of these times that they see nothing wrong with going out to work. Very few mothers ‘have’ to work outside the home and it is to the detriment of family life.”

—Rosie Gil

As I wrote in response to this at the time, I agree – but I also think we sometimes forget that it was God’s plan for fathers to be at or near home most of the time, too, unless they were on a journey for the benefit of the family, or fighting to protect it.

Whether farmers – as were the majority of people until quite recently in human history – tradesmen, or merchants (the latter two of which usually had their shops or offices downstairs, with the family residence upstairs), most men spent most of their time in relatively close proximity to, and often / usually working together with, the rest of their family, right up until the Industrial Revolution.

I am not trying to detract in any way from the vital role and vocation of motherhood, or the desirability of mothers being able to devote themselves full-time to that vocation, if at all possible, and to the closely allied one of homemaking – literally, creating a home that is worthy of a family to live in.

I am simply pointing out that I believe God’s original plan was for families to be organic, integrated units of relationship, with all members working together for the common good, and supporting one another in daily living – not mom and kids at home, and dad working somewhere else, a long commute away, and only seeing them in the evening and on weekends.

The 1950s, as idyllic a time as it was in some (though not all) respects, was neither the norm nor the ideal, either – nor, certainly, were the “dark, satanic mills” of the Industrial Revolution. We have fallen a long way from the original plan, imho, in many respects!

QOTD: “We want a Europe based on its three hills…”

“We want a Europe based on its three hills: Acropolis, Capitolium and Golgotha. Hellenism, Rome and Christianity. An alliance of sovereign states against foreign enemies, terrorism and illegal emigration, with low taxes, rebirth of national production and motives to families to make more children.”

— Failos Kranidiotis, of the Greek nationalist and populist party Nea Dexia (the New Right)

Source: New patriotic Greek party wants higher birth rates and to protect Europe from Islamic colonisation – Interview

Globalism (which has both a sociopolitical and a corporate element) and cultural Marxism are strong, and firmly entrenched in the political, social, and academic elites of the West. The “long march through the institutions” has been, in many ways, all too dismayingly successful. But now, at long last, there is a real push-back.

People are beginning to see that, in the memorable image of Hans Christian Andersen’s story, “the Emperor has no clothes.” Or perhaps one should say, if the globalist / cultural Marxist “emperor” does have clothes, they include the jackboots of totalitarianism!

In any case, nationalist and populist sentiment is growing, and political parties with a nationalist and populist orientation are either springing up (like Nea Dexia) or finding new inspiration and expression (like the French Rassemblement National) with increasing vigour. Popular movements such as the Gilets Jaunes (Yellow Vests) are another manifestation of the same trend.

It’s as if the antibodies in the blood of the West have finally detected and begun to react against the disease that has been afflicting it for so long! Those of us who have been watching with both sorrow and anger the agony of the West’s long self-immolation find this a refreshing and hopeful development, and one inspiring cautious optimism.

And I find this motif of the “three hills” of Europe to be a powerful image. Granted, one of them (Golgotha) is not actually in Europe! But anyone who doubts the impact of Christianity on the development of Europe, and its right to be include as one of the core pillars of what was, after all, known as “Christian Europe,” or “Western Christendom,” is simply not paying attention.

It has long been understood – and only quite recently come into question, by those who seek to disassemble the West entirely – that Classical Greece, Ancient Rome, and Christianity are the three pillars or wellsprings of traditional Western culture. The philosophy, art, and literature of Greece, the legal, administrative, and military ability of Rome (and the political insights of both), and the spiritual, moral, and social teachings of Christianity have, between them, defined the West for millennia.

Remove any of the three, and we are left with something less that EVROPA.

Without wishing in any way to minimize the important (indeed, vital) contributions of my own Celtic and Germanic forebears, Europe – and thus, the West! – stands or falls on the Three Hills. It is on them that we must form our shield-walls, and from them that we shall begin the Reconquest of our culture and heritage from those who seek to destroy it.

90% of plastic polluting our oceans comes from just 10 rivers | World Economic Forum

Workers clear garbage at the bank of Yangtze River in Taicang, Jiangsu province, China, December 23, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. EDITORIAL USE ONLY. CHINA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN CHINA. - RC1EC841D900

The world has become increasingly alarmed at the amount of plastic in its oceans. But where does all this plastic waste come from?

Source: 90% of plastic polluting our oceans comes from just 10 rivers | World Economic Forum

Here’s a hint: not from us.

Not if by “us” is meant the United States, or the West in general.

Plastic in the ocean is a major problem. As this article points out, “more than 8 million tons of it ends up in the ocean every year. If we continue to pollute at this rate, there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean by 2050.”

That is not just hype, and it is not something we should take lightly, especially if we care at all about this good Earth and its future (not to mention our future, on it). But here’s the thing: plastic straws in California – or anywhere else in the U.S. – are not the problem. We are not, by and large, the problem.

That’s not to say we couldn’t be doing a better job of disposing of (or, preferably, recycling) our plastic waste than we are; but for the most part, we’re not doing badly. So where does all that plastic waste come from?

Asia, primarily, and Africa.

According to the World Economic Forum, and recounted in the linked article and elsewhere, 80% of the plastic waste that makes it into the world’s oceans gets there via ten rivers: eight of them in Asia (including the storied Ganges and the Indus in India, and the Yangtze and Yellow in China), and two (the Nile and Tiber) in Africa.

Interestingly, this story came out this past summer. But how much attention has it received from the mainstream press? Little to none. Continue reading “90% of plastic polluting our oceans comes from just 10 rivers | World Economic Forum”

Jordan Peterson provides a little perspective on “the patriarchy” and “male dominance”

Dr. Peterson is a controversial figure, no doubt about it; but he frequently says things that are worth listening to. This is one of those times.

Update: The original clip I linked to seems to have disappeared. Instead, I am linking to a Daily Wire article which features a link to the full-length interview. Here is a transcript (from that post) of the section I highlighted in my original post:

Peterson takes on [GQ interviewer] Lewis’ claim that western civilization is still a “male-dominated society.”

“Our culture confuses men’s desire for achievement and competence with the patriarchal desire for tyrannical power. And that’s a big mistake,” says Peterson (comments start around the 4:00 mark). Lewis uses this comment as a jumping off point for the discussion of Peterson’s arguments against the modern feminist concept of the patriarchy as a “male-dominated society.” When she asks him to define what he means by patriarchy, Peterson responds with a question: “Well, in what sense is our society male-dominated?”

“The fact that the vast majority of wealth is owned by men, the vast majority of capital is owned by men, women do more unpaid labor…” Lewis replies.

“That’s a very tiny of proportion of men,” Peterson interjects. “A huge proportion of people who are seriously disaffected are men; most people in prison are men; most people who are on the street are men; most victims of violent crime are men; most people who commit suicide are men; most people who die in wars are men; people who do worse in school are men. Where’s the dominance here, precisely? What you are doing is taking a tiny substrata of hyper-successful men and using that to represent the entire structure of Western society. There’s nothing about that that’s vaguely appropriate.”

I agree.

But Lewis isn’t ready to give up. She goes on (this transcript is lightly edited from a Red State blog-post),

[Lewis] “But I could say equally that most rape victims are women.”

[Peterson] “You could say that… but that doesn’t provide any evidence… of a male-dominated patriarchy.”

[Lewis] “But there are almost no women who rape men…”

N.B. This is not entirely true, by the way! A recent (2017) article appearing in Scientific Ameican, among others, notes that “the CDC’s nationally representative data revealed that over one year, men and women were equally likely to experience nonconsensual sex, and most male victims reported female perpetrators.” But back to Lewis and Peterson:

[Peterson] “Well, yes…but that doesn’t mean that Western culture is a male-dominated patriarchy. The fact that there are asymmetries has nothing to do with your basic argument. This is a trope that people just accept: Western society is a male-dominated patriarchy… No, it’s not. That’s not true.”

Indeed. The fact is that, while some “asymmetries” or inequalities may remain, there is not and probably never has been in history a society in which there is more equality between the sexes than in the modern West. I am sorry to put it so harshly, but anyone who fails to realize that has blinders on.

Now, one can argue, and some have, as to whether or not this often-enforced “equality” (if the modern West is dominated by anyone, it is the “liberal” Left, and its ideological presuppositions and agendas) is necessarily and always a good thing! But the idea that we are a male-dominated patriarchy simply does not bear scrutiny. That is a straw-man created to further the Left’s desire for still more and greater power.

Read the articles, watch the video, and draw your own conclusions!

“For The Ladies” (and Gentlemen) | Be A Southern Gentleman

Source: Be A Southern Gentleman – For The Ladies (and Gentlemen)

Stephen Clay McGehee, a good friend of The Anglophilic Anglican, writes on his excellent blog “Be A Southern Gentleman,”

“Over the years, I have received several emails from ladies wanting tips on how and where to find a Southern gentleman. Southern gentlemen are few and far-between in today’s society, and ladies who want what marriage should be, who want a husband who will honor and cherish her and treat her like his queen, will be looking for a way to meet them. That is exactly how it should be, and those Southern gentlemen are certainly looking for those same Southern ladies. There is no magic formula to make this happen, but perhaps we can pass along a few ideas that may help.”

I am myself seeking a Southern lady – although I would be open to one from another geographic region, if she shared the same attributes and values! – and so I found this very interesting. Perhaps others may as well.

modest-yet-alluring
English actress Hermione Corfield demonstrating how it is possible to dress tastefully and still look attractive, even alluring.

Stephen sketches out general categories such as “Networking,” “Outward Appearance,” “Activities,” “Manners, Etiquette, and Lifestyle” (the first two, in particular, seeming to be almost unknown – or at least, held in little esteem – in today’s world), and includes “A few other notes.” I particularly liked his penultimate comment in this section:

“If all of this sounds too submissive or weak or ‘Goody Two Shoes’ for you, then do yourself and Southern gentlemen a favor and realize that you are not a good match. Southern gentlemen and ladies are both quite rare. There is a reason for that.”

Of equal interest (to me, anyway, being a gentleman rather than a lady) to Stephen’s original blog post is the response from a self-described “single lady” named Nancy, who describes “some of what I look for in a man, as a potential husband/partner.”

What is especially interesting to me is that among the ten characteristics she lists as being important to her, being a “ripped hunk with abs of steel,” or being a multimillionaire, do not make the list.

So what does she look for?

She does (understandably) seek someone who leads “a basically healthy lifestyle,” and who is “neat, clean, and tidy” (“Are his cloths neat? Does he wear anything beyond t-shirts and sweat pants? Are his hair, mustache, and beard neatly trimmed? Does he have good hygiene practices?”) – but assuming she is being honest in her assessment, she’s not looking for a superman or a movie star.

Instead, she seeks characteristics like “Does he have a pleasant sense of humor? Is he comfortable in his own skin? How does he treat me? Does he seem concerned about my happiness and welfare? Does he have anger issues? Is he ‘father material’?”

These, with the rest of her list, are characteristics that a young woman might profitably consider, as she seeks a man – and which a man might profitably seek to foster, if he seeks a decent, respectable, and worthy woman to be his sweetheart and eventual wife.