I stopped reading the news long ago because I felt it was plagued with what the ‘media thought we should know’, which is usually about celebrities. I’m tired of hearing about celebrities, and too many people are obsessed with celebrity lives instead of their own. When you have to read and gossip about someone else’s life, then that means you haven’t been living your own. But I regress.
Living in Germany, I don’t watch the local news in the States, but I do get Bing highlights when I open my browser. I came across this article about Sesame Street. When I was a child, I couldn’t wait to watch Sesame Street along with Romper Room, and they helped me learn to count and learn my ABC’s.
Because of the overwhelming number of Americans in jail these days, or have been in jail, Sesame Street decided to introduce a Muppet called, Alex, whose dad is in prison. “Alex, who wears a hoodie, gives voice to kids who might feel that they don't otherwise have one.” Take a look at a clip of one of the segments. Adults can learn many lessons from this video.
The idea is great for helping children cope with a life situation they didn’t create. Sesame Street is a wonderful teaching tool for children. Unfortunately, it shouldn't have to teach children about feeling like an outcast because their parent is in jail. It's a time for them to learn about playing well with others, sharing, etc.
This says volumes about where our society is headed. Gone are the days of innocence. Children are bombarded, damaged and bruised by adult actions. These childhood issues cause anxiety and various other psychological problems, and in some cases, children grow up and mirror their parent’s actions.
Since 2002, the U.S. has the highest jail rates. “As of 2010, the rate was 500 prisoners per 100,000 citizens, compared with an average of 100 prisoners per 100,000 citizens in peer countries. Incarceration rates are significantly higher for American blacks and Latinos than for whites.” These statistics are disheartening. America has lost its vision for opportunity and the American dream. I highly doubt anyone who came to America thought prison was a dream. Many people from other cultures came to America to make their dreams come true and succeeded.
All I can say is these ‘new efforts’ from Sesame Street are commendable and depressing at the same time.
Sesame Street and Jail,Bea