Judgment car hijackers, ruthless managers and, of course, all manner of COVID-19-related follies have made 2021 a year to be remembered – or perhaps forgotten – for parents, children and those still sane. ‘mind of us. (There are some left, right?)
1. The Mask Disorder in Massachusetts
In March, three freshmen at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst were suspended for the remainder of the school year for the unspeakable offense of attending an off-campus party and not wearing masks – in outside. The mother-of-one said, “It’s like putting someone on death row for their first speeding ticket.”
The students appealed and lost. They did not even get reimbursed for their tuition fees. This is how they ended up at the top of this list.
Meanwhile, on the road, Amherst College told students they had to wear not one but two masks indoors – a precaution so excessive that it actually contradicted guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( CDC), which advises people not to wear more than one disposable mask at a time.
2. Hey lazy mom, you suck
Yet another man yelled at a lady for leaving her child in the car as she ran into the grocery store for two items. But this guy was particularly upset, because she was ruining her working day. As a car thief, he was going about his business, stealing his car and leaving, when he noticed the damn baby and had to turn around and bring it back. On the bright side, at least it gave the guy a chance to tell the mom how irresponsible she was before he raced away in his car.
3. Welcome back, now go
In November, even before the omicrom attack, nearly 10,000 schools announced new days off – for the whole of Thanksgiving week, in some cases – with only a day or two of warning. Reasons ranged from teacher shortages to fatigue to mental health, but for whom? “We all feel like we are witnessing the death of public education up close and personal,” a mother told NPR, as on the particularly liberal public radio station. Times, they change.
4. We will leave a light on (in your prison cell)
Shaina Bell of Youngstown, Ohio, was arrested for leaving her children, aged 10 and 2, in a motel room while working nights at a pizzeria. Cops have sentenced Mom to jail on two counts of endangering children because Bell can certainly better watch her children behind bars. But there is good news: When the story came out, a GoFundMe raised $ 165,000 to help the family.
5. Pickup from school to the prison pipeline
Elsewhere in the annals of single motherhood, when 10-year-old Braylin Harvey was arrested seven minutes late at a Chicago public school, the school reported her mother, JaNay Dodson, to the Children’s Services Department and to the family for neglect. The principal sent JaNay an email saying, “I am sensitive to the challenges of balancing work and family responsibilities, however, all school employees are… required to follow CPS protocols.” How empathetic does that sound?
6. A can opener of worms
After John Roderick’s tweets about getting his daughter to figure out how to use a can opener went viral, a dozen people reported a “bean daddy” to child welfare services. A social worker came out and interviewed the nine-year-old girl, learning this dark family secret: What she liked least about dad is that sometimes he gets tired of playing Legos faster than him. ‘she. Despite this overwhelming fact, authorities decided to allow Roderick to continue living with his wife and children. (He stopped living on Twitter.)
7. Fair, fat and four
A study of more than 400,000 American children aged 2 to 19 found that “sharp increases in BMI rates have occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic … and young school-aged children have experienced the most significant increases ”. The CDC speculated that the reasons were increased stress and screen time, as well as decreased physical activity. Perhaps forcing children to be alone and indoors for months can have its downsides.
8. FDA: Fear and terror?
Because there simply weren’t enough things to do this year, the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) warned Americans: “An alcohol-based hand sanitizer in the eyes can cause pain. serious injuries. Serious? How? ‘Or’ What serious? Over the course of two and a half years, the agency counted 3,642 “injuries,” which meant not blindness but eyes turning red or itchy, as they do when almost any liquid gets into them. The agency’s busy beavers have also studied the dangers of hand sanitizer fumes, finding an average of five “adverse events” per year, or 1 in 66,000,000 people. Then they also issued a press release about this danger. “These are the same people who could not approve a home COVID-19 test for a year,” reflected the former New York Times science writer John Tierney.
9. No commendation for this child
Students who had returned to Haddon Township High School in New Jersey were evacuated in January, even as hazardous materials crews rushed to the scene. A bomb threat? Anthrax? A strange new variant? Worse! On January 4, a sophomore brought to science a quarter-size piece of Fiestaware, the Colorful Plates from the Depression era. He wanted to see if the color red, once made of uranium oxide, was radioactive. His teacher was excited. But a few days later, someone at school said it was a biohazard. (These are the same plates that millions of Americans have eaten for decades.) When six emergency vehicles, flashing lights, confronted the student, his experiment can be said to have been successful: he had discovered that the plate indeed caused a kind of over-reactivity.
10. How dare these boys play outside
Nevada doctor Daniel Hansen was at work when his sons, aged 8 and 10, asked their mother if they could play at their end of the game. Mom said yes, and they left, until a neighbor called 911 to report two unsupervised children. The firefighters rushed to accompany them timidly home. The men apologized, then added that they would report the family to law enforcement. Dr. Hansen’s mother, MP Alexis Hansen, did not need to be pressured to co-sponsor Let Grow’s Childhood Reasonable Independence Bill in the Nevada state legislature. The law ensures that parents who let their children do “reasonable” things like playing outside cannot be accused of neglect unless they put the children in obvious and probable danger.
The bill passed in Nevada House with bipartisan support, stuck in the Senate. But it continued all the way to Oklahoma and Texas. These became the second and third states to follow the lead of Utah, which passed the country’s first free parenthood law in 2018. Now, one-tenth of America’s children live where the right to freedom. independence is guaranteed to them.
This coming year, Let Grow hopes to pass similar bills in Colorado, Nebraska, and South Carolina.
Stay tuned and wish us good luck: 2022 could be a much better year for the Free-Range Kids!