BEING A ROLE MODEL
Most adults take very seriously their role of giving children guidance and protecting them. This is a big responsibility and if not done with care children can suffer a lot. We adults are responsible for all children, not just our own. Children learn so much simply by watching how adults behave and where their priorities are. It’s not always so important what adults say, but it is always important what adults do.
In times of conflict, children often are the first to suffer – and they suffer horribly. In the 1960s and early ’70s the US sprayed toxin over much of South Viet Nam. Now, more than 30 years later children are being born with terrible handicaps because of that dioxin. They suffer, not from anything they did, but from what adults are ready and willing to do when angry and afraid.
We need to be more careful. Our violence against each other, for whatever reason, impacts children severely and will affect the way they grow up and the way they work to build the society. If they grow up with positive role models and witness positive ways of solving conflicts and working out differences, they will probably imitate those actions in their early youth and further develop them in their adult years. Our socities and our world will benefit from such positive behavior. But if they witnesses us slandering each other, using violence (verbal, psychological or physical) to respond to things we do not like or agree with, allowing our anger to dictate our way of life, or showing disrespect against person who is different or even unlikable, they will develop the same skills. In this way, violence does simply create more violence. But we must remember that the opposite is also true. Kindness creates more kindness and that is what our world really needs.