I was listening to Radio 4 this morning and there was an interesting item about how our children are brought up.
The aggressive pursuit of personal success by adults is now the greatest threat to British children, a major independent report on childhood says.
The report, called The Good Childhood Inquiry and commissioned by the Children’s Society, concludes that children’s lives in Britain have become “more difficult than in the past”, adding that “more young people are anxious and troubled”.
According to the panel, “excessive individualism” is to blame for many of the problems children face and needs to be replaced by a value system where people seek satisfaction more from helping others rather than pursuing private advantage.
My point of raising it here is the effect that a good interviewee can have with well chosen words. It is rare that I remember exact phrases hours after the event. But this morning a man used these three phrses in his responses:
1. The third parent, the television.
2. Day orphanages (meaning nurseries).
3. Confusing pleasure with happiness.
All of them are short and snappy but carry a bit of an emotional message. A very effective technique if you want to get people to understand your message.
On a personal note, it got me thinking: our television is not a replacemenent parent; the nursery we used to use was an introduction to all manner of great things; aren’t pleasure and happiness often the same thing?