Steve G.

A Teachable Moment

In Civil Liberties, Libertarian, Personal Responsibility on September 11, 2008 at 8:24 pm

This evening I was giving my sons (who will be four in two weeks) a bath. I was half-listening to their conversation while I read “Radicals for Capitalism” nearby. When I went in, they were playing some game that involved their toys going to jail. Conversation ensued:

ME: Why are they going to jail?
MILES: They work at jail.
ME: Oh. Do you know what jail is for?
PORTER: No.
ME: Jail is a place where, if you are bad or the government thinks you are bad, they come and take you and lock you up and you can’t leave. Sometimes it’s for things that are actually bad, like hurting people or taking things from them. But sometimes it’s for doing things the government doesn’t want you to do, like doing certain things with your body, or for criticizing them.
PORTER: Did you ever go to jail?
ME: I got arrested once because I did something bad [driving severely drunk, which is what got me to wise up and stop drinking] but no, I’ve never been in jail.

A few minutes later, I heard Porter say something disparaging about “the government”.

  1. Excellent parenting.

    I think you’re into Unschooling. Is that true? Have you considered Classical Education? I know it’s the opposite of Unschooling, but sometimes (like in politics) opposites are quite similar in some regards.

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