Against all odds, since the 1960s, the average Asian-Americans parent (including Chinese-Americans) held on to traditional parenting methods more in line with the Old Testament and old-world values.
Why is this?
Nicholas D. Kristof, writing for the New York Times, says, “Perhaps as a legacy of Confucianism, its citizens have shown a passion for education and self-improvement — along with remarkable capacity for discipline and hard work, what the Chinese call “chi ku,” or “eating bitterness”.
In Time magazine, Amy Chua said, “‘I know some Korean, Indian, Jamaican, Irish and Ghanaian parents who qualify too.’ The tiger-mother approach isn’t an ethnicity but a philosophy: expect the best from your children, and don’t settle for anything less.”
Where does all this lead?
Well, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, Asian-American adults are much more likely to have bachelor’s degrees than whites or blacks.
In 2003, 49.8% of Asian-Americans over age 25 had bachelor’s degrees, compared to 27.6% of whites and 17.3% of blacks.
Also according to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2008 Asian-Americans had per-capita incomes of $30,292, whites had per-capita incomes of $28,502, and blacks had per-capita incomes of $18,406.
For thousands of years starting well before the birth of Jesus Christ, old word values, as defined by the Old Testament, guided parents and there was a reason for that.
There’s an old saying that there is “nothing new under the sun”.
Some will argue that were no jet planes, cell phones, laptop computers, fax machines, and mp3 players during ancient times.
However, the saying that “nothing is new under the sun” refers to the intangibles of life as defined by human behavior, not specific inventions and gadgets. The reason why most parents around the globe (such as Amy Chua) still raises children using old-world values was that time proved those methods worked best while rejecting what didn’t work.
In the 1960s, when the “average” American parent rejected those old-world parenting values for the soft, self-esteem building approach to parenting, they turned their backs on what worked best for millennia.
Return to Recognizing Good Parenting – Part 7 or start with Part 1
Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).
His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves
Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).
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