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The Good and Bad of America’s Continuing Cultural Revolution – Part 7/7

I found two easy solutions that may help eliminate or reduce some of the bad habits of America’s Cultural Revolution that have plagued the United States since the 1960s—poor diet and damage caused by the self-esteem movement.

The first solution comes from the 25th Anniversary Edition of The Costco Connection.

In Being Bob Harper, The Costco Connection asked, “Is how you eat today different from when you were growing up?”

Harper’s answer was yes. He said, “I had to reprogram how I ate and what I ate from how I used to eat.”

In addition, Harper said, “People don’t like change. People get nervous when they have to actually look at themselves…” However, “we have a lot of bad habits that simply have to be broken.”

Harper’s advice is to drink lots of water at each meal. He describes a real breakfast as oatmeal (I suggest steel cut oats), eggs (one a day and not fried) or plain Greek yogurt, doctored up with berries and nuts, apples and berries every day along with other fibrous fruits…

In fact, WebMD lists foods that Boost Your Mood and Energy Level. For example: apples, avoid sweets while eating whole grain and whole-wheat bread; cashews, almonds and hazelnuts; Brazil nuts, salmon, leafy greens, fiber, water, and fresh produce.

Traverse Bay Farms also says, “Bananas are one of the world’s finest foods for supplying fuel energy.”

Harper says, “If I had to place it on a priority list, nutrition would be number one and exercise would be number two.”

The second solution that may help reverse the damage caused by the false self-esteem parenting method comes from a book I read years ago, which I used to guide me through changes in my lifestyle to rid myself of a few habits I did not want.

What To Say When You Talk to Your Self by Shad Helmstetter, Ph.D. was released in hardcover in 1986. Parents and want-to-be parents are urged to follow the advice in this self-help book and change those bad habits that might lead to raising children with an inflated, false sense of self-esteem so they do not grow up to be narcissists eating a poor diet and valuing fun over merit.

In fact, Helmstetter’s advice may help people change an unhealthy lifestyle so exercise and healthy food become a daily routine—a healthy habit.

The book’s description on Amazon says, “You don’t have to be crazy to talk to yourself! We all talk to ourselves all of the time, usually without realizing it. And most of what we tell ourselves is negative, counterproductive and damaging, preventing us from enjoying a fulfilled and successful life. Shad Helmstetter’s simple but profound techniques, based on an understanding of the processes of the human brain, have enabled thousands of people to get back in control of their lives (it worked for me). By learning how to talk to yourself in new ways, you will notice a dramatic improvement in all areas of your life. You will feel better and accomplish more. It will help you achieve more at work and at home, lose weight, overcome fears, stop smoking and become more confident. And it works. Helmstetter is a bestselling author of many personal growth books, and the leading authority in the field of Self-Talk.”

“What to Say When You Talk to Your Self” also comes as an audio version. If you buy a copy, listen to it a few times before you start improving your life and the future adult life of your child or children.

Return to The Good and Bad of America’s Continuing Cultural Revolution – Part 6 or start with Part 1

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga.

To subscribe to “Crazy Normal”, look for the “E-mail Subscription” link in the top-right column, or click on the “Following” tab in the WordPress toolbar at the top of the screen.

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The Good and Bad of America’s Continuing Cultural Revolution – Part 6/7

Once Americans left the farm where they grew and ate their own food without it being processed and turned into pop tarts and cheese puffs chased down with a 64 oz. Coke, the quality of the American diet went into a nosedive at the same time that the US needed its population eating a healthier diet due to the growing need for a literate, educated workforce.

There is a benefit that comes from eating a healthy diet that helps a child/teen earn a proper and better education.

The WSIPPA report said that high school graduates earn 24% more money over their lifetime than non-high school graduates and it is estimated that high school graduation reduces the chance of future adult criminal activity by about 10%.

In fact, the US Census Bureau in 2010 reported that the median earrings for full-time, year-around workers aged 25-64 by educational attainment was about $35,000 annually for high school graduates (that median is about $10,000 less for drop outs), almost $56 thousand for people with Bachelor’s Degrees and almost $70,000 annually for Master’s Degrees. A professional degree earns a median of almost $102,000 a year.

According to Wise Geek, “A professional degree is generally a college degree that allows you to work in a certain profession. There are some types of employment that are not open to people without a professional degree. For instance you can’t be a doctor, a nurse, a physician’s assistant or nurse practitioner without obtaining the appropriate degrees first. In most cases, some fields require a professional degree before you can even be considered for hire in your chosen career.”

As you can see, for most Americans, working hard to earn an education pays for a lifetime.

If America wants its public schools to improve, parents must do their job first and feed their children’s brains proper nutrition, make sure the child sleeps nine or more hours a night and shuts off the TV weekdays and limits TV on the weekends while limiting social networking Internet time to one day a week for an hour or two at most.  And lock up the video games, the MP3 players, the iPods and there is nothing in the Declaration of Independence or the US Constitution that says a child has to have a mobile phone.

So, ignore the blame game—the attacks on teachers unions and the anti-public school propaganda from politicians and media pundits such as Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh, which are misleading, avoid the truth and are a danger to America’s future.

Do you believe that feeding children a poor diet that has too much sugar and bad fat in it will lead to higher earnings and good health when those children are adults?

If you said “NO” to the previous question, there is a solution, a way to change the situation—to turn a bad aspect of America’s Cultural Revolution around. If you said yes, then you are a lost cause and possibly an Internet Troll (a narcissist) with a brain that was damaged by a poor diet and lack of exercise.

Continued on June 10, 2012 in The Good and Bad of America’s Continuing Cultural Revolution – Part 7 or return to Part 5

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga.

To subscribe to “Crazy Normal”, look for the “E-mail Subscription” link in the top-right column, or click on the “Following” tab in the WordPress toolbar at the top of the screen.

 

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The Good and Bad of America’s Continuing Cultural Revolution – Part 2/7

An example of America’s continuing Cultural Revolution was reported on ABC News: “The mother of an 8-year-old Arizona girl who was presented with a “Catastrophe Award” for apparently having the most excuses for not having homework believes her child was humiliated by her teacher.”

So what!

When you scan the comments for this ABC piece , many sound like these, which I copied and pasted from the ABC News piece:

  1. “Where has this MOTHER been? why hasn’t she been      aware that her daughter hasn’t been doing her homework? Why is she going      on t.v. to complain about this issue?”
  2. “The mother wasn’t aware that her daughter had a      problem with homework? Maybe she should have gone to a parent/teacher      conference or two. But no. She goes on TV to cry and complain. At least we      know where the daughter gets her talent for making excuses.”
  3. ” It is not the teachers responsibility to have a      child do homework.. it is the parents! If a parent is having trouble      taking time in the evening to help her child than she needs to hire a      tutor.”
  4. “The mother should be more aware of what her child      is doing at school……I’m sorry but kids have homework every night maybe the      mother should go through her back pack once in a while. I’m so sick of      parents no being responsible for their children’s ACTIONS!!!!!”

As you can see, it is obvious that this mother was not doing the best job she could but she is not alone. In fact, she represents the average American parent as you shall discover. If you are reading this, I hope you are not one of those average parents.

Liberty.edu says, “Overall, most findings have shown parental involvement, whether at home or at school, have a moderately significant relationship with higher academic achievement, and this relationship has been found consistently across demographics (e.g., ethnicity, sex, or socioeconomic status) and measures of achievement (e.g., achievement tests, grades, and grade point averages). Research points to the conclusion that “parental involvement is an important predictor of children’s achievement in school” (Englund et al, 2004, p. 723).”

In addition, “A 1999 survey of St. Louis kindergarten students revealed that while 95% of the parents rated reading as very highly important, only 16% of the parents were reading to their children each day… .

“Parental involvement tends to diminish as children move to higher grade levels. In 1996 and 1999 surveys, 86% of parents with children in grades K-5 reported attendance at a scheduled meeting with their child’s teacher. Contrastingly, among children in grades 6-8 and 9-12, only 70% and 50% respectively had parents who attended meetings involving their child’s teacher (U.S. Department of Education, 1994).” Source: Parent and Teacher Perceptions of Effective Parental Involvement – A dissertation presented to The Faculty and School of Education Liberty University

 

A few comments criticized the teacher for giving the child an embarrassing award but most were similar to the few examples posted here.

What will it take to educate the average American parent to understand a parent’s responsibilities to raise and educate children?

However, there is another aspect of this topic that is more important than an eight-year-old that earned a negative award for not doing her homework.

Continued on June 6, 2012 in The Good and Bad of America’s Continuing Cultural Revolution – Part 3 or return to Part 1

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga.

To subscribe to “Crazy Normal”, look for the “E-mail Subscription” link in the top-right column, or click on the “Following” tab in the WordPress toolbar at the top of the screen.

 

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The Good and Bad of America’s Continuing Cultural Revolution – Part 1/7

One could argue that America’s transformational Cultural Revolution started in 1861 at the start of the American Civil War which ended slavery in the United States in 1865.

In addition, the way the average American parent raises his or her children today, and how the public schools operate and the character of the average American child are all affected by this continuing revolution.

Several significant changes track this Cultural Revolution and metamorphosis—some good and some bad. After all, America’s leaders and citizens are only human. To understand this ignored revolution, one should know a few facts about US history first.

Good changes are in bold print showing improvement.

If the print is gray, the change is questionable.

If in italics, it means BAD things happened!

1. In 1800, about 6% of the US population lived in cities and more 94 % lived on farms and/or small rural communities. By 1990, almost 70% of the rural population had migrated to cities.  This change took place due to the US Industrial Revolution (1820 – 1870), and America needed more educated citizens.

2. In 1850, life expectancy by age in America at birth was 38.3 years. By 1900, life expectancy at birth reached 48.23. In 1990, it was 72.7, and by 2012 (according to the CIA Factbook, life expectancy for all races and both sexes had reached 78.49 (ranked #50 globally).

3. Although critics of public education harp on the so-called low high-school graduation rates in the US, in 2007 the national graduation rate was almost 70%. However, to put this into perspective, in 1870, the high school graduation rate was less than 5% and by the turn of the century in 1900, thirty years later, only 7%. Forty-five years after that at the end of World War II, the rate was up to 55%. It wouldn’t be until 1970 that we would see the highest graduation rate at 76%.  After that, it leveled off and hasn’t changed much and fluctuates a few percentage points up or down.

4. The Chinese Exclusion Act was signed into law on May 6, 1882. This act was one of the most significant restrictions on immigration in U.S. history and focused on all Asians.  The act also affected Asians that had already settled in the US before it became law.  This Act would not be repealed until December 17, 1943—sixty-one years later.

5. The 19th Amendment was ratified on August 26, 1920 establishing a woman’s right to vote. This movement started in 1848 and took 72 years to achieve.

6. For more than one-hundred-and-sixty-two years, Children in the United States could be sold by their parents into servitude to work in coal mines and factories up until the Fair Labor Standards Act in 1938, which set federal standards for child labor.

7. During World War II, 120,000 Japanese-Americans lost their homes and businesses when they were rounded up and sent to dozens of prison camps where they languished until the war ended (February 1942 – 1944; the last prison camp closed in 1945.)  This act was challenged in the courts but the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the U.S. Government.

8. In 1948, President Truman signed Executive Order 9981 ending segregation in the US armed services: “”It is hereby declared to be the policy of the President that there shall be equality of treatment and opportunity for all persons in the armed services without regard to race, color, religion, or national origin.”

9. From roughly 1950 – 1954, McCarthyism was the practice of making accusations of disloyalty, subversion or treason without proper regard for evidence. During the McCarthy era, thousands of Americans were accused of being Communists or communist sympathizers and became the subject of aggressive investigations and questioning before government or private-industry panels, committees and agencies. This movement was so popular that 50% of the American public supported McCarthy’s vigilante witch hunts.

10. On July 2, 1964, President Johnson sings the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  It was the most sweeping civil rights legislation since Reconstruction prohibiting discrimination of all kinds based on race, color, religion, or national origin.

11. The Spread of American Imperialism: the war with Mexico (1846-48) where the US seized New Mexico and California; the US Indian Wars (1865-1891), which cost the lives of about 19,000 white men, women and children, including those killed in individual combats, and the lives of about 30,000 Indians; in the Spanish-American War (1898) the US gained Guam, the Philippines and Puerto Rico; Philippine-American War (1899-1902); Banana Wars (1898-1935); Moro Rebellion in the southern Philippines (1899-1913); Vietnam War (1955-1975), and the Iraq War (note: this is not a complete list). In addition. to maintain this empire, according to the US Department of Defense, the US military maintains 662 foreign sites in 38 countries around the world. Other sources claim that number is more than 1,000.

Now, just as America need smarter people, the average US citizen is going in the other direction from dumb to dumber, and this change is a continuation of the American Cultural Revolution that has been taking place since 1861.

However, this revolutionary change has to do with how the average parent raises his or her children, and it had its roots with John Dewey in 1886. It would take 82 years for this negative element of America’s Cultural Revolution to reach critical mass when by the late 1960s self-esteem was a fashionable and influential idea and that movement, which spread to the schools by the 1980s  led to grade inflation, an end to rote learning in addition to dummying down the curriculum.

Continued on June 5, 2012 in The Good and Bad of America’s Continuing Cultural Revolution – Part 2

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga.

To subscribe to “Crazy Normal”, look for the “E-mail Subscription” link in the top-right column, or click on the “Following” tab in the WordPress toolbar at the top of the screen.

 

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