My parents are moving and while going through some things, my mom found this short article she had cut from a local newspaper dated November 23, 1959. It makes you realize just how far we have strayed from common sense parenting.
Here it is, in its entirety:
The Police Department of Houston, Tex., is distributing a leaflet entitled “Twelve Rules for Raising Delinquent Children.” The New Era is reprinting the article in full, as a public service:
1. Begin with infancy to give the child everything he wants. In this way he will grow up to believe that the world owes him a living.
2. When he picks up bad words, laugh at him. This will make him think he’s cute. It will also encourage him to pick up “cuter” phrases that will blow off the top of your head later.
3. Never give him any spiritual training. Wait until he is 21 and then let him ‘decide for himself’.
4. Avoid use of the word ‘wrong’. It may develop a guilt complex. This will condition him to believe later, when he is arrested for stealing a car, that society is against him and he is being persecuted.
5. Pick up everything he leaves lying around–books, shoes, clothes. Do everything for him so that he will be experienced in throwing all responsibility on others.
6. Let him read any printed matter he can get his hands on. Be careful that the silverware and drinking glasses are sterilized, but let his mind feast on garbage.
7. Quarrel frequently in the presence of your children. In this way they will not be too shocked when the home is broken up later.
8. Give a child all the spending money he wants. Never let him earn his own. Why should he have things as tough as you had them?
9. Satisfy his every craving for food, drink, and comfort. See that every sensual desire is gratified. Denial may lead to harmful frustration.
10. Take his part against neighbors, teachers, policemen. They are all prejudiced against your child.
11. When he gets into real trouble, apologize for yourself by saying, “I could never do anything with him.”
12. Prepare for a life of grief. You will be likely to have it.