Monday, July 14, 2008

Yuk! I am 3 years old and I am a racist. So deal with it.

When I was a youngster I did not like Chinese food. The kind my parents served me was loaded with soya sauce, a sauce that to this day I still do not like. It also looked funny, with little stringy, wormy-looking things, and it was all mashed together with other unidentifiable bits of food. I don't recall having bad thoughts about Chinese people. I just didn't like the taste or the appearance of their national cuisine. I have since learned to love Chinese food, stringy bits and all.

My 3-year-old granddaughter will not eat a piece of toast or a sandwich unless the crust of the bread is removed. Where she obtained this dietary preference is a mystery, since nobody in our family does this.

When my younger son was three he went through a phase where the only meat he would eat was chicken. When I was barbequeing the meat, he would walk up to me, look down at what was cooking on the grill, and ask me what was for dinner. Of course, I would answer "chicken", his face would light up, he would say "good" and go back to what he was doing. I would then flip the steak, pork chop or bratwurst, or whatever (even occasionally chicken) over on its other side to ensure even cooking. He would eat every morsel of these thinking it was chicken.

The point is that little children develop peculiar eating preferences which they shed when they get older, as a rule. Everybody knows this. Well, maybe not everybody.

In what has to be political correctness gone mad, a govenment-funded child advocacy agency in the U.K. has issued a 366 page guidebook to childcare workers, called Young Children and Racial Justice, alterting them to the danger of racisim in young children. It advises that children who say words lik "nigger", "paki", "darkies", "smelly", etc. should be hauled up short and corrected. Fair enough.

However, it goes on to suggest that if a child turns up his/her nose at some spicy ethnic cuisine, by saying "ugh" or "yuk" that is evidence of a racist attitude. I have to assume that the people who wrote that have never raised children.

Further, it advises that such incidents should not just be dealt with by the field worker at hand, but should be systematically reported to a higher authority.

That could be very dangerous in Canada, because we sometime seize children from homes where parents are exposed as racist when it gets reported to the authorities.

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