TODDLERS LOVE TABLETS AND SMART PHONES, DON’T DESERVE THEM : A CALL TO ACTION FOR UNCLES AROUND THE WORLD

If there’s one thing kids love, it’s a cavity inducing amount of candy. If it’s two, it’s candy and watching other kids play with toys on YouTube. WTF? I don’t know but if you hang out with a child born in the last six years for more than 20 minutes, you’ll see it’s true. They cannot LIVE without a tablet. How did this happen? Let me explain by dropping an often used but totally appropriate analogy: the screens are crack and our world’s future is filled with screen crack babies. The problem is much like a real crack baby, the phone addiction is now being passed down genetically. They’re already addicted because their parents are. Hell, they probably exist because their parents swiped right on their phone. And then a year or two later, when this scion of bleeding eyed screen junkies falls out into the planet, what else should we expect? That this kid is going to “read books” or “play outside”? Ha. Yeah right. Worse yet, the parents, as legal guardians and sole care providers, have to be around this child constantly and have no choice but to be enablers because if they lost their screen privileges, their kids would literally never STFU about it. No one is masochistic enough to listen to a child cry all the time to prove a point over the Nickelodeon App. And so, who is left to fight this crusade of dragging children’s eyes away from pale glow of an iPad screen? Why the uncles of the world, of course! From Teddy Roosevelt to Uncle Buck, it’s a time honored tradition for uncles to step up and get those kids active when the parents could not. And it’s important now more than ever. Is it because that’s what’s best for the health of these kids? Okay, sure. Yes. But really, it’s more about the fact that these spoiled brats don’t deserve how AMAZING a phone or tablet is for entertainment. When I was a kid, I wouldn’t have even been able to wrap my head around the concept of mobile entertainment. “Hey kid, one day people will essentially have a TV and an arcade game in a device the size of your Eggo, but with mind blowing sound, video and graphic quality?” “Oh really? Sounds cool except I don’t know what any of that means because I’m 3.” With this generation, you don’t have to explain anything. The tech just EXISTS for them like it’s been around since the beginning of time. Even though relatively speaking, it has for them. But that’s no excuse. I spent a large portion of my childhood down at a “crik” for entertainment. That’s right. A GD “crik.” Not even a “creek.” ‘Cause that’s the type of place I’m from. And I’d love to sit here and tell you that I was so much better off, but really my campaign for this screen detox is out of pure jealousy. The “crik” sucked, and I would’ve much rather spent it watching other people play Pokemon GO in the comfort of my own home. So, they shouldn’t get to do that all the time now because they can. You can’t argue with that. Don’t let my selfish motivation sway you away from acknowledging a clear national need: uncle time.

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