Sedentary youths – we reap what we’ve sowed

It was encouraging to see the good turnout at last Saturday’s Boy Scout field days at the county fairgrounds. While not proof positive that some of our youths will become avid outdoorsmen, It did show that there’s sufficient interest once exposed to the many outdoor opportunities available to pique youthful interest into getting outdoors and partaking in some form or another. In recent years there’s been national concern that our youths are becoming increasingly sedentary. The reason, of course, can be found by simply looking at our national lifestyle. Let’s consider how we, as a nation, have changed over the past half century

Fifty years ago, home television – if there even was one – often was limited to two maybe three channels. No color TVs, no cable or dish reception, no DVD recorder/players, and TV programming was limited to around 12 hours each day, with a test pattern being shown when no programs were available. There were no Ipods, cell phones and few fast food drive-ins. Kids ate breakfast at home, walked or took the bus to school, and ate supper with their family in the evening. The time from when school ended until supper was often filled with all sorts of makeshift outdoor play time, be it ball games, cowboys and Indians or whatever.

In most families, the father was the bread winner and mom was home. There were few sexual predators to worry about, and drugs were something you took when you were sick. Schools had dress codes and teachers were allowed to discipline unruly students, followed by a notification to their parents (which often resulted in further disciplining at home).

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