Sunday, August 7, 2011

Morbid Nursery Rhymes...

My kids were complaining to me that I don't let them watch Kick Buttowski on TV (because I think it's stupid).  I explained that any cartoon where the sole focus is farts, burps, butts, or other bodily fluids is not to be on their TV docket.  And I also reminded them that because I'm such a fantasy monster freak, they actually get to see quite a bit of unusual TV that most of their friends DON'T get to see (My mom showing them the movie "Alien Vs. Predator" is a story for another time!).   But today, my mind wandered to the old nursery rhymes (who even knows why!) and I realized that MANY of them are freakishly morbid and disturbing!  Seriously!  They need some kind of rating system!  Just take a look at these...

Three blind mice... three blind mice...
See how they run... see how they run...
They all ran after the farmer's wife... who cut off their tales with a carving knife...!!!
Um... I don't care for mice running around my house, blind or not, but I certainly don't want to be hacking at them with a large knife!  Yikes!

Peter, Peter pumpkin eater,
Had a wife but couldn't keep her;
He put her in a pumpkin shell
And there he kept her very well.
Apparently Peter's wife didn't get that restraining order in time...

Ring-around-a-rosie... pocket full of posies
ashes... ashes... we all fall down!
Yeah... this little diddy refers to all of the dead people rotting after The Black Plague... let that keep you warm at night!

Rock-a-bye baby... on the treetop... When the wind blows... the cradle will rock.
When the bough breaks... the cradle will fall...
And down will come baby... cradle and all!
Where is 241-KIDS when you need it?  These parents put the baby's crib up in a TREE for cryin' out loud!

There was an old woman who lived in a show.
She had so many children, she didn't know what to do!
She game them some broth... without any bread,
Then whipped them all soundly... and sent them to bed.
Ahhhhh--- good times in that household!  Despite the fact that this family lives in an area worse than the slums, the over-wrought, apparently-single mother BEATS all of her kids each night.  I'm sorry... who thought these were good stories for children?!!

I did a report in college about the effects of television on children.  I was bummed to see that in numerous sources, my all-time favorite childhood cartoon, Tom & Jerry, was often called out for it's gratuitous violence.  Apparently every 7 seconds, there is an act of violence in each episode.

I don't think I'm as worried about this anymore-- because if my kids aren't phased by the terrifying nursery rhymes told to them as toddlers, they can probably handle Tom smacking Jerry with a frying pan!  But they're still not watching Kick Buttowski... b/c that show is just stupid!