We are in a crisis state, no doubt about it. Whether we talk about education, economics, violence or employment, our youth are in trouble. The experts say, that for the first time ever, the current up and coming generation (millennials) will do worse than the outgoing generation (Boomers). Well, what does that really mean?
Maybe we start with the education crisis. According to data from the National Center of Data Statistics. U.S. 4th graders are struggling with competency in reading, math and science, with ratings of less than 50%, 50% and 40% in those subjects respectively. It doesn’t improve significantly with our 8th graders with competency levels below 60%, 60% and 40% for those subjects at that grade.
So what does all of that mean? In essence, our 4th graders and 8th graders are roughly less than 50% competent collectively when you look at the top 3 subjects. Now, let’s be clear, I’m not an educator nor will I pretend to have a well established point of view of the education system. However, I have a myriad of questions I hope to engage this audience in over a period of time. For now, let’s start with:
As Christians, Parents, and citizens, what should we do knowing that a large population of our children are failing and at risk?
I don’t have that answer. However, I will tell you my position. I believe my role, as co-owner of Holy Culture and stewart of Corelink Radio are to provide you with insights as we look to uncover what I like to call “the influencers.” The things that youth are faced with – – empowering you, as parents, guardians and gatekeepers to make an informed decision about what you allow your children to partake in.
Parents have an unenviable position of having to constantly determine what to allow their children to be influenced by: Personalities, Tv shows, Movies, Institutions, Video games, Social Media….and the list goes on and on. Further, its even more difficult, when many things that are labeled “for children,” such as some of the TV networks, provide programming that is clearly not child friend (that’s another article in and of itself). This naturally forces the parent to have to monitor things pretty closely.
As an aid for parents, as it relates to music, we’re creating an “Influencers Chart”. This chart tries to provide you with a balanced (albeit Christian biased) view of popular songs. We have essentially reviewed the lyrics (which are really meat of the matter) and scored them into the most relevant themes such as reference to drugs and alcohol, destructive language and the promotion of the degradation of women.
Take a look at the below as an example, Kendrick Lamar’s “Don’t Kill My Vibe” and weigh in. Is this a fair approach? Helpful or not? What should we add to it? and of course, I’d love to know your thoughts on the topic overall.
Grace and Peace