Last weekend my family and I drove down to Saint Paul for the MN High School Hockey Tournament festivities. I grew up in MN and have played hockey my entire life. The weekend of the state tournament is one of the highlights of the year for me, and each year it gets more and more enjoyable as my children enter into the excitement of it all.
One tradition we have is visiting the Hockey Expo. At the Expo hundreds of vendors set up booths showing off the latest and greatest equipment. They also have loads of giveaways and freebies that the kids enjoy filling their bags with. In addition to all this there are opportunities to shoot pucks, stick handle, play around on fake ice, and do all kinds of other hand-on activities. The entire thing is free and it's a great time.
The only blemish on the event was a song that I heard blaring from one of the vendor booths. I was at a stick-handling exhibit and a popular song was being played very loudly right next to my kids and I. The lyrics to the chorus are:
So what we get drunk?
So what we smoke weed?
We’re just having fun
We don’t care who sees
So what we go out?
That’s how its supposed to be
Living young and wild and free
My wife and I were blown away that such a song would be playing in an auditorium filled with high school kids and families. Luckily we made it out without having to explain to our kids what it means to get drunk and smoke weed. But the whole experience has been weighing on my mind since. I heard the song on local radio last night and couldn't help but think:
Is there any wonder why our kids in Northfield and other communities are having so much trouble when the lessons popular media gives them is that being young is all about getting drunk, doing drugs, and acting young, wild and free!
My wife is a teacher and I hear stories all the time about interactions teachers have with students who have taken the message of wild and free to heart.
Our society has become such a moral mudhole that I'm not surprised by the way things are; it just makes me sad. The teenage years that are supposed to be preparing kids for adulthood are being ruined by TV and music and other messages (condoned by absent, ignorant, naive, or permissive parents) that tell them life is all about them and their present pursuit of pleasure.
I'm interested to know if you think I'm off base. Do you think I should be less concerned that our middle school and high school kids are having the gospel truth of Wiz Khalifa (lyrics to entire song mentioned above) drilled into their heads?