The lesson from a children's movie

I LOVE the movie “The Incredibles”. It’s great for the kids, it has enough adult humor so I can stand to watch it a million times consecutively, and it also has some important ADULT lessons. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, please do!

I love the line where Dash is being reprimanded by his mom in the car. Elastigirl (his mom) tells Dash that "everyone is special". What does Dash retort with? "Which is another way of saying nobody is". How true. It seems today that too many parents think their children are "special". Of course our children are special to US, but lets face the facts, they may not be to the rest of the planet. Unless your child can skip levels in school, find the cure for cancer, or some other fantastic talent that no other child has, your child is average, maybe even below!

Here's an example: While I love my stepsons to death, they just finished a visit this past weekend where they told me they had C's on their report card. AND, without shame! I thought, it's like they are bragging they're average! I had to explain to them that it's worth bragging that they have A's and B's, because that means they are better than the norm, that they should not be proud of C's, because it means that they accomplished nothing special. Thankfully none of them had below a C, because I feel that kind of grade is inexcusable. I view a "C" grade as room for improvement, that the child is more than likely spacing out in class. That's where a parent stops thinking they are "special" and puts their nose to the grinder to bring that grade up to a B or an A. Where's the shame? I cried if I had an A- in elementary school! The boys repeatedly state they want to live here, and while I tell them they are more than welcome if their mother would let them (NOT), I told them that I am a different mom, and that I would not allow C's in my house. They seem ok with that (until it were to actually happen, I'm sure, lol).

There's another part in the movie where Elastigirl is fighting with Mr. Incredible, over Dash. When it some to the part where Dash is moving from the 4th to the 5th grade, Elastigirl says Mr. Incredible needs to go to his "graduation". Mr. Incredible responds with "They keep inventing new ways to celebrate mediocrity!". Right on! Children need to feel loved, but they also need to know that they need to work at becoming recognized in a crowd. It doesn't just happen! Like my son who constantly tries to show me what he is eating at that table, I always tell him "Why would I want to watch you eat?". Yes, he's a good boy, but I certainly do not need to praise him for eating something that I expect him to eat without drawing attention to himself. But, there are some parents out there that I have no doubt bring out the camera and take pictures of this "accomplishment". What does the child learn from that? I don't think anything. Maybe I'm wrong, but it doesn't go that way here.

Syndrome is the "bad guy" of the movie. He doesn't have super powers, but he tries desperately to counter that by inventing. In the end, he still can't match up to the "Supers", because he isn't one. There's a line where he says he's going to sell his inventions after he's had his fun, to make everyone "super". Then: "And when everyone's super, no one will be". Ok, that's sooooo liberal. It reminds me of the "If I can't have it, no one can", and that ONE person, who is NOT as good as the others, ruins it for everybody, just for his own selfish reasons.

Get a grip liberal moms! Most likely, your child is nothing "special". He's probably not the next Benjamin Franklin, or President Reagan, so stop putting them on that pedestal, because you are really only setting them up for failure. You're children need to be loved and treated special within your own family. They need to feel special for being in a family unit, or for honestly trying to improve that C grade to an A. Children are not automatically "special". What does that teach them when they become adults? How will they handle rejection when they find out that someone "better" got that job, or the girl? If you teach your children to work hard at what they want, and teach them that the reality of life is that there is someone always "better" than they are, I think it will help them have a realistic view on their life. They will be better equipped for life's dealings then the children that grew up thinking being "average" made them special. Sorry, but some of these people need to read up on Nietzsche's writings, if not to wholly believe them, but at least gain a perspective.

Liberals need to stop changing the definition of special. Learn a lesson from the movie.

Posted by Lisa Zeimetz at May 10, 2005 10:58 AM