Childhood Lessons



Like most children, I was relegated to the back seat of our family car with my siblings when traveling. I remember the squabbles: “he/she touched me,” “did not, did too,” “not my fault,” “he/she did it,” etc.

I learned early these statements led to parental responses that were very “uncomfortable” for me/us. More importantly, I learned when I attempted to avoid responsibility for my actions, or if I tried to blame another, my parents were having none of it. Those lessons were critical because they taught us to be responsible whether we were innocent or guilty.

My parents never favored any of us by granting individual exemptions or special treatment. We were treated equally and the rules (laws) were enforced without regard to our age, gender, needs, desires or circumstances. We learned to get along even when there were disagreements. We learned name-calling and blaming were the tactics of children, not adults.

As I watch politicians in Washington and beyond, I often question if they ever rode in the back seat as children.

Jim Hinton


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