Remembering a generation with a work ethic….


Today is Holocaust Remembrance Day. To most people it’s just a regular Sunday. To some, it is a time to remember the atrocities and survival that their grandparents generation endured.

I am always amazed to hear about some of the holocaust survivors who made their way to America with nothing, having lost in the war their spouse, their children, their siblings, their lives as they knew it . As young survivors they had to start over again and rebuild a life for themselves. I can only imagine the loneliness, the loss, the nothingness that they felt when starting again. Yet they endured and with preservation they built themselves businesses and some amassed great wealth and experienced incredible success. They had nothing to lose, no excuses or reasons for procrastination and they just did what they had to do to survive.

We are the third generation from the holocaust period. Look how far we have come.

Or have we?

I am humbled when I listen to stories of children of the great depression who went without food for weeks at a time. I am saddened when I read about unemployment and how some people have just given up looking for jobs in lieu of being handed food stamps or unemployment checks. It is as though this generation has a sense of entitlement that they refuse to accept a position they consider “beneath them” on the rung of the corporate ladder. I ask myself, do people actually WANT to work? Where has the work ethic of the generation prior disappeared to ?

Which brings me to the obesity issue (yet again)….

In my opinion obesity is not an epidemic it is part of the lack of work ethic this generation has become accustomed to. Kids just don’t want to work at playtime. They have grown accustomed to sitting in front of their DS games. Even cars have dvd players because G-d forbid a child has to drive more than 20 minutes without TV .

We are an instant gratification nation. We send an email or a text and immediately get a response. We are addicted to devices and technology that perpetuates the immobility problem our kids experience.

While I understand that it is no longer safe to send your child out by themselves to ride their bikes to their friends house by themselves, I do think it is the parents responsibilities to provide a safe experience to just play outdoors.

You don’t need to spend money on private gymnastic lessons to provide your child with the opportunities to do flips. Take them outside. Take your kids to the playground. Take away their DS and their wii. Make them run circles in the backyard or kick the ball around.

And why do we feel we have to always pack snacks for them??? Are our kids really going to starve without a fruit roll up 30 minutes after lunch?

I pray that we never have to experience the loss or pain of war the way our grandparents did. But I think there is an important lesson to be learned from that generation that went without.

Coddling our kids and providing them whatever they desire may not always be a good thing. Give them chores even if you have someone else to do them, so they can feel the sense of accomplishment one gets from earning their allowance. Teach them to eat when hungry and to appreciate what is on the plate not take it for granted.

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