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Over at Time.com, Nick Gillespie resists the urge to chuck his TV out the window when he watches the FCC chairman blame the boob tube for the sorry state of America's tots.

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  1. 1/3 of all kids out of shape? I’m sure that’s true and it was true in the Dark Ages when I was a high school kid and we all failed the Marine Corps physical fitness test that JFK had bequeathed to all late 1960’s gym classes.

    Yet, scarcely two years later I was taking abuse lessons from Marine Corps DI’s and somehow managed to pass the same physical fitness test that I’d failed miserably in high school. I guess there’s a lesson there somewhere.

  2. I recall an Onion article several years ago about the ideal video game (from the nanny regulatory perspective). It involved moving nondescript blocks from one part of an empty warehouse to another, and then back. Obviously, we can’t be trusted to deal with the consequences of playing violent video games, and sexual content is even more appalling (recall Senator Clinton’s crusade to remove the BJ from GTA). Interesting games would make us fat, of course, because we’d play them too much. Thus, a game about moving blocks would satisfy everyone by removing all objectionable content (but honestly, would it anger the block moving unions and the people for ethical treatment of blocks?).

    I’m glad the FCC has made this final step with TV. All channels should be forced to play “The Warehouse Block Moving Show” at least four hours a day. It’s for the children.

  3. Yes, TV makes you lazy and stupid. Government involvement makes things even more lazy and stupid.

  4. The solution is obvious. The FCC chairman should look up some of the old back-of-the-comic-book ads that show the bully kicking sand in the wimp’s face. The wimp sends off for the Miracle Muscle Expander Kit and two weeks later he’s king of the beach.

    Run those on TV and watch the problem melt away.

    It’s a much better solution than we used back in the days. Most of our really aerobic games involved toy guns. And today We Can’t Have That.

  5. The solution is obvious. The FCC chairman should look up some of the old back-of-the-comic-book ads that show the bully kicking sand in the wimp’s face. The wimp sends off for the Miracle Muscle Expander Kit and two weeks later he’s king of the beach.

    Run those on TV and watch the problem melt away.

    It’s a much better solution than we used back in the days. Most of our really aerobic games involved toy guns. And today We Can’t Have That.

  6. O if we only had the good old days of children who were in great physical shape.

  7. We chain kids to school desks for 6 hours a day, 3 of which are wasted on useless subjects, then send them home with 4 hours of homework, most of which is nothing but busy work. Yet we blame TV for kids being sedentary.

    When I went to public school in the 70’s, I walked to school (6 blocks). Then I walked home for lunch. Then I walked back to school. Then I walked home. That’s 3 miles of walking every day. But god forbid we have open campuses at schools nowadays. And god forbid we take business away from the bus companies.

  8. Russ 2000:

    There are so many sports activities, competitive and intramural, private clubs, dance lessons, etc, that your statement, IMO, doesn’t hold up.

  9. “You can always turn the television off and, of course, block the channels you don’t want,” he said.”But why should you have to?”

    That’s funny. Why should millions of TV viewers waste a few precious calories each deciding how to operate their telesets when the FCC can do this for them? It’s just so non-green.

  10. Russ, what part of Yorkshire are your people from? 🙂

    When I was a lad, our school put in a new driveway, This moved my front door 90′ closer to school, and within the 1-mile minimum required to get bus service. So, starting with 2nd grade my siblings and I had to at least walk home from school. My Dad usually dropped us off in the station wagon in the mornings. I’d say it was all uphill, but it was the South Shore of Lawn Island, and pretty flat. When I was old enough, I often biked to and from school, especially in those weeks when I had to serve morning Mass. Going to and from the library or the candy store? Bike it. Going to play in the park on the other side of town? Bike it. Newspapers to deliver? Load up the bike. The parentals did not drive us around everywhere. Modern parents would have a coronary if their kids went unescorted to as many places as my siblings, my friends and I got to on our own when we were in grammar school. Heck, my folks would freak out at some of the places we frequented without their permission, once they found out. (Usual form of freak-out: “You went where with whom to do what? Without asking permission first? At least you’ve got some of the sense God gave you. You knew I’d never say “Yes” to that!)

    As for the organized sports alternative kids have today, if it is anything like what I went through, it is no guarantee of any actual exercise. I played 3 of a possible 4 years of Little League, losing one 1 to an injury. The first year I barely played. The second I was the 1st-string catcher. In year-three I moved to the older kids’ league, where I generally caught half the game, and sat out the rest. I also played CYO basketball, but road the pines on an awful team. (Rightly so, as I couldn’t shoot to save my life.) Wearing a uniform and sitting is no substitute for tearing around your neighborhood on your Schwinn, swimming all day at the beach, playing pick-up games of baseball, softball, football, hoops or pond hockey, or just running around like a wild hooligan.

    I will say this about Kids Today. I rarely see a tubby skateboarder. Either that’s because fat kids fall off a lot and get discouraged, or the sk8ers are actually getting a workout.

    Anybody else ever get the “No TV after school” edict, and have your Mom or Dad catch you out when they checked to see if the set you had just snapped off as the family car rolled into the driveway was still warm?

    Kevin

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