Children will listen

In his musical “Into the Woods,” Stephen Sondheim penned a telling song called “Children will listen.” The song advises adults to watch what they say and do as children will be listening or watching. Here are few lyrics from the song:

Careful the things you say
Children will listen
Careful the things you do
Children will see and learn
Children may not obey, but children will listen
Children will look to you for which way to turn
Co learn what to be
Careful before you say ‘Listen to me’
Children will listen

I could not think of a better song to advise the leading Republican presidential candidate about his abusive and divisive words. Not only is his manner, actions and words of division, name calling, bullying, and lying, very unpresidential, they represent precisely the behaviors we teach our children not to do.

It will be much harder as parents who support this man to then tell their children this is not how to behave. But, Mom and Dad, Donald Trump does it and you seem to like it when he does. It will also be harder on us other parents to teach our children when they see these actions on the news and the resulting reactions from followers, protestors and fellow candidates.

To further my point, the close to an open letter written by an eight year old boy to Trump said, “I hope to grow up to be a better person than you are teaching me to be.”

As an American, I ask that Mr. Trump resign from his campaign. His malevolence is creating less dialogue and more shouting at each other. We do not need this in our country, in general, but certainly not in our leader. It is certainly not the answer to WWJD and it is not what our children should witness.

28 thoughts on “Children will listen

    • The good sign is Kasich won and Rubio dropped out. Not winning Ohio, may leave Trump short of the majority. Cruz is a horrible alternative and some respects worse a candidate as he believes his own BS. If the GOP wants to remain a party, then they need to rally around Kasich. Yet, Trump is indeed the favorite for the GOP nomination.

  1. How did we get from Hope & Change to Fear & Anger? How did I get from being risen to my feet after Obama’s speech at the DNC to silently shaking my head on a daily basis at what is being spewed? I know these answers and that just disappoints me even more.
    At this point, that kid is looking like the best choice of all!

    • Lisa, I think it starts with people getting their news from biased or unreliable sources. Our country is doing pretty well, but does have issues. Yet, with zero sum game politics, one side says everything the other side does is wrong and only their ideas work. So, the bad gets exaggerated and the good gets downplayed. This president has done a much better job than the GOP gives him credit for, but not as good as Dems acclaim, e.g. Thanks for your comment, Keith

    • Erika, it does give pause. We Americans are so uninformed, in part because we don’t pay attention, but in part because of where we get our information. So, many do not know we are doing pretty well and many don’t know this candidate is lying 3/4 of the time, on top of his divisive and dangerous comments. Please share with your American friends how concerned people outside of the US are abut Trump’s winning. Much of what he advocates would be harmful to our planet and people within and outside of the US. Thanks for your support and any help you can offer. Keith

      • Erika, thanks. You have taught your son well. All three of my kids voted in the primary this week, which is the first time with my daughter turning 18. Keith

      • Oh, I did not even have to teach him. A behavoir like Trump shows it is a no go in our circles. I just said to my son that I never wished more for a female president than this time!

      • Erika, no female US presidential candidate will have as a high a hill to climb than this one. Ironically, she will have the most notoriety and goodwill worldwide than any president candidate given her Sec of State and First Lady roles. Keith

      • A female journalist said I hope she wins and finishes her presidency. She said Clinton will continue to take grief throughout her presidency.

      • Yes, absolutely. I often think of that. The country could have progressed so much more if he only did have support. Obama has been very appreciated over here from day one on.

    • Kim, I know this is a pipe dream, but it needs to be said. There may be a new meaning to the word “trumping” in the future. It will mean excessive lying and demonizing to win an election. Thanks, Keith

  2. Note to Readers: I was watching a powerful performance by the talented Audra MacDonald as she portrayed Billie Holiday in a bar as she struggled with her demons. She sang a powerful version of “Strange Fruit.” I have written before of this song which describes the strange fruit swinging in the trees which are tortured and hanged African-Americans during the Jim Crow era. I must confess I thought of Donald Trump and our return to racial bigotry that he is leading of a tangible number of his followers. That makes me sad and angry.

  3. Children will listen….Keith, as you and Mr. Sondheim rightly point out. But I doubt if Mr.Trump will take the refrain to heart when he has a man to man with his young, Baron.

    I don’t want to pop the clutch of commonsense child rearing and a call for everyday decency here, but I do share some harmony with F.Scott in thinking “the rich are different from you and me.”

    While I might be humming the wrong tune, I think The Donald feels the rules of social engagement apply, only as much as they might serve, to give the great unwashed a reason to bath so as to be more presentably when bowing to their betters.

    As Mr. Trump has made robustly clear, both in theory and practice, those who seek to rule must be wiling to engage, and utilize, or for that matter, alter or simply ignore any and all given societal norms when one pursues, acquires, or holds power.

    I doubt Keith, if Mr.Trump will be swayed to temper his long running strategic understandings, no matter how show stopping a show tune might be.

    The lights are dimming Keith. What do ya think. Are we watching The Great White Way pushing back against the nation’s first black President, and using race to stage a power play to usher in authoritarian anarchy?

    Or is that just too over the top?

    Really enjoy your take on it all…….Keith.

    ——–and a book to consider ———-

    • Doug, you are correct that these words are lost on The Donald, especially with his narcissistic bent. There was a study conducted by the U of Toronto and U of Cal- Berkley whose results surprised even them. The conclusion is the more wealth you had, there was a 2 to 4 times greater likelihood that you would cheat than others. Even when the money was play money in a rigged Monopoly game, the person who ended up with more money became more dictatorial.

      As for this backlash of the great white way, the demographics do not work in their favor in the future, so they may want to rethink that superiority complex. Good comment, Keith

  4. Obviously the Dumpster doesn’t give a good dog damn about how people speak and think, as long as they vote for him. Then once he’s in, he’ll be free to lower the boom as he did repeatedly in business (as evidenced by his “entertainment” show, The Apprentice.) At least, that’s the way he sees the picture. I can’t imagine why people adore a man who would throw them under the bus w/o a second glance. Dellusional.

    • His fanatics have been led down a path with many promises he cannot possibly do. Make the sale is what he is doing and he doesn’t care about the fallout. He sure has our allies worried, rightfully so given his lack of global awareness and divisive language and name calling.

      • What blows me away is that his “believers” have SEEN his quick temper and lack of empathy right there in front of their faces. What about them makes them believe they will not suffer the same fate as his “apprentices?”

      • Linda, I agree. What is the old saying, if someone puts others down in your presence, that is a pretty good indication they are doing the same about you when with others. It is not hard to find examples of why he should not be president. Keith

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