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Etan Thomas Headshot

20 Parenting Questions

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1. The Sandusky case created a shock initially, then the media moved on to the next story but am I the only one who wants to make sure that this pervert spends the rest of his life behind bars? If we cannot as a society protect our children, then what good are we?

2. Is there an age limit on Facebook? I heard one little girl at my son's school who couldn't have been more than 10 years-old telling another little girl to Friend her on Facebook so she could follow her updates. Shouldn't there be an age requirement?

3. Why is it that whenever a school shooting or some other tragedy happens in the schools in the suburbs, there is an incredible amount of attention given but the decades of bloodshed in lower economic area schools go virtually ignored?

4. After the movie The Hunger Games, there were scores of white people who were actually upset. Apparently, after reading the book and all of the emotion they felt toward the main characters, they were outraged to discover that the characters were actually black? So they wouldn't feel the same emotion for the loss of black life as they do for white life?

5. I guess that was the point in the movie A Time to Kill where Matthew McConaughey told all of the jury to imagine that the girl was white, then and only then did they view it as horrible. I know this is not an accurate representation of how most white people think, but are there a lot of white people who even in 2012 actually think like this?

6. I saw a clip where Governor Jesse Ventura was advocating the return of corporal punishment in Minnesota schools. In his words, "I was paddled as a boy, and it didn't hurt me. It was just humiliating." Does he really think public paddling is the answer to all behavioral issues with kids in school? Why is society so focused on punishment without finding out the root cause for the behavior, or do they simply not care?

7. What is the rationale of suspension from school? Doesn't that amount to a vacation for most kids?

8. I accidentally gave my son Malcolm my daughter's Princess and the Frog cup and he said, "Daddy I can't drink out of this, it's for girls" and seriously was not interested in drinking it. He would rather have gone thirsty then drink out of his little sister's cup. Was it really that serious?

9. My son Malcolm asked me if the smoke from my incense had the same negative effect to people's lungs as cigarette smoke. He also said he didn't understand why anyone would choose to smoke cigarettes when there is so much information about how bad it is for them. Isn't it amazing that a 6 year-old can have such a clear understanding of that, but so many adults don't ?

10. How much funnier is The Cosby Show once you actually have kids? It is one of our favorite shows in my house, and I have seen all of the episodes before growing up and over the years, but when you actually have kids and can relate, doesn't it just become 10 times funnier than it already was?

11. How cute was little Rudy Huxtable ?

12. Can you believe Rudy Huxtable is now 34 years-old? Goodness, time flies with child actors and actresses.

13. Isn't it amazing how persuasive kids can be and how they can change your entire routine and how you feel no longer matters, but it becomes all about them? I tried to tell Imani, "Listen, Daddy is too tired to play with you. I'm a free agent this summer and I'm working out and trying to get my wind back so I can work out for these teams, and daddy is tired." She hit me with the "sad-little-girl-daddy-manipulation" eyes and said, "But daddy, you promised that when the big hand is on the 12 and the little hand is on the 4, you would have a tea party with me -- and Princess Tiana and Princess Jasmine and Princess Ariel are all downstairs at the table waiting for us." As you can guess, I didn't take a nap that day

14. I heard a little kid on the plane ask his dad why there are flotation devices at the bottom of every seat on the plane and not parachutes. The dad said he didn't know and told his son to ask the people in charge. So he asked all the flight attendants as well as the pilots. Isn't it great to encourage your kids to not only be inquisitive but to seek answers ?

15. Me and Malcolm were in the food court at the mall and we heard this group of men who happened to be white discussing how one of them was being accused of being racist at his job. He then said that he can't be racist because look at how many black Facebook friends he has. Malcolm being the inquisitive boy he is, asked me what does it mean that he has black Facebook friends? They heard his question and looked at us and I looked back at them shaking my head, and said it means absolutely nothing, but isn't that amazing that the guy actually used Facebook friends as his defense ?

16. Why do they make cribs and little baby strollers, toys, etc. one-size-fits-all as if all babies are the same size? My daughter Sierra is following the tradition of all my kids of growing out of her crib way before she is supposed to. Don't they know all babies are not the same height ?

17. Why do my kids Malcolm and Imani act as if it's a big surprise every night when it's bedtime as if it's not the same exact time every night ?

18. Why when my kids have the opportunity to sleep in, they wake up 10 to 15 minutes later than they usually have to for school?

19. Why is it such a struggle for them to wake up for school, but no problem at all for them waking up for Saturday morning cartoons?

20. Me and Imani were on a date and these people who happened to be black were trying hard to talk to some Hispanic ladies and the ladies didn't speak English. Imani asked me why do they think that if they speak English louder then the people will understand them? And why don't they learn to speak Spanish instead of trying to force them to speak English? Lol I couldn't stop laughing because she was exactly right.