Sunday, December 25, 2005

A kid has a right to be noisy?

This is absolutely ridiculous. Last month, an uproar took place in Chicago over a restaurant owner's sign that said, "children of all ages have to behave and use their indoor voices when coming to A Taste of Heaven." To me that sounds reasonable, but it didn't to some parents who take their children to the restaurant. According to one woman, the sign was akin to telling her how to parent:

"I love people who don't have children who tell you how to parent," said Alison Miller, 35, a psychologist, corporate coach and mother of two. "I'd love for him to be responsible for three children for the next year and see if he can control the volume of their voices every minute of the day."

Of course, this woman is being absolutely ridiculous (and also, what on earth is a "corporate coach"?). When I was growing up, my parents emphasized that if we were in a public place, it was impolite to be loud. Today, it is not uncommon to be in a public place and see parents who let their kid run around and make noise all over the place. The article recounts what the owner of A Taste of Heaven has experienced,
After a dozen years at one site, Mr. McCauley moved A Taste of Heaven six blocks away in May 2004, to a busy corner on Clark Street. But there, he said, teachers and writers seeking afternoon refuge were drowned out not just by children running amok but also by oblivious cellphone chatterers. Children were climbing the cafe's poles. A couple were blithely reading the newspaper while their daughter lay on the floor blocking the line for coffee. When the family whose children were running across the room to throw themselves against the display cases left after his admonishment, Mr. McCauley recalled, the restaurant erupted in applause.

Kids can't act perfectly, but self-entitled parents like the ones in this article need to have much more consideration for the people around them.

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