One of the things my daughter enjoys is listening to CD's while we drive. My car doesn't have a DVD player in it (I know, the humanity), but I've never found that to be an issue as she has always been perfectly content listening to her music. Her father and myself, we miss our music. But we tolerate hers because she enjoys it. Some of it is even kind of good. A lot of it, however, is just down right disturbing.
The Mister came to me the other day with this proclamation: "I am thinking about throwing out that CD we've been listening to with The Nugget. It has come to my attention that no less than five animals, maybe six, lose their lives during the course of CD."
I can't disagree with him here. Dying animals doesn't seem like such an awesome theme for children. I mean, yes, animals and all living things do eventually die. I'm just not sure that's a topic I want to explore with my child on the way to, say, the zoo or her grandparents' house.
One of the songs which was in The Mister's line of fire is a song about some pigs who "go oink, oink, oink". Evidently the author of this song feels pretty strongly that the pigs "ought to go wee, wee, wee, wee." So strongly, in fact, that said oinking pigs end up dead as a result of their refusal to stop their oinking and join in the weeing. It is my (admittedly rudimentary) understanding that a pig's natural instinct is to oink. It goes against their nature to say wee. I am aware that in the "This Little Piggy" game a pig does, in fact, say "wee wee wee all the way home", however, I am going to go ahead and call this an exception to the rule. My point being, why are we killing pigs for displaying their own natural behavior?
And while we're on this topic, just because you have a sweetly voiced adult or a child singing something, that doesn't make it children's music. I am confused as to how the song "Darling Clementine" has worked it's way into this genre. Has anyone ever listened to the words? SHE'S DEAD, PEOPLE! I mean, yes, it's a love song, but it's a mournful love song about how Clementine drowned and he is unable to save her. Is this really the kind of mood we want our kids steeped in? If I decide to record a CD of children singing songs like Metallica's "Enter Sandman" and Marilyn Manson's "Sweet Tooth", does that make it children's music or just really freaking creepy? Are we just going by the titles here, or what?
I guess we're just lucky that we dropped the practice of playing music for The Nugget before she fell asleep when she was only a couple of months old. I can only imagine if she were falling asleep to some of this stuff. I feel scared just thinking about it! I am sure we would be waking to screams over dead pigs and drowning women.
I suppose the people we really ought to be mad at are the recording studios or record executives who release this music. After all, artists are often known to be limit-pushers and the population is general is filled with the mentally ill and perverse. So I have to blame the gate holders for not barring the door a little more tightly to those who would ask for access to our children.
I would be remiss, as well, if I didn't accept some responsibility as a consumer. I can shirk some off on the fact that nearly all of our children's CD's were gifts. I can also say that, based on the fact that they were CHILDREN'S CD's, I thought they would be okay. Finally, the fact that songs about murder and mayhem are sandwhiched between classics such as "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" and "I'm a Little Teapot" does not exempt me from my basic parental role as protector of my child. The fact that I assumed based on titles alone that the songs would be appropriate for my two year old does nothing but, as the saying goes, make an ass out of u and me. Or mainly me.
Anyway way you put it, I see no alternative other than to come up with a complicated rating system for all children's music. I will form a coalition! The coalition will petition congress! We will take back our children's innocence one song at a time!
Or maybe I'll just hit fast forward.