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Is politics healthy for children?

By HailChina! (blog.chinadaily.com.cn) Updated: 2014-11-24 14:00

I grew up in a low socioeconomic family and as a young child I became very interested in politics because I was worried about my family being poor and feared that government had the power to make them poorer. In my opinion politics is not in any way healthy for children and especially not good for the health of poor children.

I was a kid in the 80s and I would peruse the Sunday papers before reading the comics. I would watch the evening news before the sitcoms. When I would read about or hear about proposed changes that political parties were putting forward, I would worry about the possible strain they would have on my parents' budget. One of the things that scared me the most was the GST (goods and services tax ). When I was in primary school I knew that the names of the NSW Premier, the Prime Minister, the opposition leader and leading politicians from the two parties. The worst time was an election because politics uses fear to sway voters. Fear was used to scare people about the proposed GST when I was a child. The current government in Australia today seeks to increase the GST and just like when I was a child, the debate is generating fear within the electorate. Prime Minster Tony Abbott has called for the GST debate to be "calm and rational" and I fully agree.

Watching too much news can damage your health is what Google search says and I agree. If watching too much news is unhealthy for adults, then imagine what it is doing to our children. 

There was no point in me worrying about the GST when I was a child because there was nothing that I could do about it. You can blame my parents for being low in the socioeconomic scale but that does not change the fact that 'news' is unhealthy for children and especially poor children. If I was growing up in a wealthy family I suspect that I would have been far less concerned about the GST and far less interested in politics.

In my opinion young children need to be protected from politics because it can cause them incredible amounts of psychological stress. I do not think politics is age appropriate for children until at least late high school.

Politics is unhealthy for children, especially poor children.

The original blog is: http://bbs.chinadaily.com.cn/blog-972492-24452.html

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