Saturday, July 12, 2008
I went out to dinner this evening and, while waiting to be seated, I noticed a couple at a table enjoying their dinner. Also with them at the table was a little girl of about 4, presumably their daughter.
Was this child eating? Was she talking with her parents? Was she listening to them? Was she observing the world around her? No. She was watching a Disney animated movie on the portable DVD player her parents set up for her on the table.
What a sad case of yet another child of the screen. Rather than teaching this little girl how to socially interact, behave at a restaurant, listen or observe, she is learning to be entertained by a screen, while her parents ignore her. Then when she is a teenager they will complain that they have communication issues.
I grant that there are times of use for a portable DVD player. Perhaps on a long drive while on vacation, a break from, "Are we there yet?" is in order. But at a restaurant? What strange behavior, yet is this kind of thing becoming the norm? If so, how sad.