Mt. Vernon Register-News

Opinion

February 15, 2014

Putting fun back in dysfunctional

Gloria’s got a 16-year-old grandchild who dresses like a streetwalker. And her mother, Robin, buys her clothes.

“When the kid is not on the phone, she’s got those little earplugs in her ears. Her brother is 24 and lives in the basement. I think Robin leaves plates of food for him at the cellar door. I don’t think she’s seen him in five years.

“The funny thing is, Robin thinks Amos and I were bad parents — like she’s done such a fine job. I’ll agree that we were not the best parents, but it’s not our job to be the best parents. It’s not a competition. It’s our job just to be the parents. What’s that comedienne’s name? The one who used to be funny. Roseanne? She used to say that ‘if my kids are alive by they time they’re 18, I did my job.’

“Robin thinks I was a lousy parent because I made her say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ and I made her go to school every day and checked her report cards and made sure she did her homework and wouldn’t let her date until she was 16 and I didn’t buy her a brand-new car when she turned 16 and I wouldn’t spend $300 on her prom dress and rent a limousine for her and all her little friends. She sure wasn’t going to raise her kids the way I did.

“No, I didn’t go to every basketball game and track meet, and I rolled my eyes at the thought of a first-grade ‘graduation,’ but I did pack her lunch every day and make sure she had clean clothes to wear. All of which makes me a horrible person. Winner of the ‘Mommie Dearest’ award for fine parenting. What was I thinking?

Text Only
Opinion
  • I signed what? When Dr. Sam said, "You've got the prostate of a 16-year-old," it was hard to keep from beaming. This must be how a woman feels when a complete stranger tells her she has a beautiful baby. Well, maybe not quite. Still, it was hard not to feel proud o

    April 19, 2014

  • Obamacare's winning numbers Obamacare's critics have had a bad week. On Thursday, President Obama announced that 8 million people have enrolled in new health insurance plans through the Affordable Care Act's marketplaces, and a significant portion of them are young Americans. Y

    April 19, 2014

  • The rise of big data: A double-edged sword Debates are raging about whether big data still holds the promise that was expected or whether it was just a big bust. The failure of the much-hyped Google Flu Trends to accurately predict peak flu levels since August 2011 has heightened the concerns

    April 19, 2014

  • Only love can re-make your heart Was Jeb Bush right to insert love into a political debate? Such was the gist of a question I was asked on talk radio in response to the former Florida governor's assertion that some immigrants come into the United States illegally as an "act of love.

    April 18, 2014

  • Stop big tobacco from promoting e-cigarettes The tobacco industry is sharply raising spending on advertisements and other marketing for electronic cigarettes to try to make smoking glamorous again and hook a new generation of Americans on nicotine. We shouldn't let them get away with it. If adu

    April 18, 2014

  • A mental health checkup The country's inadequate mental health system gets the most attention after instances of mass violence of the sort that the nation has seen repeatedly over the past few months. Not all who commit these sorts of atrocities are mentally ill, but many h

    April 18, 2014

  • Your new password: sur**nder Have you changed your passwords since the security flaw known as Heartbleed emerged? Have you made sure they're all long, alphanumeric and randomized? Did you use a unique one for every site -- every bank account, every e- mail address, every music-s

    April 17, 2014

  • Hillary leans on Bill, Obama Recently Hillary Clinton gave what appeared at first to be a rambling and unfocused answer when asked to name the proudest achievement of her four years as Secretary of State. The short version is, she doesn't have one. But Clinton's words make a lot

    April 17, 2014

  • If GOP lost culture war, liberals did, too The "culture wars" have been a feature of American politics for almost a century, but recently a number of commentators have declared their end. Conservatives have lost, swept aside by a wave of enthusiasm for marriage equality and sexualized mass cu

    April 17, 2014

  • Cable guys too slow with Internet upgrade Remember the good-old 1990s, when you could make a pot of coffee while waiting for the screeching dial-up modem to connect to the Internet at a leisurely 9.6 kilobits per second? Two decades later, the average American household's connection is 1,000

    April 16, 2014

Twitter Updates
Facebook
Stocks