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Monday, July 25, 2011

Kids vs. Parents or Kids & Parents?

by Saint Mark (bio)

A few General Conferences ago, Elder Robert D. Hales of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles shared a story from his own life. It's an anecdote about an interaction between his grandson and him:

"I have a grandson who once asked me to go with him to a popular but inappropriate movie. I told him I wasn’t old enough to see that film. He was puzzled until his grandmother explained to him that the rating system by age didn’t apply to Grandpa. He came back to me and said, 'I get it now, Grandpa. You’re never going to be old enough to see that movie, are you?' And he was right!" (Elder Robert D. Hales, "Our Duty to God: The Mission of Parents and Leaders to the Rising Generation," April 2010 General Conference).

Now, with Elder Hales' example in mind, consider this video of two toddlers smoking on a Chinese train that has all of China in an uproar. The children look as if they are ages four and two.

There's a saying, and I think Elder Hales' story expresses it, that "If it ain't good for kids, then it ain't good for adults." Do you agree?

I think when not only Mormons but all people have a visceral repulsion to something, like kids smoking, the inner light of Christ that we all have is telling us something about the value, or lack thereof, of that activity. Smoking seems to be an obvious application of the rule. Marital intimacy seems to be an obvious exception. Can you think of any other examples that the rule applies to or that are exceptions?

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