I don’t know how many of you heard this news which is a bit old now. The BBC decided to change the end of the nursery rhyme Humpty Dumpty to ‘made Humpty happy again’ instead of ‘Couldn’t put Humpty together again’. They also changed Little Miss Muffet’s ending to her and the spider becoming friends. (I’m surprised they didn’t change ‘Jack and Jill’ as well)
The reason: The original endings are too harsh and horrific for children.
What the fuck?!
I don’t remember any of us being traumatised by listening to these nursery rhymes or for that matter, even reading fairy tales that had wicked step mothers and big bad wolves. And why does everything need to have a ‘happily ever after’? And aren’t kids being cotton-woolled (I think I just made up that word) enough? Not only do they not go out and play, get dirty and get hurt, but now they won’t be reading nursery rhymes that will upset them.
Are we going to let kids grow up thinking everything in the world is hunky-dory?
Or are we going to teach them to be friends with spiders (which in Australia is so not advisable!)
Or, better yet, are we telling them that even if they sit on a high wall, they are never going to fall and get hurt? (Because that cotton-wool we are wrapping them up with is going to do it’s job!)
Getting hurt is part of life. Physically and emotionally.
And they need to know that.
Kids need to know that shit happens. But you can deal with it.
By wrapping them up in cotton-wool, how long do we think we can keep them safe?
And how are they going to deal with the shit when it does happen?
Because it will.
And then what? (And don’t say you’ll send them to me to ‘fix’)
Until next time,