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Age-appropriate material

December 14, 2012
The Daily News

EDITOR:

This is in response to the letter, "Where does it end?"

Yes, I do know what is happening at Breitung Township Schools. It is not censorship.

It is parents, grandparents and various community members taking a stand about teaching our children age-appropriate material and material that does not contradict the moral and values we strive to teach them.

First of all it was more than one parent that complained. Second, the songs are not as sweet and innocent as implied. The songs and their lyrics are as follows:

"Over the freeway and to the mall"

Over the freeway and to the mall

A shopping we will go.

Get out of the way, I haven't all day,

But I have lots of dough. Oh!

Over the freeway and to the mall

To buy a load of stuff.

It's understood my check is good.

I just can't get enough.

Over the freeway and to the mall

For Christmas time is here.

The carolers sing, cash registers ring,

My credit card is clear!

We're over the freeway and to the mall,

I never wonder why,

It's not a joke, I'm going broke,

There is so much to buy!

Over the freeway and to the mall

Why don't you come along?

We're gonna shop until we drop.

With us you can't go wrong. Oh!

Over the freeway and to the mall

We never stop to rest.

Oh what a hoot, now get the loot,

For shopping is the best!

Oh what a hoot, now get the loot,

For shopping is the best!

(shout) Gift wrapped, please. Kaching!

This song wasn't only objected to because of the consumerism. It was also objected to because it was rude and used phrases that the children did not even understand due to it not being age-appropriate. Objections were also because of the materialism mentality it was teaching in a time where many depend on help to put a few gifts under the tree in this economy.

The second song is: "O Christmas Tree," with new lyrics by John Jacobson.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

Why are your needles dropping?

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

The mess you make is whopping!

They said you'd last 'til New Years Day,

Now all your green has is gone away.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree

Why are your needles dropping?

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

Why are you always leaning?

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

This really is demeaning

Why can't you stand up nice and tall?

Why must you lean against the wall?

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

Why are you always leaning?

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

You look a little haggard.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

You are a fire hazard.

All though I know it's not a joke,

Why must your limbs go up in smoke?

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

You are a fire hazard.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

You're limbs are really sagging.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

The lower ones are dragging.

I always give your trunk a wrap,

Still on the carpet you leave sap.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

Your limbs are sagging.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

I guess I'm superficial.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

I'm making it official.

Don't get me wrong, I love you so,

But none the less, just so you know.

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,

I'm going artificial!

How is 7, 8 and 9-year-olds singing about their tree being haggard, demeaning and a fire hazard appropriate Christmas song for them to sing? What happened to them having happy memories about a long-standing family tradition? When did a Christmas tree on fire become something to sing about when people have died from this?

The third song is "He'll Be Comin' from the North Pole," sung to "She'll be Comin around the Mountain."

verse 1: He'll be comin' from the North Pole when he comes yee haw

verse 2: He'll be drivin' eight little reindeer when he comes giddy up yee haw

verse 3: He'll be packin' quite a party when he comes (spoken) Yahoo! Giddy up! Yee Haw!

He'll be packin' quite a party when he comes (spoken) Yahoo! Giddy up! Yee Haw!

He'll be packin' quite a party so we're gonna party hardy.

He'll be packin' quite a party when he comes (spoken) Yahoo! Giddy up! Yee Haw!

I find it necessary to correct the letter posted earlier. It was stated the song mentioned having a party with Santa. In reality it uses the phrase 'party hardy' which is well associated with the meaning of adults drinking and going out, not a second grade party. This is not cute for second graders to be singing.

These songs were originally defended to us by stating they are a parody and meant to be funny.

I have yet to find anyone besides the music teacher to find any of this funny or appropriate for the kids. If you wish to look at us "as a few minorities bulling their irrational viewpoints into a public school," then we all should be glad they do so, as for the objections are about the lack of respect and morals that were being taught.

I am deeply troubled that these children had to learn such lyrics.

Instead of teaching them the joy of the season and to care and love for another they were taught greed, rudeness, cynicism and selfishness. These are precious years that we are able to install the morals and beliefs of our future. As Abraham Lincoln once stated, "The philosophy of the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next."

As for who wrote these songs, I ask does it really matter as to how good he/she is if ultimately, in the end, the material is still inappropriate for the age using it?

Parents are not trying to control curriculum, but we are trying to control the morals and beliefs that are taught to our children, who are all of our future.

Because we hold these children's futures in the balance of our hands we need to be so very careful in how we guide them and raise them. This is our responsibility as a community in whole.

Karen Kunesh

Kingsford

 
 

 

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