Mothers for Violence

She’s a pretty, smiling, well-adjusted single mother, three-time winner of the WorkplaceEfficiencyGreat! Award at Hayek Associates and the coordinator of her local cell of Neighborhood Watch. Her child is a smiling, frequently laughing angel, and already a two-time winner of the ArtsyDoodlePrize, Barnaby Elementary’s highest award for success in art and graphical design.

And according to Mary-Jo Thrasher this is because, and not in spite of, her uncommon method of child-raising.

“Well really I think a lot of people are, on this one matter, fucking silly”, Thrasher, MfV’s Mom of the Month, says. “The world is a big, bad, dangerous place. My children are not going to grow up ignorant of this.”

The MfV method of disregarding all age limits on all entertainment has drawn criticism from various organizations, including the furious condemnation of Callum Wahm-Bulans, M.Div., of the Catholic Propriety League. Thrasher sees this all as misguided and unfounded prejudice; understandable given the weight of historical tradition, but fundamentally misplaced. “Dialog will solve this”, she insightfully points out.

What she strongly denies and cannot stand are the occasional and outrageous blood libels of child abuse. “For Christ’s sake! Showing them T2, Predator and Beetlejuice isn’t abuse! It’s not real, but blood and pain are real enough, out there. My child’s not going to come unstrung when she stubs a toe, or when a bully pushes her, once she’s seen a man skinned alive and his skull made into a belt buckle.”

“Real terrors don’t have a pause button. That’s why it’s frankly insultingly irresponsible to have real terrors be the first terrors your child meets. She needs to know the world! She needs to have a reflex for kickin’ the creep in the nuts!”

On supposed nightmares and trauma, Louisa Dingus Hemphill, MfV’s Social Director, is less colorful but equally frank. “They come. Of course they come, nightmares and bedwetting and running to Mommy. Childhood is pure terror, no matter what you do. Think of it, thinking for the first time of mortality, of the permanence of mistakes, of loss and senseless cruelty. Thinking that those things are real; they could happen to you… or to Mommy. Childhood is hell, in addition to heaven; you can’t take either part out.”

“We in MfV feel it’s not a good idea to keep children ignorant of the dark parts of life. It’s not ‘better’ if they stumble into them on a DVD surreptitiously loaned from a friend, or in vague rumors of something bad. It’s not ‘sweet’ their world and dreams of future will be shattered when they hear the world is not as rosy as their misguided parents have told them. They deserve better.”

“Children are the future”, Hemphill says, as a tear of infinite sadness and deep love rolls down her careworn cheek. She’s a mother of five, yet somehow finds the energy to volunteer for MfV’s Some Parent Gotta Tell hotline. “I’m not going to have a world run by people unaccustomed to reality”, she says. “And I’m not going to treat my children as dainty innocent pets; they’re their own people, they’re the future, and I am going to raise them to be informed adults and I’m going to be proud of them!”

Hemphill notes that MfV wishes, perpetually, always, forever, to express its full support and gratitude to all the filmmakers, game designers, rap and heavy metal lyricists and any TV screen chicken stranglers out there — they’re doing, in addition to art, also valuable educational work, and are often and unjustly maligned for it.

“Shit”, Thrasher laughs, mussing her daughter’s hair, “am I supposed to put on leather pants and hump Pa to loud rhymes? And crack a bloody whip? That would be weird, wouldn’t it? Yet it’s life. I think a DVD of Overblooddeath’s Bloodskinfest concert is show enough. Who knows, I may even buy the little one a ticket for the real thing if she behaves and keeps the bed dry.”

“Because”, she finishes with a wink, “innocence is pretty, but experience is beautiful.”

Little Donna flashes the horns and smiles in agreement.

* * *

In other news, the Catholic Propriety League wishes to announce the publication of the latest number of its magazine, Passion. The new theme issue asks tough questions about penitence and self-mortification, and includes a lengthy history and a handy how-to on the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, i.e. the Inquisition. The theme number is subtitled “Massive Racks and Hot Screws”, and is available in select bookshops and kiosks worldwide.

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