Wednesday, May 4, 2016

A tale of two viral videos. The good & the "this actually blows."

Mother's Day season always brings out the video makers that know how to make us all cry.  And this year is no exception.  There are two videos making the Facebook rounds this week……..and I get why they've both gleaned a lot of attention.  One deservedly so….it's a super tear-jerker….I mean….it really is.  See the first video below.  There's not much to say about it other than it's an incredible capture of how us moms (and yes…..dads too….but let's not miss the point Internet cynics… was made for Mother's Day) feel when we watch our kids running across the yard and can imagine that same scene four short years ago and it catches our breath how much has changed and we know it's only going to start happening faster.  

And then there's this one….

and I'll just come out with it.  I hate it.  I watched it once and thought--that's cute, funny, gimmicky…..and then I kept thinking about it.  And I starting resenting it and feeling like it's another commentary on how we view children. I've been on a plane with a crying baby--other peoples and my own.  And here's what I don't understand about our culture……..when have children become so intolerable that people who might have to be subjected to a child who is crying on an airplane(where their ears might hurt, they're over-tired, they aren't used to being held on a lap for two hours, and on and on) or wherever, warrant getting a free flight or some other reward? 

I know--it's fake, they're actors, it's supposed to be a nice thing, everyone was pumped when the babies cried because they were one step closer to a free flight and the moms didn't feel bad……I understand all the nuances.  But I can't stand the underlying message here.  "Those of you who have to be tortured by hearing a baby cry on an airplane absolutely deserve a free flight---I can't believe you had to be inconvenienced for three minutes until you got your headphones on by hearing a BABY cry.  Does our society really need more fodder for feeling justified that it's okay to walk around about to blow at any minute when someone so much as puts their toe over the line? Does our society really need more reason to think of children as an inconvenience and a nuisance?  

I think a better use of time and Facebook likes would have been if every time a baby cried in their fake commercial Jet Blue gave a free ticket to the saint on the plane who stepped forward to offer genuine help to the mom who was trying everything in her power to get her baby to stop crying.  "I've been there.  It's okay.  Your kids are a gift.  Let me give you a ten minute break and I'll walk them up and down the aisle for you."  

That deserves a reward, not the random exasperated cranky traveller who believes that everyone is constantly imposing on their life.  

Mountain out of a mole hill here?  Maybe.  Maybe not.  
I suppose I'm just tired of messages that subliminally send the message that kids are a problem to be solved.  

So watch the first video again and again--because that's the real spirit of Mother's Day.  

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