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October 24, 2016


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Do those screens include TV?

To David's question: "Screens," in this parlance, includes video games, television shows, video chat, and smartphone distractions, like rooting Mom's phone.

This past weekend I let the children watch "Fetch! with Ruff Ruffman" before breakfast (about 90 minutes), then unplugged the router. They were briefly concerned that the videos weren't working, but went on to do other home activities until we left the house about an hour later and upon our return.

My interpretation of the article's POV is that a priori people who care about recommendations for screen time are people who find themselves letting kids play with phones/tablets, but who worry about it. So the article is pitched to them as an audience.

If that's the case, it's annoying that he needs to claim the screen time is making his life easier in some way. We allow zero, save sporting events, and it's been completely costless. As in, zero cost.

And we're a two-career couple with no nanny, housekeeper, babysitter, cleaning person or live-in relatives.

So if somebody has some worry about it, I don't understand why there's the slightest dilemma. Ban. Poof. Done. It's the solution most of the people in our neighborhood seem to take.

It's like saying that you worry about allowing your children to wear red sailor hats. Ok, then, stop putting on red sailor hats. Unless your children are remarkably ill-behaved, that will be costless and ease your mind. Implying otherwise would seem to be misleading the readers, unless JKR and I and most of the people we know all have remarkably well-behaved children. Which the current state of our downstairs would seem to belie, but I can't really know.

I paraphrase the writer's complaint like this:

--I put the red sailor hat on the kid, and she stops taking her shoes off long enough for me to get the baby dressed. I have no other techniques to accomplish this. If the AAP says red sailor hats are noxious, how will I ever get the baby dressed?

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