This is the refrain that often goes through my head: “Thank God I’m not raising children today.” Partially, this is because I don’t have the stamina I had in my twenties and thirties and am glad to pass the baton to the next generation. However, it is not after a delightfully exhausting afternoon with my grandchildren that I most often sound this mantra. It is when I see the decisions that today’s parents face . These high-stakes quandaries were never issues for my friends and me.
Reading about the uber-popular videogame, Fortnite, brought these feelings once again to the fore. Fortnite is a “shoot ‘em, kill em’” game designed to capture and retain the attention of boys. It does so very effectively whether we are talking of twelve-year-olds or males in their forties. This visually vivid and violent game was carefully designed to gain a rating that would let parents allow their teens to play. That is to say that you don’t actually see blood or dismemberment. (Parenthetically, it has to be one of the great ironies of our age that some parents who meticulously refused to let their six-year-old boys play with water pistols or run around with sticks saying, “Bang, bang, you’re dead,” seem to have lost a much greater battle when it comes to their pre-teens and technology.)