What's Right with Kids?

October 14, 1998
Nearly every day we hear what's wrong with kids. Social scientists document rising rates of teen pregnancy and juvenile crime. Educators decry declining test scores and educational standards. Newspapers describe the latest rampage in the continuing saga of kids killing kids.

The depth and degree of the problem has been debated for years in the popular culture (consider the reactions to Dan Quayle's comments about the television program Murphy Brown) as well as in the academy. William Bennett's Index of Leading Cultural Indicators provides a statistical and objective standard which documents the decline of America's family and its impact on the nation's youth.

Unfortunately, this relentless discussion of problems facing children in our society obscures their positive influence and acts of service. At a time when we hear so much about what's wrong with our kids, isn't it about time we hear about what's right with our kids?

Talk of declining test scores ignores the outstanding performance each year of the best and brightest students on those same tests. Academic excellence still reigns supreme on college entrance exams as each year high schools graduate valedictorians and National Merit Scholars who pursue their academic dreams at prestigious universities. Eager students participate in academic bowls, spelling bees, chess tournaments, and advanced honors programs.

Leaders are cultivated in school clubs and student councils around the country. Students develop their musical ability and teamwork in band and orchestra, while others develop their bodies and their spirit in sports programs of all kinds. After school they continue to develop into young men and women of character through involvement in such programs as 4H and Scouts.

Yes, the kids of America have their problems, but let's not forget what's good with kids. They are our leaders for tomorrow.

I'm Kerby Anderson of Probe Ministries, and that's my opinion.

© 1998 Probe Ministries International