Comment Of The Day: “Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 11/18/19: Complainers…” (Item#4)

The first Ethics Alarms post on my new “Ideapad,” in a DoubleTree in Fairfield, New Jersey, at about 1 am,  after a miserable 4 and a half-hour drive. Fortunately for you and me, it is a Comment of the Day, in which johnburger213 has done all the thought. It’s a tale of multiple jerks and assholes, with a child involved and the news media turning into a across-the-internet controversy a matter that in bygone days wouldn’t have traveled a city block.

Here is johnburger’s Comment of the Day that is only incidentally on the post, “Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 11/18/19: Complainers, Climate Hysterics, Tiny Tims And Fake News”:

Not exactly on point, but there is this story out of Texas: It seems a mom likes to put notes in her 5 year old son’s lunch kit* to remind him she loves him when he eats lunch at daycare. Well, as luck would have it, she put a note in his lunch, asking the daycare worker to tell her son she loves him very much. The daycare worker would have none of that nonsense, so he/she wrote the mother telling her to put her son on a diet instead. Here is a link to the story:

Now, the daycare worker is a jerk and should be strung up by his/her thumbs for doing something so idiotic. I wonder what goes through the mind of someone who deals with youngsters at a daycare who would tell the mother that said daycare worker would, in fact, NOT tell the child that mommy loves him/her, and would do so by writing a note back to the mother, effectively telling the mother she is a bad parent. Seems cruel to me.

But, I wonder why this was reported to the news media, and I wonder why the media picked up the story and made it go “viral”. When I searched for the story, it had been picked by the local Houston ABC affiliate, then the NY Post ran it, and so on. Why? Why would a parent involve the media and why would the media care about this? If it had been my son, my wife would not have thought about calling the media, though she would have marched down to the daycare and unceremoniously leveled the place with a well-placed anathema.

The mom, Francesca Easdon, appears to have contacted a lawyer. In the report, it looks like she is sitting in law office – she demands justice for . . . what? Not sure, but she wanted the employee fired, which apparently happened. Here is her Facebook page:*F*F-R&eid=ARAhA0fbFegynQHmr1NPAhP6E53qPSEdnBn2GoUj7OZi7bz19crFQWpA6vbbfPoegtFZRLrEqdCdEsqs&tn-str=*F

The post, dated November 13, tells me that there is a lot more going on behind the scenes. She threw out that she removed her son (name and all) from the daycare center and enrolled him somewhere else, thinly veiling a threat of litigation because she is ” . . . worried about the higher cost but I will make it work, no matter what I have to do.” So, is that it? Does she think she is going to score some cash in a lawsuit? If so, will the center cave in to end the bad publicity?

* Note: I do question the propriety of doing this as Helicopter Parenting but, hey, the kiddo is 5 and who doesn’t like nice notes in lunch kits? I prefer Hostess Fruit Pies but a nice note is acceptable. Especially given that Pottery Barn Kids, Barnes & Noble, Target, and a whole host of other retailers sell these things so I would assume it is not uncommon.

17 thoughts on “Comment Of The Day: “Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 11/18/19: Complainers…” (Item#4)

  1. Childhood obesity is a problem. Where would you recommend that society begin to engage that as a whole? That said….not a good idea to tell someone how to raise their child.

    • Check out the mother’s Facebook page. If that child is the offended child, then he is absolutely not obese. He’ll, he isn’t even pudgy. He looks like a perfectly normal 5 year old, albeit with a weird name (“Kyler” or something like that – that is whole ‘nother ethics issue in and of itself: naming children stupid names). The mother also talks about teaching him to make good or better dietary choices – what does that even mean? He’s FIVE!! He’s supposed make bad dietary choices. It’s his job.


  2. Ugh. Facebook. Ugh. Living your life in public. Stupid. I can’t imagine being brought up by a mother who’s running a Facebook page.

  3. There has to be more to the backstory between the day care worker and the mom. This smells like an ugly continuation of an ongoing feud.

    That said, the day care worker should be fired for failing to perform the very first required action for the position: CARE about the child (all DAY)

  4. Holup….

    Also on her Facebook page:

    ….I also brought to their attention the fact that on his [the director of the school’s] teachers public Facebook page there were mass posts regarding drug use and other very inappropriate content….

    • ”mass posts regarding drug use and other very inappropriate content….”

      I don’t DO FacePlant, Rich, who’s involved in the drug use, the mother, the staff?

      And inappropriate content? Yoikes! Did someone link to EA…?

      • The link to the post is right there if you want more information. If clicking the “See More” link is TOO MUCH “FacePlant”, I don’t know what to say.

  5. “When I asked them what are you planning to do about this … I let them know right then that the only resolution is that that person that wrote the note should be terminated,” Easdon told KTRK in an interview.

    Right, and that’s what happened. So it’s resolved. Like John, I’m left wondering why it went beyond that to “alert the media!” I guess she wasn’t getting enough attention from the Facebook posts, so decided to bring in the big guns, to make sure this was a traumatic and confusing experience for her five-year-old, instead of something he wasn’t even aware of that the adults took care of without involving him.

  6. Dude – I’m looking at the two samples of handwriting and, had there not been a confession, I would have believed that she wrote the note on her own to drum up a hoax.

  7. I wonder what Kyler’s father thinks of all this…

    “Healthy choices” for food? Who makes those lunches? Maybe he wants to eat real food like tuna or –perish the thought– peanut butter sandwiches instead of kale and tofu. Doesn’t she realize that, even with the cache’ of the white house behind her, Michelle Obama couldn’t pull that off.

  8. Does a case like this speak to the overall “new normal” of our times regarding our perpetually offended (or outrage) culture? Why does anyone feel a need to handle what could or should be a person-to-person conflict with immediately tattle telling on whoever the assumed wrong person is, using social media and whatever “news” outlet is available to exploit on a dime?

    We live in a snitch culture where every perceived error becomes fodder for the masses to engage in fantasies of vengeance and moral purity while distracting ourselves from our own shortcomings.

    The mother has gotten what she wanted because here we are talking about it. We get to probe into her words, life, and background and think about her. She gets the attention, we get the distraction. Her child will now understand that any time anyone does anything he doesn’t like, a willing audience will probably aid in…firing someone, doxxing someone, berating someone, making fun of someone, and even getting revenge on someone. Self knowledge is no longer power, the madness of crowds (as Douglas Murray points out) is power. It’s an ugly power but as long as we can spend another 5 minutes talking about her while avoiding our own mortality and brokenness, then we win…I guess.

    We truly have become a nation of – always on camera, always on guard, always bitter – assholes.

    • “Her child will now understand that any time anyone does anything he doesn’t like, a willing audience will probably aid in…”

      Yup. This is going to sound weird but hear me out. A while back I watched a Harry Potter movie for the first time. The couple that housed him (his uncle and aunt I think?) was being verbally mean and said something nasty about his dead mother, so Harry used his magic and terrorized the woman, inflating her like a balloon and sending her screaming and floating away out over a harbor. Harry Potter then did a cool-guy walk out the door and into the street, not looking back to see what happened to her. I am sure that this would have been an “everybody claps” moment in the theater, since this was obviously a very unlikeable character.

      So I’m watching this (at home on the couch) at this point and thinking, “ok, here’s the part where one of his wizard friends or teachers or mentors or whatever shows up to tell him that just because he has magic powers doesn’t mean he can use them to endanger the lives of everyone who is mean to him, and we see him shrug and somewhat reluctantly bring her down safely.” I expected something like that, because fantasy stories for the young generally impart at least some deeper meaning and lesson. When a kid is given superpowers, there’s usually (and for good reason) an accompanying message about using them responsibly, because becoming drunk with power and using your superior abilities to punish all who oppose you is what a villain would do, both in fiction, and in real life.

      It didn’t happen, because whoever wrote this story (I don’t know if it played the same way in the book) was no Stan Lee. With great power in 2019 comes…great ability to make your enemies bow at your feet while you kick dirt in their faces. And so the mean old lady just kept screaming and floating away out to sea, possibly to her death for all I could tell. I can’t imagine how she’d survive if he didn’t use his magic to bring her back, which wasn’t shown. Instead (and I don’t recall the details) someone from Hogwarts just showed up and was just like, “you wanna get out of here and do some more magic adventure stuff?” And they did.

      Now I wasn’t alive back when parents used to tell folk tales to entertain kids, instead of popping in Disney DVDs, but it’s occurring to me that the fairy stories had a distinct advantage; they weren’t crafted by a corporation with the goal of getting at your kids’ disposable income. Parents and grandparents making up bedtime stories generally just wanted to delight children and teach important lessons, not sell plush toys. Hans Christian Andersen wrote a story about a mermaid who sacrificed everything to pursue the love of a human, failed, had to watch him marry someone else, and then faced a moral crisis in which she was forced to let give up every selfish impulse and literally die in order to do the right thing, for which she received a heavenly reward. And in Disney’s version, the moral is literally just, “children should be free to lead their own lives.” Got that Mom and Dad? Get out of the way and them what they want.

      The only lesson in 2019 that storytellers (read: marketers) want to teach children, outside of vague, non-challenging tripe about friendship being cool and family being whoever you think it is, is “you are awesome, whatever you want to do is the best thing, and anyone who doesn’t have your back deserves to die in a fire, so get out there and be loud and proud, and never listen to criticism because you are always right.” Of course someone who has internalized that message would sic a Twitter or Facebook mob after a stranger who wronged them in one brief social interaction. Everyone else is just a supporting character in my movie; and if they are rude to me, the star, then they’re one of the bad guys.

      I’m not solely blaming the entertainment industry for Twitter mobs and for us being “a nation of assholes,” because they may just be reflecting the problem rather than causing it. They certainly aren’t helping.

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