Thursday, April 05, 2012

Let's traumatize our children (Part 1)

A guest post by GA

There is an old joke about the Brisker (Quick Stereotype: Briskers are Talmudic, Intellectual, Unemotional) who gets to heaven and is told at the gates that he must share a Torah insight before being permitted entry. He pauses, and then turns to the gatekeeping angel and says “You say something, and I’ll Shlug it Up (Yiddish for refute it).”

In that spirit, I recently came across two disturbing children’s items, but I’m not really sure what to say about them. Perhaps someone will say something in the comments that I disagree with, and I can go from there.

The first item is a sheet of stickers that someone brought back from Israel for my kids. (The second item will be discussed in Part 2)

The frogs and lice are cute enough, and perhaps the wild animals are a bit on the gory side, but what is up with the macabre death of the firstborn. I realize that there is no way to sugar coat this particular plague, or even make light of it in Suessian fashion (contrast this with the classic “One day king Pharaoh awoke in his bed / There were frogs in his bed and frogs on his head / Frogs on his nose and frogs on his toes”). However, at what age is exactly is there an intersection between the appropriateness of this imagery and the use of stickers?

Search for more information about things that give kids nightmares at

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