No running on the playground.
No playing chase or tag on the playground.
No pretending to be the guys from Star Wars on the playground.
I get it. You’re afraid of lawsuits from kids getting hurt. You don’t want children playing violent games and making other kids feel unsafe. It is hard to manage kids who are active on their own terms instead of via organized sports.
So where do you draw the line?
If imaginary light sabers are OK, why not imaginary guns? What about chase games that get out of hand? There are hundreds of kids at school, and it makes sense to have big rules that keep everyone in line.
But. I have to say that reliving Kindergarten through Mike’s eyes reminds me why I felt like I was in prison until I graduated from college.
And what happens in repressive regimes?
Well. For instance. Mike and his friends now play a game called “Zar Gors.” I love it so much that he and his friends invented a subversive game. It is modeled after an “approved” playground game that sounds a lot like “Red Light Green Light” and involves aliens. See? That’s what happens.
When I was a reasonably young kid my dad let me read The Monkey Wrench Gang. And now I get why.
Easily Abbey’s most famous fiction work, the novel concerns the use of sabotage to protest environmentally damaging activities in the American Southwest, and was so influential that the term “monkeywrench” has come to mean, besides sabotage and damage to machines, any violence, sabotage, activism, law-making, or law-breaking to preserve wilderness, wild spaces and ecosystems. It is the bible of what some critics call “eco terrorists”. (wikipedia)
I want Mike to follow the rules. I want him to understand why someone made the rules. And I want him to be able to make his own judgement about whether or not the rules are right and just.
Sure. It starts with something as small as thinking “Are you kidding me? There’s nothing wrong with playing good guys vs. bad guys!” and builds to living a life where you question authority before submitting to it. Or not.