Live Long & Prosper by S. M. Hutchens

Live Long & Prosper

S. M. Hutchens on the Fifth Commandment

When Mary and I were married more than twenty years ago, we decided that there would be no television in our home, mostly for the advantage of our children, whom we did not wish to be burdened with it. Several years ago we acquired a small set and keep it in the basement, connected to a videotape player, which gives us full control over what appears on the screen in our home. We still do not have television reception, either by air or over cable.

This means that when I do watch television, once or twice a year, what I see is more striking to me than to those who watch it regularly. I see the changes that have come gradually to most people as abrupt and rather shocking. One of the largest and most horrifying changes has been the portrayal of what is supposed to be normal family life, of the normal and expected behavior of parents and children. We have come a long way from “Ozzie and Harriet” and “Father Knows Best.”

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S. M. Hutchens is a Touchstone senior editor.

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