Chattering Mind

Chattering Mind


Is ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ Okay for Kids?

posted by chattering mind

Yesterday, I took the Chattering boys (ages nine-and-a-half and 12) to see “An Inconvenient Truth,” the documentary about Al Gore’s lecture on global warming. Midway through, the nine-year-old began to sniff, wipe away tears, and then sob in great heaves as aerial views of various cities, including New York, were shown flooding one day in the future if the polar ice caps completely melt. I hugged my son, and began to plan a hasty exit. How insensitive of me, I thought. I never should have brought him. But what to do now? Leave the older in his seat while I waited in the theater lobby with son numer two? Hussle everyone out?

Then the visuals shifted, and Al Gore took a new tact, as if the filmmakers knew just when to lighten up. My son calmed down, but we held hands for the rest of the film.

As the credits rolled at the end to the tune of Melissa Etheridge singing “I Need to Wake Up,” my son turned to me and said, “I think everybody should see that movie.”

So he made it, and we’re incredibly glad we went. Has anyone taken a child younger than nine? How did your older kids react? The “Truth” is a lot to handle. And it is the truth. Journalist Gregg Easterbrook has recanted.



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Kathy

posted July 13, 2006 at 4:50 am


Sorry, we’ve got no kids but I was pleasantly surprised to see a fair amount of people turn out on Saturday afternoon to see the movie in my conservative, midwestern town. There were quite a few younger people in their 20′s there. Didn’t see any kids, though.>



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Jay

posted July 13, 2006 at 4:25 pm


I look forward to seeing the movie. I think it is very important for young people to know what is happening and to balance the sad news with the possibility of good news. They are the future generation that will play an important part in what our earth will be like.>



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GrannieS

posted July 13, 2006 at 4:37 pm


Taking a 9 1/2 year old child to a movie with that frightens borders on psychological child abuse. Why can’t our young have a childhood anymore without being continually bombarded by adult themes? It isn’t right. They are not minature adults but immature human beings. And 12 years old is too young also. Let them play and have a carefree start in life! If we only lived to 35 as in the past, then we could speed the process like marrying at 13. As it is, they will live to be 75 so let them have a long childhood. Sixteen is a far more an appropriate age to introduce social conscious. I feel Internet inventor, Al Gore, has political motives for election 2008, rather than an intense concern for planet earth.>



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Kathy

posted July 13, 2006 at 6:09 pm


Hmmm…little boys are bombarded with images of violence on tv and in video games and on the news for that matter. Are speculative computer simulations of part of the U.S. slowing going under water worse than that? As a licensed mental health counselor, I applaud any parent who tries to raise their children to value kindness and gentleness, and to consider the effects their actions have on others. We are all connected, the energies of our thoughts and actions affect not just ourselves but the global community, IMO.>



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Eevie Keys

posted July 13, 2006 at 8:07 pm


I think it’s a fine notion that you took the kids to see the documentary, Amy. They should have this image in their minds as they grow up and become the next generation- the generation that will change the world.>



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daria

posted July 13, 2006 at 10:56 pm


As I read Easterbrook’s piece I couldn’t help but think of the recent floods in Washington DC and that old joke about the God-fearing man in a flood who turns away all the heaven-sent help for want of his own blindness. To wit: Mr. Bush continues to reject the evidence and effects of global warming as Toyotas float by. BTW, I didn’t see AIT with any of the kids but I did watch it with three naysayers who believe global warming is an exaggeration or a political ploy. As cliche as it sounds, one of them is living off the wealth of his family’s petroleum investments. The other two — well, let’s just say I found myself longing for a few environmental zealots, just to even the balance.>



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Stacy

posted July 14, 2006 at 12:44 pm


Amy, I watched the doc on a PBS station and I know that we need to do something to stop this cycle of damage to the earth. As a country girl living in a city on the coast of Virginia, I see that we are loosing our beaches year by year and I fear for the future of my children and grandchildren. We need to remember that we are a big blue marble floating in space and when we totally destroy her, where do we go! Where will our children and grandchildren go! We don’t as yet have the technology as yet to go to another planet to destroy it for our personal gain. We have been raping the earth far to long without thinking about what we are doing. Living in the NOW or living for the FUTURE, a question we all have to answer. Greed is the downfall of man.>



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Kim Matthews

posted July 17, 2006 at 6:03 am


Amy, I hadn’t considered taking my 10 year old to see the movie until I read your piece…..now I am discussing it with friends of like. I said I’d go to Pirates if he came with me to Inconvenient Truth. We’d do AIC first and hopefully end with the lighter of the two.>



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GrannieS

posted July 29, 2006 at 10:25 pm


With all the wailing about global warming, how many still drive cars? Maybe Al Gore rides a bike? Walk the walk.>



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