Sign of the Times

.

It’s so strange to me that society doesn’t connect the dots. Especially dots as obvious as these:

Dear bnbazidefk
Free-Range Kids:  I live in Rockhampton Queensland Australia.  Our town is one of the states most obese.  Rockhampton has been identified as one of the cities that our states health system recently targeted to pilot a healthy eating, healthy movement program fro children  (and parents) under 5.

I was one of the facilitators for this program and was gob-smacked to see this sign. — Katrina

Is sitting quietly okay? Provided no one plays duck, duck goose?

Is sitting quietly okay? Provided no one plays duck, duck goose?

.

 

, , , , , ,

44 Responses to Sign of the Times

  1. Greg June 21, 2015 at 9:54 am #

    This just happens to remind me of my youth. When we were in grade school we used to swing up to the point where the swing would be level with the top bars. It would be quite difficult to get up that high. Then, when we reached that pinnacle we would JUMP OUT and go flying. It was exhilarating to say the least. I can only imagine the literal horror on people’s faces if they were to see a kid do that today. I suspect SWAT teams and hordes of CPS people would arrive on the scene and immediately haul everyone off. To allow something as horrible as that only extreme measures could be applied. The above signed should be placed along with all the other non-sequitur signs around the country.

  2. Papilio June 21, 2015 at 10:20 am #

    Well the ‘no vandalism’ is understandable. I’d be pretty tempted to vandalize that sign…

  3. SOA June 21, 2015 at 10:41 am #

    never seen a weight limit on a playground before. That is a new one. Often parents have to get up there and help little kids down and they might be over the weight limit but you gotta do what you gotta do. some kids outweigh me or at least they definitely did when I was skinny and only weighed 115. They really should just make playgrounds strong enough to handle up to like 250 pounds and that will cover all kids and most adults.

  4. bsolar June 21, 2015 at 11:06 am #

    @SOA: “Often parents have to get up there and help little kids down and they might be over the weight limit but you gotta do what you gotta do.”

    The weight limit applies to “playing” on structures. I consider it not such a ridiculous limit: the appliances at the park might have been designed and tested only with that lower weight target in mind.

  5. Earth Waratah June 21, 2015 at 12:02 pm #

    I use to live at Rockhampton. There they have far too many fast food stores and one of Queensland’s highest rates of assault rates which is fuelled by alcohol and yet this is what they do. Glad I left.

  6. Earth Waratah June 21, 2015 at 12:06 pm #

    @Greg – Child Safety(CPS) at Rockhampton has been caught many times in fabricating evidence to steal children from families and not once punished for it.

  7. Sarah J June 21, 2015 at 12:08 pm #

    SOA: Eh, I’ve always seen weight limits at playgrounds, often at the playplaces in fast food restaurants. Like Bsolar said, these playgrounds are usually designed and tested with a certain size and weight in mind.

  8. Charla June 21, 2015 at 12:23 pm #

    Yes, the weight limit was also the first thing I noticed…but no one has yet commented on the “no bouncing/no jumping/no running” rules in force. This sign belongs in a library, perhaps.

  9. RJ June 21, 2015 at 1:06 pm #

    This all stems from the insurance companies and the criminal lawyers and “victims” who have robbed the taxpayers and government pockets from numerous lawsuits.
    As a result insurance companies call the shots before they will insure anyone and they are the ones who dictate
    so many restrictions.

  10. Ben June 21, 2015 at 1:30 pm #

    That sign is a clear example of wordiness. Exactly how can you have fun if running, jumping and bouncing are banned?
    That sign could be cut in half if the rulemakers restrict themselves to prohibiting vandalism, not taking responsibility for injury, and the info to report damage.

  11. Jeff June 21, 2015 at 1:46 pm #

    These playgrounds are now a product of mass production. They are being sold as a complete installation. As such, many of these warnings come from the manufacturer of the product and the Town / School where they are installed are afraid to go against the manufacturer’s recommendations. Everyone feels they are protecting themselves. Push the manufacturer and your purchaser for what rules they need to have. Consider this before signing on to a fundraiser for a new playscape. Other excessive rules at these include “no bare feet / proper footwear required” and “do not play on when wet”.

  12. Reziac June 21, 2015 at 2:32 pm #

    Hey Greg — the real trick is to get the swing going so hard that you go all the way up and over the top bar and do a full circle!

  13. Donald June 21, 2015 at 4:31 pm #

    I disagree

    Society is connecting the dots. However bureaucracy has grown so thick that we’re powerless to react. We made a system where rules cannot be bypassed so that we can curb corruption. However by doing so we created another problem. The system has become so focused on rules, regulations, and procedures that it is unable to do anything outside of this. Humans can connect the dots and understand that things have gone too far. However to try to change this will go against the regulations that are consistently growing like an aggressive virus!

    There aren’t any procedures of what to do if things have gone too far. The country can’t move without first writing procedures on how to move!

    To quote Philip Howard, “Nobody is in charge.”

    http://www.onmysoapboxx.com/robot

  14. Elin June 21, 2015 at 4:41 pm #

    Well “no vandalism” is reasonable but since this not allowed anywhere it would be like making a sign with “No murder”. If you want reasonable rules I would accept “Watch out, try to not run into someone” “Do not jump from a structure if anyone is close to where you aim to land” and “Older kids look out for younger ones to avoid unnecessary accidents”.

  15. Bob Davis June 21, 2015 at 4:42 pm #

    A reply to Donald: Not only do we have wall-to-wall bureaucracy, but once you have bureaus established, the people who work there have a vested interest in keeping and even increasing all those “Byzantine” regulations. Here in the US, someone commented: “Imagine if all the federal illicit drug laws were repealed, and such mind-altering substances were on a par with alcohol. Think of all the ‘narcs’ who would be out of work.”

  16. Donald June 21, 2015 at 4:45 pm #

    “…………This all stems from the insurance companies and the criminal lawyers and “victims” who have robbed the taxpayers and government pockets from numerous lawsuits.
    As a result insurance companies call the shots before they will insure anyone and they are the ones who dictate
    so many restrictions………”

    I moved to Australia from California. Shortly after I moved here they changed the laws to allow lawyers to advertise and to charge by the ‘No win no fee’ policy.

    I rolled my eyes and was shaking my head. “You Aussies don’t know what kind of ‘can of worms’ that you’re opening! I thought that you would of learned your lesson when you introduced cane toads! Now you want to introduce lawyers unbridled?”

  17. Gina June 21, 2015 at 4:51 pm #

    No running? NO RUNNING?????????

  18. Travis June 21, 2015 at 5:02 pm #

    The no vandalism rule is perfectly fine, but the other rules are ridiculous. Children can’t play without running, it sucks the fun out of everything. They’ll have to sit on the sandbox (if that’s not too dangerous) and stay there the whole time they’ll be there.

    But it just goes to show the warped mindset of parents. Once, I I sent my son on his own to the park (he’s six, but he does look quite younger, around four). In the end a police officer brought him back. She said that he wasn’t allowed to be on the park by himself. I’m a new parent, so I went “Well, okay.” and went with him next time. The cops were called–on me. Because I was a 6’4″ male in the park that looked nothing like my child. So if he’s not allowed on his own and I’m not allowed to be there… then he’s not allowed to be there?

    BY THE WAY! I saw some people complaining about the weight limit. Remember this is in Australia, the weight limit is 70 KILOGRAMS not 70 pounds. 70 kilograms is easily an adult, it’s 154 pounds. That’s a LOT of weight. Even bigger children/ smaller teens would be able to climb no problem.

  19. James Pollock June 21, 2015 at 5:37 pm #

    “I moved to Australia from California. Shortly after I moved here they changed the laws to allow lawyers to advertise”

    Also known as “freedom of speech”.

    “and to charge by the ‘No win no fee’ policy.”
    Also known as “providing access to justice for people who can’t afford to retain a lawyer out of pocket.” (Note that the contingency fee approach actually increases the odds that lawyers will take on only cases they can win. A lawyer who gets paid win or lose will pursue any cause, rightful or not… that’s what they get paid for. A contingent-fee lawyer only gets paid for the cases that are rightful; they get paid nothing for fling frivolous claims.)

  20. jen June 21, 2015 at 5:50 pm #

    I just asked my 9 year old if she would go to a playground like this. She read the sign above and said, “what the heck.” I asked what the problem was. She said, “too many rules.” :No running, no jumping, no bouncing. . .kids just do that.” Maybe we should just let kids run things for awhile.

  21. Donald June 21, 2015 at 6:14 pm #

    “…….changed the laws to allow lawyers to advertise”

    “Also known as “freedom of speech”.

    Excellent example of how people can connect the dots but are unable to change anything!

    Every change will bring an argument. I’m all for considering both sides of the story and arguments are welcome. However there are a lot of people that argue just for the sake of arguing. In fact I have met people that argue for the sport of it. (another example of things going too far)

    We determined for the sake of the country that we should make it illegal for tobacco companies to advertise although this violates their freedom of speech.

  22. James Pollock June 21, 2015 at 6:28 pm #

    “Every change will bring an argument. I’m all for considering both sides of the story and arguments are welcome. However there are a lot of people that argue just for the sake of arguing. In fact I have met people that argue for the sport of it. (another example of things going too far) ”

    Um, sure.

    Say, ever notice how pretty much whenever somebody starts talking about how giving up a little bit of freedom is good for the country, or for society, it turns out they’re talking about OTHER PEOPLE giving up THEIR freedom, and the person who thinks giving up the freedom isn’t actually suggesting giving up any of their own?

  23. lollipoplover June 21, 2015 at 9:39 pm #

    “If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun.”

    ~Katherine Hepburn

  24. Betsy in Michigan June 21, 2015 at 9:50 pm #

    No running, jumping, or bouncing at a playground? Seems high time for a letter-writin’, protest-at-the-Chief Executive-Officer’s- office kind of campaign. It is absolutely surreal. I think you need to marshal literally HORDES of children to run and jump in this immediate vicinity. Call the news media and gets lots of publicity!

  25. Jenny Islander June 21, 2015 at 10:23 pm #

    But what’s the point of taking children who weigh less than 70 kilos to the playground at all if they can’t run, jump, or bounce? That’s what playgrounds are for! Does the person who wrote these rules remember what it was like to be a small child? “Play to have Fun!” Pshyeah right.

    Also, if the play equipment isn’t rated for “persons 70 kg or over,” they’d better get used to having the fire department called out every time somebody’s little brother gets stuck on top of the climbing bars.

    Here’s a less silly set of playground rules:

    —Play to have Fun—

    NO PUSHING
    NO THROWING THINGS
    NO GANGING UP ON ANYBODY
    NO BAD LANGUAGE
    NO VANDALISM

    THIS PLAYGROUND IS FOR CHILDREN.
    TEENS AND ADULTS
    ARE ALLOWED ON THE EQUIPMENT
    AS HELPERS ONLY.

  26. Donald June 21, 2015 at 10:28 pm #

    “Say, ever notice how pretty much whenever somebody starts talking about how giving up a little bit of freedom is good for the country, or for society, it turns out they’re talking about OTHER PEOPLE giving up THEIR freedom, and the person who thinks giving up the freedom isn’t actually suggesting giving up any of their own?”

    I think we really agree on this one

    For example: the country is broke. It was suggested to stop postal service on Saturday as a way to save money. This was knocked back as people didn’t want to give up their right to receive letters on Saturday

  27. sexhysteria June 22, 2015 at 2:48 am #

    They could add: Crash helmets must be worn when walking fast, and: Close your eyes if someone has to scratch their privates.

  28. Emily June 22, 2015 at 8:44 am #

    @Donald–I’m from Canada, and we only receive mail from Monday to Friday here. Saturday service was dropped so long ago, that I don’t even remember when that happened, and I have a pretty good memory.

    Anyway, back to the topic at hand, I agree that the “no running, jumping, or bouncing” rules defeat the purpose of a playground. Vandalism absolutely should be banned, and I’d even hazard to say that bad language should be banned as well. No, it’s not exactly harmful, but has anyone else here seen the episode of Modern Family where Lily, then preschool-aged, learns the F-word and yells it out at a wedding? So, allowing kids to swear in public undermines other people’s efforts at parenting. However, I don’t think it’s nearly as undermining as when “Good Samaritans” do the “where are your parents?” thing, or even call the police, on kids who are playing outside or walking somewhere without an adult. Also, about the “playground is rated for people under 70 kg” rule, I know the difference between pounds and kilograms (because I’m Canadian, and the public school system taught us the metric system, albeit inconsistently), so I knew before calculating the difference that it was somewhere around 150 pounds, but does anyone else see a problem with that? With the childhood obesity crisis, it’s absolutely possible for children to weigh more than 70 kilograms, or 154 pounds, before they lose interest in playgrounds. It’s not common, but has anyone else ever seen X-Weighted Families? Some of those kids weigh over 200 pounds, but the recurring theme is, “I just want to be normal.” So, I think those children should be encouraged to use the playground most of all. It may cost a bit more to make the playgrounds safe for bigger kids, but I think it’d be a more worthwhile cause than dumbing down the playgrounds every few years to meet ever-stricter “safety standards.” In fact, I think the powers-that-be should look at the bigger picture of “safety,” and think, “Does this playground have elements that are challenging and fun for kids of ALL ages? Will it encourage children to move?” Because, in the long run, a bumped head or a scraped knee at six years old is much safer than Type 2 Diabetes at sixteen, from a lifetime of insufficient physical activity.

  29. Emily June 22, 2015 at 10:05 am #

    P.S., I weigh more than 154 pounds (I’m also around 5’10”), but I still swing on the swings once in a while. So, it is possible to make playgrounds that can support an adult’s weight.

  30. Eric S June 22, 2015 at 11:10 am #

    LOL! Now that doesn’t sound like “fun” at all. “Running, jumping, and bouncing”, key things for kids’ play. That’s like saying, “Enjoy the swim – No splashing, no diving, no water toys”. Daaang! That’s as fun as sitting in a tub of water.

    This is not about the children, it’s about liability issues. Plain and simple. Cuz when kids have fun, it’s not “fun” for the people in charge. Them first before the kids.

  31. Steve June 22, 2015 at 1:36 pm #

    Fortunately, children can play outside “without” going to a “government” playground ( where busy-bodies are more likely to “watch and report.” ) But I realize that in large cities, parks are usually the only green space available for semi-free play.

    I have no memory of spending more than an hour or two in a public park when I was a child. There were far more interesting places to go or to roam.

    This blog is more oriented toward families in large cities.

  32. Steve June 22, 2015 at 1:40 pm #

    If you’re new to this blog, you need to know about The Abernathy Boys:

    http://www.freerangekids.com/unaccompanied-minors-boys-10-and-6-travel-solo-from-oklahoma-to-new-york-city-by-horse-2/

  33. Diana Green June 22, 2015 at 2:54 pm #

    How about we all submit our favorite non-sensical park or play ground signs? A contest!

    Reminds me of a contest we had when I was working in the country, with pictures of outhouses!
    There were very funny signs and very funny outhouses!

    Those were the days! Fewer rules and more laughs. When did we lose our national sense of humor?

  34. Slyman June 22, 2015 at 9:04 pm #

    Pretty sure this would be there entirely for liability reasons. Some sue happy parent (or drunk overweight adult) sued a council somewhere so rather than not provide facilities the council essentially provide a disclaimer. I very much doubt there are playground police stopping kids having fun.

    Anyway, who cares about Queensland. Go the blues!

  35. Marka June 22, 2015 at 10:52 pm #

    It’s the lawyers who are running the show. Everyone is terrified of being sued, at least in America. Thus, our ever expanding Nerf World.

  36. Peter June 23, 2015 at 12:45 am #

    In fact I have met people that argue for the sport of it. (another example of things going too far)

    No you haven’t.

  37. James Pollock June 23, 2015 at 1:53 am #

    ” In fact I have met people that argue for the sport of it. (another example of things going too far)
    No you haven’t.”

    Now you’re just being contradictory.

  38. MissEliza June 23, 2015 at 3:51 am #

    Unfortunately this is a direct result of people being sue happy these days. We’ve had to implement ridiculous rules for kids on our school playground because parents have sued when their kid got hurt playing tag. Sad, but true.

  39. Quartermaster June 23, 2015 at 8:17 am #

    That sign is contradictory and stupid. Typical of idiot leftards.

  40. SteveS June 23, 2015 at 11:59 am #

    People keep blaming lawyers and sue happy parents, but where is the evidence? There are thousands of public parks in the US that don’t have these signs and are still able to get insurance. These municipalities also have lawyers that advise them and help minimize liability. I am just guessing here, but I think this is more the product of busybody gov’t officials.

    From a tort perspective, that sign doesn’t do much to prevent being sued. It is pretty much understood that kids will run and jump. Bad language won’t result in any kind of lawsuit.

  41. Emily June 23, 2015 at 7:11 pm #

    >>Fortunately, children can play outside “without” going to a “government” playground ( where busy-bodies are more likely to “watch and report.” ) But I realize that in large cities, parks are usually the only green space available for semi-free play.<<

    Well, Steve, there's that, and there's also the fact that, for overscheduled, over-supervised, over-screened kids, total "free play" might be a bit overwhelming–they might not know how to "just play," because, in the constant shuffle from ballet, to soccer, to Brownies, to swimming, to Candy Crush Saga on the iPad, they've always been told what, and how, to play. A playground provides a bit of a scaffold–the kids can choose to play on the equipment, or they can choose to play tag, or Red Rover, or Octopus, or something else (more options if they have a ball or a Frisbee) in the green space beside the equipment. They can choose to swing on the swings first, or go on the monkey bars first. Maybe after a few times of going down the slide the regular way, they'll try to climb up. Maybe after just playing on the climber is boring, they'll imagine it as a spaceship, or a pirate ship, or a time machine, or use it to play "lava tag," where you either can't touch the ground, or you can, but only for maybe three steps at a time. But, my point is that imagination is a skill that has to be developed, so if you put a child in an empty field when that child has had no opportunities to practice imaginative play, and has grown up on a diet of screen time and structured activities, that child is just going to get bored, and want to leave. But, having the playground equipment there provides a scaffold for those developing imaginations.

  42. Rachel June 24, 2015 at 6:44 am #

    Playgrounds were for idiots when I was a kid (tho’ we also walked-up hill to school both ways – sigh).
    As a small child, we lived next to a huge abandoned orange grove in Florida. Lots of cane grew between the trees; when we weren’t tamping down the cane for giant mazes with old broom handles, we’d pick oranges and throw the rotten ones at each other, then take a dip in the lake to rinse off.
    I always felt sorry for kids who “had” to make do with the playground.

  43. Rachel June 24, 2015 at 5:54 pm #

    Oh my God! That is unbelievable. So basically, don’t play.

  44. Lai-Lai June 27, 2015 at 5:38 am #

    So basically “Exercise of any kind is strictly forbidden, & no fatties or adults on the seesaw.”