Tommy Jordan and Facebook (Digital) Parenting

There is a video currently spreading like wild fire of a very pissed off father who decides to teach his daughter a lesson about manners, civility, IT support, and common sense. If you haven’t seen it, enjoy:


Now, the generational divide concerning the video could not be stronger, with mostly teens decrying it, and mostly adults loving it. I happen to be on the loving side, and here is why:

When I was 11, I could not wait to be 12 so I could take my local hospital’s babysitting course, and start working as a ‘certified’ babysitter for my parents’ friends. I would watch their newborns sometimes till 3 in the morning, and I was 12! When I was 14, I couldn’t wait to be 15, so I could go to the local city office and get my permit to work, wherein I promptly got a job as a carhop for a 50’s themed place in my home town. I worked every summer in highschool, throughout my entire college career (it’s how I put myself through college), and of course, working on average 2-3 jobs in adulthood. My husband worked for free at his family’s eatery from the time he could stand on a kitchen chair and look over the counter to take orders. It probably never occurred to us to do anything else. So when I see a post like the daughter made, I have to laugh at it, as to me it is utterly ridiculous.

As parents, we have a moral obligation to feed, clothe, shelter, and nuture our child, but more than that, I have a sworn duty not to turn him into a dickhead. He will understand that the things he wants are not the things he needs, he will understand that hard work is sometimes not only its own reward, but its ONLY reward, and he will get that he is part of a unit, not the center of the universe.

This father didn’t raise a hand to his child; he did not call her names; he did not even reveal her identity; all he did was show her in no uncertain terms the following things:

You respect the people who break their backs to provide for you
You understand that your responsibilities are commensurate with your abilities, and do your best
You understand that nothing is guaranteed in this life, especially not frivolities like your own personal laptop (something I would have KILLED to have at that age!)
And most importantly…
You never, NEVER try to get away with something online when your parent is a geek.

I salute you, Mr. Jordan. While I am firmly anti-gun, even I could appreciate a few rounds into that piece of kit (and of course, one from the mum!). Your daughter may not thank you now; hell, she may never thank you. But many, MANY parents do thank you.