Children today are different from what their parents were in their childhod. The age of innocence ends very early today compared to yesteryears. Children are very well aware of their surrounding world and of daily affairs. The rate of literacy in first world countries is very high and increasing in the other nations. Most children receive a formal education starting with kindergarten and then school. There is a sense of early maturity in terms of intellect among kids.
The internet enables any child to get information on any topic be it good or bad. Most kids read newspapers and are aware of current affairs and have their say on most topics. Surveys show, buying habits of families are greatly influenced by the children of the family. So it is very fair to say how children are socialized today determines the destiny of society, because ultimately these kids will grow up to become responsible citizens- responsible if they are groomed today for the betterment of society. It's true that children today are getting much more freedom than ever- and this is only increasing.
In the US, we see cases where children sue their parents for some or the other issue. Macaulay Culkin, the home alone star sued his parents at the age of 16 for money misappropriation. The truth of the story, no one can decide. Children are exposed to violent TV shows most hours of the day. The video games famous today are full of blood and gore. More the violence, better are the sales. Sometime back in an American public school, one fine lad entered with a gun and shot down many students and teachers. And this is not a lone incident. The evils of the internet are readily available for all kids to see. Quite a few hackers in their teens have been found and roughed up by the cops.
It's true that parents have ensured the best education for their children. But at the same time have the required values and morals also been inculcated. Working parents leave their kid alone at home or at a baby-sitter's. This lack of attention slowly diverts the child to bad habits. The number of children smoking or involved with drugs is unbelievable. In Britain, some years back there was a 12 year old kid becoming a father, so much for innocence and childhood. Juvenile delinquency is on the rise. More and more unique cases are spread all over the globe. Incidents may be far and few but are revealing. They expose the very structure of society which we call ideal.
So where do we go from here. There is a need to inculcate values and ethics from an early age. A much needed introspection of society is needed. Then only a society will emerge with better ideals and more trust.