Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: birthday (05/23/05)
- TITLE: The Case of Birthday Vs. Youth
By Angela Ranson
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We will begin with June 24, 1980. On this day, Ms. Youth turned 6. She was expecting a puppy. She got a little brother. She spent her birthday with her grandmother, sitting in a hospital. No cake, no presents. Distressing indeed.
1988. Due to budgetary constraints, Ms Youth had to share her birthday with her father's Father's Day celebration. They went out to dinner with her mother and little brother. There was a cake, but it was not homemade.
Move forward if you will to 1992. Ms Youth found out that her high school graduation was also on June 24. Therefore, the celebration of her birth was lost in a whirl of ceremonies, caps, gowns, dances and receptions.
Because Ms Youth is a fine, hardworking citizen, she did not file charges for any of these offenses. However, as of June 24, 1995, she turned 21. Ms Youth considers this the final straw. Mr. Birthday has restrained her unlawfully with budgets and distressed her with enforced sharing. He must not be allowed to force her into maturity against her will. She intends to fight to maintain her current status and appearance. She asks that you assist her by finding Mr Birthday guilty of all charges, thereby removing him from her life.
I know what you're thinking. A little brother, a father who is part of her life enough to celebrate with her, and a high school diploma seem like gifts from Mr. Birthday, not causes for legal action. But please remember, each of those gifts came with another year of age. Ms. Youth cannot stand for that. She does not want to age past 21. The ages of 21 and beyond tend to have mortgages and children and car payments attached. They tend to join committees and buy insurance. They spend time helping others. Ms. Youth would far rather continue taking care of herself exclusively. She cites the precedents of characters on reality TV, movie heroes, and magazine models. Many of these people are less than 21 and seem very happy without moral responsibility, family obligations or helping others. Ms Youth thoroughly appreciates their attitudes toward violence, relationships, church life and God himself.
Why should Ms. Youth accept aging? Why should Ms Youth accept this distress and restraint due to Mr. Birthday? Well, besides the benefits she would reap from caring for children. And you will have to dismiss the obvious worth of insurance and a home. You will have to ignore for a moment the joy that comes from caring for others. Maybe you'll even have to ignore your own experience of the wonder of having a personal relationship with God, or the examples of other people 21 and younger who do experience that relationship and find strength and purpose there.
Set all of that aside for a moment. Focus instead on the models and characters we see in the media. Believe in the worth of Ms. Youth's desires and wants. Accept that she may well resist maturity regardless of your decision today. That will help you see that you have to convict Mr. Birthday, and end his reign of terror over Ms. Youth. If you do, she will never have to think beyond the moment ever again. What a wonderful gift to give her. Thank you for your co-operation.
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