I recently went to the movie, “Won’t You Be My Neighbor”, a documentary on the life of Fred Rogers. It left me feeling both uplifted, and sad. It was uplifting to be reminded of the work that Fred Rogers did that had such a positive impact on so many children and families, yet sad that there aren’t more like him today. Sad because there are “Mr Roger’s ” doubters; people who blamed his work for creating children who are entitled. I believe these folks don’t understand the depth of his work, children, and the strong need we all have to be loved “just for who we are.”
Fred Rogers provided a voice for children, and understood that they are impacted by things that happen in their small world, as well as things that happens in the bigger world. He gave them a platform to grapple with whatever it was they were feeling. He understood that children need to feel that there will always be an adult in their corner, and that no matter what they are feeling, someone will be there to listen and help them through. His message was always one of care, love and respect for children. He knew the importance of listening to these young voices. We could all use some “Mr Rogers” in our world today.