Empathy and compassion aren’t just admirable qualities; they are absolutely necessary for a society to function. That society or culture continually impresses its values, or lack of them, on its children.
Our guest on this program, pediatric psychiatrist Dr. Sujatha Ramakrishna, notes evidence is clear that youngsters who harm others and engage in criminal behavior are seriously lacking in empathy and compassion. Additionally, any child or teen who will deliberately hurt animals might be quite close to doing the same to people.
Dr. Ramakrishna strongly believes that parents and teachers should emphasize feelings and acts of empathy and compassion to children, even if it means less emphasis on competition and activities of self-reference. She also believes, and will share with in this program, how animals are an excellent way to teach youngsters responsibility, caring and sensitivity toward others. The benefits are well worth the effort.
Dr. Ramakrishna is the author of Raising Kids Who Love Animals. An animal activist, she has written many articles on animal welfare issues and child development. Non-profit group such as Alliance for Animals and In Defense of Animals rely on her expert testimony in their campaigns, and national news outlets such as USA Today, Today’s Parent and MSN.com have featured her comments in their stories. (26:31)
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COMING SOON: Creating a Family Charter (Guest: Dr. Daniel Trussell)