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Things We Saw Today: Do NOT Let This Man See You High-Fiving a Child

(Or the President.)

Two hands high five in front of a blue backdrop.

“Arrrrrrggggggggghhhhhhh!” That’s how a grown adult man named John Rosemond chose to open an op-ed in the Omaha World-Herald, apparently feeling it was the only way to express his deep distress over what he sees as a modern scourge on civilization itself: the epidemic of adults giving high-fives to children.

Rosemond admits that his position on the issue of inter-generational high-fives is unpopular and makes him a real-life Grinch (“or so it would seem”). His problem stems from his opinion that a high-five, being “a gesture of familiarity,” should only “be exchanged between equals.” Who constitutes an equal? “I will not slap the upraised palm of a person who is not my peer, and a peer is someone over age 21, emancipated, employed and paying their own way,” he writes.

Sorry children, as well as stay-at-home parents, unemployed adults, and anyone else not fitting this description—no high-fives from John for you. Rosemond also clarifies that he would not high-five his doctor (or patient), his judge were he to find himself on trial, his employer or employee, or the President of the United States, because these are also not his peers.

“Respect for adults is important to a child’s character development, and the high-five is not compatible with respect,” Rosemond writes. I’m having extreme trouble trying to figure out how a high five is incompatible with respect, and if it were, then why would it be something to share among peers, with whom you’re likely to want to share some sort of mutual respect. Ultimately, I’m just sitting here trying to convince myself not to let this bizarre take destroy my brain.

“Children should know their place. Adults should know their place. The more adults and children commingle as if they are equals, the more problematic become their relationships,” Rosemond concludes. “Why should a child obey an adult who high-fives him?”

The worst part of all of this comes at the end, when the author’s tag reveals that this man is a family psychologist. This is his job. Imagine taking your family to counseling, only to hear your doctor tell you your problem is too many high-fives.

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  • The poker world is reeling from a wild scandal filled with accusations of cheating and pretty blatant misogyny. (via Uproxx)
  • The FBI tracked Aretha Franklin for 40 years. Here’s what was in her file, much of which was only very recently declassified. (via Rolling Stone)
  • Andrew Lloyd Webber is headed back to Broadway. (via Pajiba)

(image: Photo by Sarah Pflug from Burst)

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Vivian Kane (she/her) has a lot of opinions about a lot of things. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri with her husband Brock Wilbur and too many cats.