Letters to the Editor

Notable KU grad

March 4, 2010


To the editor:

Kathy Barth’s article in Monday’s Go! section entitled “Lawrence parents tackle nature deficit disorder” mentions Richard Louv, author of “Last Child in the Woods.” Louv is also chairman and co-founder of the Children & Nature Network, an international organization working to connect youth to the natural world. I applaud the mothers mentioned in Ms. Barth’s article, as well as John McGrew’s “Outside for a Better Inside” task force for tackling the nature deficit disorder issue at the local level.

Louv is no stranger to Lawrence; he is a 1971 graduate of Kansas University. KU would be remiss in not honoring Louv with their highest award, the Distinguished Service Citation. This award recognizes KU alumni and friends who have demonstrated outstanding achievements “for the betterment of society and in behalf of humanity.”

Among his many honors, Louv is a 2007 recipient of the Cox Award, Clemson University’s highest honor for “sustained achievement in public service,” and the National Audubon Society presented him the 2008 Audubon Medal “for sounding the alarm about the health and societal costs of children’s isolation from the natural world — and for sparking a growing movement to remedy the problem.” It is high time this gentleman is recognized by KU at the highest level.


1029 8 years ago

I encourage all parents to leave their kid in the wild sometime. It is remarkable how a kid will learn how to survive without the conveniences of the modern world (not all of them, some of the weaker kids will probably die, so as parents you have to be ready to accept that possibility).

When I was 12 my dad drove me out to a rural area and made me get out of the car. I remember standing outside, wondering what was going on, and then he just peeled out and left me there. When I got thirsty, I managed to find water. When I got tired, I found a place to sleep. When I got hungry, I just ate some leaves and tree branches. I wandered around the woods for five or six days, and then I heard a car horn honking and I came out of the woods and there was my dad parked on the side of the road right where he had left me. It definitely made me a better person. However, like I mentioned before, weaker kids will die. I had an older sister that didn't make it through this challenge, and my dad used to tell me how I should have 7 uncles even though I only have 5.

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