Should pugs exist? Is it okay to experiment on kids without their knowledge, if it’s for a good cause? Should kids be able to vote?
These are some of the questions explored in Short & Curly, an Australian podcast about ethics for kids and parents. Bubbly hosts Molly and Carl take up issues that affect kids everyday (“Is it okay to fight back against a bully?” “Do you have to love your siblings?”), issues that affect animals (“Should you eat your pet?” “Should pugs exist?”), and issues hypothetical/scientific (“Should we move to mars?” “Kids under the microscope”).
Juicy topics indeed!
A podcast about ethics might sound stuffy, but Short & Curly is not. Molly and Carl keep even serious topics fun and engaging with their snappy delivery, comedy sketches and pop culture references aplenty.
Hug a Pug! (Featured in the episode “Should pugs exist”?)
A typical episode begins with Molly and Carl will taking opposite sides of the week’s topic. After they present their case, there is a cue to for the listeners to hit pause and discuss or think about the issue on their own. We also get to hear what kids in Australian public schools think. Experts weigh in after that, acknowledging the different points-of-view mentioned and offering examples that give us further insight.
This show surprises me with things I didn’t know about. For example, I had no idea pugs had breathing problems due to their short noses. Another episode full of surprises was “Children under the microscope.: The ethics of science.” Back in 1493, a Scottish king devised an experiment to send two newborns to live on a remote island, raised by a woman who couldn’t speak. Raised in an environment without language, would the two infants develop primitive language? The crazy thing was that the outcome of this appalling experiment wasn’t recorded anywhere. It was interesting to hear the kids’ take on this too, with most kids agreeing that it was unethical. And wait until you hear about another experiment conducted in the 1950’s. I’ll just say this: Lord of The Flies IRL.
This podcast is a good conversation-starter with kids, and a great way to learn to see every topic from different points of view. I hope you give it a listen!