What were the positives of growing up Amish?Escaping the Amish - Part 1 (4-Hour Workweek)
-Growing up bilingual (Though I didn’t become fluent in English until after I escaped and I was always very self-conscious about my command of the English language)
-The emphasis on the solidarity of the extended family unit
-The emphasis on being hospitable to strangers, helping those in need, whether Amish or “English” (anyone who’s not Amish is “English,” no matter what language or culture he/she represents)
-Building your own houses, growing your own food, sewing your own clothes
These experiences taught me self-reliance, self-preservation, and gave me the ability to relate to non-American familial cultures much better than I might otherwise.
The biggest negatives?
-The rape, incest and other sexual abuse that run rampant in the community
-Physical and verbal abuse in the name of discipline
-Women (and children) have no rights
-Religion–and all its associated fear and brainwashing–as a means of control (and an extremely effective means at that)
Mark Frauenfelder is the founder of Boing Boing and the editor-in-chief of MAKE and Cool Tools. Twitter: @frauenfelder. His new book is Maker Dad: Lunch Box Guitars, Antigravity Jars, and 22 Other Incredibly Cool Father-Daughter DIY Projects