Goldie Hawn: Pandemic Trauma Hurting Children, ‘We’ve Failed Them’

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 05: Goldie Hawn visits "Opening Bell With Maria Bartiromo"
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Veteran actress Goldie Hawn decried how trauma and coronavirus panic porn has severely harmed children in a recent op-ed for USA Today.

Recalling the stress inflicted upon children during the Cold War when her fifth-grade teacher showed her the horrors of nuclear war, Hawn argued that children imbibe fear in ways that adults do not seem to fully grasp.

“A child’s mind exposed to real-world fear, without the ability to properly process it, can go down dark passages leading to nothing less than existential dread,” argued Goldie Hawn.

The First Wives Club star likened coronavirus panic porn to various moments in U.S. history where children were subjected to national trauma such as the Challenger space shuttle disaster and, of course, September 11. While Hawn certainly did not dismiss the pain and suffering inflicted by the coronavirus pandemic, she argues America has failed to help children through the dread they are no doubt experiencing.

Today, we are in the midst of a national trauma that could very well surpass 9/11 and approach the heightened terror of the Cold War years. The COVID era has changed our children’s lives in far more real, tangible ways – social distancing, school closures, daily mask use.

Kids are afraid of people, spaces, even the air around them – a level of constant fear not seen in decades. In early 2021, emergency room visits in the United States for suspected suicide attempts were 51% higher for adolescent girls and 4% higher for adolescent boys, compared with the same time period in early 2019.

This tells us that as a nation, we have failed our children. The few federal and state dollars that get directed to youth “mental health” invariably end up being earmarked for addiction and “crisis care,” addressing only the most severe disorders. There are modest funds once a kid ends up in a hospital. But what about before?


Hawn recalled her own work with educators in the wake of 9/11 to help children handle trauma and better understand how their brains process events.

“We share ideas like ‘brain breaks’ to encourage kids to stay in touch with what’s going on in their mind – the good and the bad – so they know that their brain is their friend,” she noted. “And if they don’t get along with that friend sometimes, if it says things that make them feel bad, that’s OK too – and we help them work through that.”

Ultimately, Hawn concluded that America needed to get to work on helping the children, fearing that an entire generation could be lost due to the nation’s lack of concern.

“We will survive the COVID-19 pandemic, but I’m not sure we can survive an entire generation whose collective trauma sends them hobbling into adulthood,” she concluded. “We need more research, more preventative care and more early intervention. And there’s still time.” Cc

Goldie Hawn’s op-ed comes after she said that actors need to stay out of politics and instead focus on entertaining people.

“I think we bring awareness to people, just their ability to laugh, to have joy, to experience and to cry. We are emotional beings and create emotions in others and it’s an escape. I think we’re in service, I really do,” she told Megyn Kelly. “I don’t think we should forget that our first job is to help people laugh, feel something, escape.”


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