Following on from my post about kids and screen time earlier in the week, another issue is this. We often hear about discrimination in the arts and other areas against the working class. Posh kids are no better, it is said, but you don’t get hired if you have a working-class accent. But we also hear that it’s unfair the middle-class kids, and private school kids, are better at the arts and academia and so on because they’ve had loads of lessons and opportunities that the working-class kids haven’t had. So which is it? I suspect that the truth these days lies more towards the second explanation than the first (although I don’t doubt that sometimes people don’t get hired because they sound working-class). But if middle-class people are on average better at areas like the arts because they’ve put more work into those areas, then that’s entirely down to people choosing their own lives.
If you want to play a lot of video games, that’s your decision (and don’t get me wrong, I like video games.). Choosing your own lifestyle is what you get to do in a free society. But you don’t get to choose the lifestyle you want and the outcomes you want. If you never practised the guitar much because you wanted to do Minecraft all the time, then you’re not going to get chosen for that amazing band you want to be in who are definitely, like, all going to be stars. If you want to be able to do a skill, then practise it. I know you don’t want to do the hard work when you’re a kid, or even a teenager. Nobody does. But if you don’t, you don’t get the rewards.
Anyway, the rewards for many of these skills, apart from the inherent satisfaction of being able to perform a skill well, are possible rewards only. Most musicians, actors, ballerinas, etc. don’t make much money, and get nowhere. Playing video games, on the other hand, develops a lot of cognitive skills that may see you end up in a high-paying job. (Watching endless stupid YouTube videos, on the other hand…)