Skenazy, founder of the book and blog Free-Range Kids and advocate for "a commonsense approach to parenting in these overprotective times," argues that parents' fears about the safety of their children prevent them from becoming healthy and self-reliant kids.
Despite crime rates that are lower than they've been in decades, "most kids are either supervised in leagues or stuck inside, usually with a screen," due to parents' fears of predators, she laments. "But it is actually safer for kids to play than not to play. Play is good for the brain—it makes kids into problem solvers. Play is good for the body—it makes kids less obese. Exposure to dirt builds the immune system. And don't obsess about accidents: More kids go to the hospital from falling out of bed than trees."