The village is coming for your children
I find it ironic that those who are the most passionate about certain “rights” and freedoms…to marry someone of the same-sex, determine your own gender, take the life of your child in the womb…overwhelmingly approve of and vote for the kind of government with the greatest potential for taking away freedoms. Whereas in the short run bigger government may be seen as the better protector of freedoms, that’s a false and dangerous assessment. The short run requires only short-sightedness, and the immediate future is as far as a lot of us ever look.
It is self-evident that the more control we hand over, the less control we maintain, and the less freedom we enjoy. One of the potentialities that frightens me most is our government’s complete assuming of “ownership” of our children. This is an absolutely appalling prospect to me, yet many who are all about rights and freedom are willing to hand over their parental rights and the freedom to choose how to raise their children to the state. Not me. Not my kids.
I had a strong sense of my primary authority over my children from the moment I became a mother. It was just intuitive – nobody had to tell me that their father and I had the right and responsibility to raise them according to our own beliefs. I sent them to public school when they were of age, but took two of them out (for different reasons) and home schooled them because that’s what they needed and I was completely confident in my authority to do so. Were anyone to tell me then to step aside and let the state decide what’s best for my children, I would have politely but firmly told them where to go. (Home to ponder the non-transferable obligations of parent-child relationships, of course. Where do you think?)
Thankfully, in my state parental rights are largely supported in that a parent who wants to home school is given minimal requirements and restrictions. But we’re a red state. If we ever go blue I fully expect those requirements and restrictions would be added to, and in the process subtracting from the rights and freedoms of parents.
So-called “liberal” ideology in the 21st century, where liberal is supposed to mean “favoring maximum individual liberty in political and social reform,” is misrepresenting itself when it promotes handing over more and more power to the government. Honestly…haven’t we learned anything from history? It’s foolish to believe that the more authority we give the government, the more individual liberty we will have.
And as the family is the most fundamental and crucially important societal institution, anything a government does to weaken or undermine it will not benefit society. This two-part article in Public Discourse asks “To Whom Do Children Belong?” and goes on to argue “How Same-Sex Marriage Threatens Parental Rights.” In it the author quotes a pro-same-sex marriage amicus brief submitted by historians of marriage in the recent Supreme Court decision. It said in part that, “states have sought to limit the public’s responsibility for children by looking to married couples to provide support for minor dependents.” The implication is clearly, as the author says,
“that married couples are agents of the state to help the larger community to raise its children.”
I used to like the expression, “It takes a village to raise a child” as I understood it to harken back to the days when neighbors helped to look after, and even discipline at times, each others’ kids. Because they cared. But now I see that many are understanding it to mean something different, and if enough folks become convinced that children belong to the “village” and not the parents, we will be handing over our sons and daughters to those who do not love them.
Does that really sound like a good plan?
Truth be told, the idea that the state can intervene in the upbringing of children actually dates back to England, 1500s or 1600s, I have trouble remembering when. Even then, the idea was that the state can only intervene when the welfare of the children, who were regarded as belonging to the Crown, demanded that they be removed. This idea persists today because it was a part of British Common Law, which formed the backbone of American jurisprudence.
It’s an idea that needs to be kept alive, but under heavy guard and lots of chains. The idea is, if the parents are doing something to cause extreme and permanent harm to their children, it is the state’s responsibility to remove them and see to their care until such time as they can either be returned to their families or placed with an adoptive family.
To a degree, some still do that, but it has become a tool of oppression for the most part. Before we met, my wife lived in Section 8 housing, and she had more than one run-in with Family Services that made clear to her that she had no rights as far as they were concerned. Even though she had done nothing wrong, kept an immaculate house, made sure her boys were well cared for, they still ran rough-shod over her on more than one occasion.
It’s no secret that most people going into Family Services are left-wing shills with authoritarian leanings. They aren’t the slightest bit interested in the welfare of the children, but rather in taking a metaphorical wrecking ball to the lives of any who dare challenge their authority, even if it’s an area where they patently have none.
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Thanks for reading and commenting, TEP. I can’t imagine the fear that your children might be taken from you. Of course I recognize that there are cases where it is the state’s responsibility to do that, but not because they are our children’s ultimately rightful caretakers, but rather because the government’s role is to enforce the law which prohibits physical abuse. If a child is in danger of being seriously harmed in the care of his or her parents, the state should step in. But as you indicated, there is great potential for this role to be taken to extremes. I spanked my kids, and they’re better off for it. But many would consider that child abuse and might approve of that as warrant for removing children from their parents.
Unfortunately, some parents are so awful to their children that it makes me want to remove them myself. But this is the broken world we live in, and we can’t do that. So I focus on pointing to Jesus who changes hearts and lives.
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Living with the fear of the removal of one’s children is a feature of the day and time. These days, the effects of Dr. Spock’s philosophy are still alive and well. I too spank my kids, and I’m thankful I live in a state where the law permits corporal punishment. That being said, the days for that law are numbered, as more and more of what I call “lefty-loosy” progressives become part of the Family Services. Nor does it stop there. Married couples apply for food stamps in our state are being encouraged to divorce in order to be awarded more benefits. They’ve gone after the family, the education system, and healthcare. I shudder to think what happens next, but I do know my family is actively involved in acquiring what we need to move to Alaska and get away from the nightmare that is the rest of the U.S.
I was just watching a show on life in Alaska. Not for me. I hope it turns out to be good for you and your family, brother.