Thursday, May 8, 2008

Larry Hicks on Curfews and Parenting

Well, Mr. Hicks discusses the all important aspect of parenting to control adolescent misdeeds. Of course parents should have a stronger presense in the lives of their children - this would alleviate many issues that plague our society.

However, parents are also repeatedly told that their parental authority is not absolute. In fact, schools attempt to usurp parental rights at every turn (remember the middle school in New England that wanted to provide 11 year old girls with birth control pills?).

When schools and other government institutions repeatedly take on the role of parents, it serves to repeatedly and doggedly undermine parental authority.

The result of this unfortunate situation is that newer generations of parents enter into parenting with unclear ideas of exactly where the boundaries are - what are they "allowed" to do, what are they "responsible" for, and what are "others responsible for?"

The more we, as a society, allow schools, police, and elected officials to take over the responsibilities of parents, the more parents will give it up.

This just leaves more of a mess. We need less school involvement and more encouragement for families to pull together. We need to revolt against the tendency to have institutions dictate the upbringing of our children.

Let's spend LESS money on education - the more we throw at schools, the more we support the inadequate status quo.

Let's shuttle the money towards organizations that teach and promote cohesion in families, parenting skills, support groups for parents to learn how to manage the inevitable stress associated with parenthood.

Imagine a world in which most children feel secure and see their parents getting support and encouragement. Imagine how much more confident and prepared these children would be!

There is no amount of formal schooling that can achieve this.

Drop the curfew. It's a smoke and mirrors attempt that will have exactly zero impact on decreasing crime and truancy.

Let's REALLY and FUNCTIONALLY support parents.

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