Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Peter Pan Kids

On May 1, 1960, Fidel Castro launched his slogan Cuba sí, Yankees no! and ordered the creation of communist indoctrination schools. In July, he began to confiscate properties owned by Americans, Spaniards and Jews. In October, he created the neighborhood spy committees fashioned after 1930s Nazi Germany.

The primary concern of Cuban parents was the prospect of losing the right to make the decisions about raising their children. The creation of the Young Communist Pioneers - replacing the Boy Scouts - added panic to the situation. Painful as it was, many parents decided it was time to get their children out of Cuba even if they had to leave unescorted.

From December, 1960 through October, 1962, over 14,000 unaccompanied children between 6 and 18 years old left Cuba for the US in a secret operation. It was coded: Operation Peter Pan.

Then the Cuban Missile Crisis erupted and the last commercial flight from Havana to Miami departed Cuba on October 22, 1962 with the last children of Operation Peter Pan. There were 50,000 more children with their visa waivers left stranded in Cuba.

Parents losing the right to make the decisions about raising their children: Of course, such a thing could never happen in America. Oh, no?

As shocking as it may seem, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that courts--not parents--have the final authority on when and what to teach children about sex education. The state -- in its far greater wisdom about what's right and wrong -- has ultimate power over your kids.

The ruling stems from a case filed by a group of Palmdale, Calif., parents whose elementary school children were given a sexually explicit questionnaire without the parents knowledge or consent. Kids ages 7 through 10 were asked, for example, to rate the following activities according to how often they experienced the thought or emotion:

Touching my private parts too much.
Thinking about touching other people's private parts.

Thinking about sex when I don't want to.
Washing myself because I feel dirty on the inside.
Not trusting people because they might want sex.
Getting upset when people talk about sex.

The parents argued that they were deprived of their fundamental right to control the upbringing of their children by introducing them to matters of and relating to sex in accordance with their personal and religious values and beliefs.

But Judge Steven Reinhardt (married to ACLU officer Ramona Ripstein), writing for the Ninth Circuit panel, stated: We hold there is no free-standing fundamental right of parents 'to control the upbringing of their children by introducing them to matters of and relating to sex in accordance with their personal and religious values and beliefs .... Another chilling piece of the ruling was this assertion: We further hold that a psychological survey is a reasonable state action pursuant to legitimate educational as well as health and welfare interests of the state.

The court has essentially told parents they have only one choice: to put their children in public school or not -- and once they make that choice they have lost their parental authority during the school hours.

"As the message sinks in that the state knows best and parents aren't to be trusted, advocates for private schools and voucher programs should have no trouble finding new recruits." (Kathleen Parker, Orlando Sentinel)

Thanks to Dori for the lead to this story.



4 Comments:

Anonymous Kathleen said...

The situation in Cuba was and is so dire, I'm not sure that's an apt comparison. Keep in mind that at the time of Pedro Pan castro was confiscating all private property and Cubans had witnessed mass executions and imprisonment of innocent citizens, repressive practices that continue today. Academia, including our teacher unions have been hijacked by the radical leftists who embrace commnunism and reject our traditional Judeo-Christian values. The ACLU works on their behalf. It is indeed chilling that activist judges reject the laws they are sworn to uphold. No one should underestimate the importance of the battle for the Supreme Court.

5:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps the problem is money:

I saw the administration of the Palmdale Sch. Dist. on tv apologizing for the whole mess, claiming is was horrible...but this "firm....was used before....everything was ok then...we thought it would be ok this time"....I am paraphrasing. I was thinking at the time that they are really in it, feeling the heat because the responsibility is completely with the District who pays the bills. I was thinking that other Districts had better learn from this mess. i was thinking how could that Dist. be so stupid not to KNOW what was going on--kids are involved.

Yes, they are responsible and so are parents who can ask that their kids are opted out on sex education.

That has worked for years. Teachers have been teaching and the public knows what is being taught. No problems.

The problem comes from private firms getting contracts to teach stuff---always the goal is to make money. (Public schools do not have the goal of making money.) You should know that. The biggest drain on education in California are the book publishers and their sweetheart deals of HAVING to resell books to schools every 7 years whether the schools want/need them or not. Who gains???? Only the publishers.

Courts operate in the public view. Surveying firms or private education corps. should,too. Contracts should not be let without public scrutiny.

Some people will do anything for money. Some people think kickbacks are morally acceptable.

Keep you eye on the money.

Keep your eye on the courts (so you can know when they've made a bad decision.)

Keep your eye on ACLU. And remember. the worst ACLU is better than no ACLU.

Why won't Fidel allow a Cuban Civil Liberties Union?

Stephanie

10:06 AM  
Anonymous Kathleen said...

Stephaine, castro is a communist dictator who doesn't permit any unions in his totalitarian state. Also no human rights, everyone works for the state at starvation wages and no dissent is allowed. Think Stalin and gulags, that is fidel castros Cuba.

8:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bill,
Thank you,

Zoltan

7:56 PM  

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