Friday, July 17, 2009

What We're Up Against

I think we are up against a lot of hard stuff as parents today. The world has gotten quite wicked. Most of the time, I plug away at life, going about my business, taking my family to church, heeding to the counsels given there, and just try my best, but some days, I get a little overwhelmed at what we have to bolster our children against. It's quite frightening. Here are some examples: gay marriage and the homosexual lifestyle, the sexualizing of society, abortion, teen pregnancy, sex ed, pregnancy outside of marriage, pedophiles, etc., etc. Notice most of these things have to do with blurred lines concerning the law of chastity. Hmmm. I find that quite significant.

I've read some disturbing articles the last few days. The NEA voted to support gay marriage. I'm sorry, but what is the union of public teachers in the United States doing putting the funds of the teachers who have joined toward one political agenda or another? Shouldn't they be focusing on how to better the curriculum in schools to escape the epidemic of illiteracy that is sweeping the nation? Shouldn't they be concerned with the fact that there is still a surprisingly high dropout rate from high school instead of being concerned with a marriage that has nothing to do with academic learning? Well, I guess marriage, the fundamental unit of our society, the unit that produces children, not only by procreating them, but by bringing them up to be responsible, law-abiding citizens, does have something to do with education. But putting funds toward a political agenda with the dues that public school teachers pay--some who are actually against the demoralization of society--is not right.

Another article I read talked about how in Britain, they are trying to make sex education mandatory so that parents cannot opt out. According to the statistic I read, only 4 students out of like 10,000 even opt out now. But making it so they cannot, by law, opt out? That's also wrong. Whether or not sex education even belongs in school is another discussion entirely, but parents should have the most control over what their children learn, not the schools. If that sort of thing hits the U.S., and no doubt it will, my husband, who is so anti-homeschooling it's not even funny (he wrote a paper in college about the benefits of public school versus home or private), has actually said that we'll start to homeschool.

Actually sex education in schools is a major contributor to the big problem of oversexualizing everything. All the other problems I mentioned: abortion, teen pregnancy, sex outside of marriage, even homosexuality, are problems that teaching sex education in school, without the boundaries of morality to assist, have caused. I know these things existed before, but I'm guessing not in the numbers they do now.

It used to be shameful to have a baby outside of marriage. Now, not only is it acceptable, it's condoned. I was on a message board a few months ago where someone asked why it was wrong to have a baby outside of marriage, and about 98% of the answers were along the lines of "it's not wrong, it's okay" or "my parents aren't married and I turned out fine."

The Proclamation to the World on the Family was given at a critical time. This document came out BEFORE all this became so widely the norm. Even in 1995, when it was given, the world still frowned on babies outside of marriage, abortion, homosexuality, at least to the degree that if you said you thought those things were wrong, you wouldn't be called a bigot. Today, if I stand up for morality, I'm called a bigot, even by members of my own faith. I'm denying someone else the right to make a choice if I vote against the legalization of abortion or homosexual marriage. These things are destroying the very sacred unit of the family, and the warning given at the end of the Proclamation is true: "we warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets." Yes, indeed, we've already seen some of that unfolding.

I decided today that I'm going to initiate a practice with my children. Every day when they arrive home from school, I'm going to ask them if they learned anything at school they found questionable, or that they have questions about. This will hopefully open a dialogue to discuss anything and everything they are learning at school so I might be able to correct misunderstanding or wrong ideas. If it gets too bad, this can be my gauge to determine whether or not homeschooling is appropriate.

We are up against Satan himself as he tears apart families and destroys that which is most sacred. I hope that I can raise my children to be strong against these waves and tides of inhumanity and remember the gospel doctrines that life is based upon.


swedemom said...

Well, you know how I feel about sex education, so I won't go there. :) But I find a lot to be concerned about, just as you do.

I am so upset with the NEA and the PTA national organizations. In fact, while I like the local organization of PTA, I'm rather opposed to being a part of it, because of the national immoral stance they've taken. So while I wouldn't pull my kids out of public school over sex education, I might pull them out of school because of the NEA's aggressive stances on morality and even political issues which should not concern them in the slightest.

Teaching at home is now more and more critical. We can't afford to simply rely on sunday school or primary to do our work. I really think that is one reason why the role of SAHMs is so crucial--we need to be there for our kids, to counteract the bombardment that they get everyday.

royalbird said...

I agree that our work in the home is critical. Sorry about the rant. No wonder these spirits reserved for these days have to be the strongest! I just hope I can be a good enough parent for their sake!

swedemom said...

No worries about the rant. It is scary to think about what we are fighting against. Especially when you consider that in the past, all of society was really intent on helping the family.

But I've also been thinking. Yes, we live in perilous times, but think about when our parents were teenagers or young adults, in the sixties. That was a hard time to face, hippies, drugs, free love, war protests, etc. Or when our grandparents were young, living during the Great depression, perhaps fighting against apathy, depression and losing hope. Then, coming through all of that, only to be thrown into a major world war which took the lives of so many young men. Or how about during the prohibition and the jazz age of the 20's? We sometimes think that the sixties started the love revolution, but there was a lot of experimentation going on in fast society. Or what about in Europe during World War I? Talk about a cultural revolution. Nearly an entire generation of young men were killed in the trenches. Literally hundreds of thousands of women were doomed to spinsterhood. The aftermath of WWI completely changed England's class system (some say for the better) and had a major impact on families. But even then, you could consider it progress. For in England, if you weren't well-born of a wealthy family you could work (read: slave) to a wealthy family. If you were a pretty girl, you were susceptible to unwanted attentions from your employer or his kids. And if you got pregnant, you could pretty much count on being a prostitute. Lovely life, eh?

In some ways, things were better in the U.S., but still so hard. I think that we need to be careful not to glamorize the past or mourn what we think we've lost, but instead "gird up our loins" to face the challenge of our day. Yes, we face moral decline. But we should be careful to avoid saying that our times are the most evil of all times. During Victorian England there were thousands of prostitutes living in the slums of London. A large percentage of them were children. Call me crazy, but that seems pretty morally depraved to me. The difference here is that evil isn't as hidden now. You used to have to go to an exclusive shop into a private room to get porn. Now you can download it on your phone. Drug use was once more or less hidden and now it stalks our small towns and villages.

Sorry, now THAT was a rant. I love discussing this with you.

royalbird said...

Yes, you are probably right. Every era has had and still has its challenges. I do think that the difference between our times and those times is how accepted the evil is. How we are told that we are stripping away people's freedoms if we disagree with their lifestyle choices, and I'm not just talking about the gay marriage issue. I guess when you think about it, life is hard no matter when you live. Still there are aspects of parenting today that really weigh me down with discouragement.


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