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Posts Tagged ‘Children’

The Nation Turned Upside Down

In Uncategorized on April 29, 2015 at 7:53 am

wedding cakeby Diane Robertson

In the state of Oregon a husband can have extra marital affairs, leave his wife and children and have no legal consequences. His wife can claim emotional damage and suffering all day long, but she will never get any legal recourse. But if a baker refuses to make a wedding cake for a couple, and that couple happens to be homosexual, then there is immense legal recourse to make up for the “pain” they felt from being told, “no” to a cake.

In 2013, Aaron and Melissa Klein, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, which has since been shut down, denied lesbian couple Rachel Cryer and Laurel Bowmen a wedding cake. At the time, same sex marriage was not legal in Oregon.

Last week, a state administrative law judge recommended that Aaron and Melissa Klein be fined $135,000 for causing emotional suffering to Cryer and Bowman.

Alan McCullough, administrative law judge for Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries wrote, “[T]he forum concludes that $75,000 and $60,000, are appropriate awards to compensate [the same-sex couple] for the emotional suffering they experienced.”

One woman claimed that the cake refusal caused “acute loss of confidence,” “doubt,” “excessive sleep,” “felt mentally raped, dirty and shameful,” “high blood pressure,” “impaired digestion,” “loss of appetite,” “migraine headaches,” “pale and sick at home after work,” “resumption of smoking habit,” “shock” “stunned,” “surprise,” “uncertainty,” “weight gain” and “worry.”

Of course these charges are bogus. The conviction is bogus. Everyone at some point in their lifetime has been refused something. It’s not emotionally damaging. It certainly does not cause a couple $135,000 worth of harm. This has everything to do with intimidating the populace to be quiet and do as the state tells them or be destroyed.

On the other hand, the emotional damage that no fault divorce has caused for families and society is immense. It takes a lifetime for children to get over the divorce of their parents. Yet, the laws do not compensate for this. Indeed our nation has been turned upside down.

3 Ways Gay Marriage Has Changed Canada

In Uncategorized on April 15, 2015 at 7:02 am

gay rights in canadaDiane Robertson

In 2005, Canada quietly legalized gay marriage. Unlike the United States, there was never a fight or a court case, or really much ado about it. It just happened. And since then, we haven’t heard if gay marriage changed anything about Canada. Until now…

Canadian citizen and daughter of a gay man, Dawn Stefanowicz, has begun to discuss not only her life as a child of a gay man, but what gay marriage has done to Canada. These are 3 ways gay marriage has changed all of Canadian society.

  1. Parenting: The laws surrounding parenthood and parental rights immediately changed.The bill that legalized gay marriage (Bill C-38) included a provision to redefine parenthood from “natural parents” to “legal parents”. Children no longer have a legal right to both their biological parents. And biological parents no longer have a legal right to their children.Additionally, same sex marriage has infringed upon important parental rights for all parents. The Human Rights Commission began regulating parents’ ability to teach their children their beliefs, opinions, and faith if the parents’ beliefs are different from what the schools teach and promote.

    Stefanowicz explains:

    “If you teach your children that same-sex sexual relationships are wrong and that every child has a father and a mother, and that only man-woman sex in marriage is allowed, you run the risk of thought police questioning your beliefs, especially if your children discuss these subjects in the classroom.


Consequently, parents experience state interference when it comes to moral values and teachings about family, parenting and sex education in schools.”

  1. Speech: Hate speech became a crime in 2004. Hate speech can be defined as anyone disagreeing with homosexual behavior. Though the hate speech section of the law was repealed for 2014, most provinces have additional hate speech laws that have the same effect. Before the repeal, the Human Rights Commissions of Canada had a 100% conviction rate. If someone filed a “hate speech” complaint against someone, that person had to pay tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees. The Human Rights Commission still has power to enter private residences and remove anything pertinent to an investigation involving speech. This has essentially nullified the ability for Canadians to speak and write freely including on the internet.The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission has censored all media. Broadcasting licenses can be revoked if a television or radio station airs anything that can be considered anti-lgbt.
  2. Religious Freedom: Employers, business owners and all alike whether large, small, in home, or family owned do not have the freedom to deny any service to LGBT for religious reasons. There has been no wedding cake battle in Canada. It’s just illegal. In fact, what is preached in churches can be brought before the Human Rights Commission.Again, Stefanowicz explains:“Freedom to assemble and speak freely about man-woman marriage, family and sexuality are restricted. Activists often sit in on religious assemblies, listening for anything discriminatory towards GLBT, so a complaint can be made to the Human Rights Commission. Most faith communities have become politically correct to avoid fines and loss of charitable status.”


It has been ten years since gay marriage became legal in Canada. Since that time laws that offered freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and religious freedom have essentially been overturned in favor of protecting the feelings of a very small part of the Canadian population. The rights of parents and children have been trampled. A change in marriage laws affects all in a nation. A nation cannot redefine family, the basic unit of society, without serious consequences for everyone.

“We are Family”

In Uncategorized on December 4, 2014 at 11:01 am

grandpa and grandaughter

Rebecca Mallory

If you remember this great number 1 hit from “Sister Sledge” in the ’70’s, then that dates us both!  (I always thought it was “The Pointer Sisters” who sang that. Nope!)  We are family. Sometimes I sit in church looking at the congregation. Sweet and loving families behaving perfectly, and dressed in Sunday’s finest. Is this what perfect families look like? Or is this an illusion?

What does the “perfect” family look like? I have no idea. In fact, I’m pretty sure they don’t exist! We’ve all heard talks, read stories, or have even known families that were darn close though, right? Do you notice common themes in these families?  I recently heard an interview between Glenn Beck and Bruce Feiler, that I found most fascinating about successful families. I’ll bet you’ll be surprised at what they discovered.

Bruce Feiler is a nationally recognized author and TV personality that writes about contemporary life. He is one of “only a handful” of writers to have six consecutive New York Times nonfiction best-sellers in the last decade. He writes the “This Life” column in the Sunday New York Times and also hosts a show on PBS. It was his latest book, “Secrets of Successful Families,” that he was discussing with Glenn on his morning radio show one day.  Fieler’s findings were pretty amazing.

There are common threads that run in most successful families.  Some of these include:  Successful families learn to adapt all the time. They talk and communicate. They often discuss what it means to be part of a family. They go out and play together. Very simple things but with our ever-increasing crazy busy lives, easy to let slip.

Feiler lists three typical family narratives:

1) Ascending: “We started with nothing, we worked hard and climbed to the top. Now we have everything.

2) Descending: We started off with everything. We had it all. But then our house burned down, my wife died of cancer, we lost everything.

3) Oscillating: grandfather was president of a bank, then the bank collapsed. His son was a professional baseball player but was killed in a plane crash, etc. Life ebbs and flows. We have ups and downs. Those who understand that most families fit into this narrative, take comfort in knowing that they’re not alone; that past family members have dealt with similar problems and have just plain figured it out and weathered those storms.

Understanding these crucial solutions is vital but, the number one indicator of a successful family was that they knew their family’s history. Isn’t that interesting? Feiler referenced a test that was done by Emory University and administered to hundreds of children. They were asked questions like,

“Where did your dad grow up?

How did your parents meet?

Did you ever have a relative that overcame a serious illness or other tremendous odds?

Where was your grandmother born?

The children who were best able to deal with stress and difficulty in their lives were the ones with the highest scores on this test -those who knew their family history. These children believed that they could control their own lives; that they could figure life out and come up with viable solutions to their problems. These were children that when in “crisis” mode, they figured it out instead of continuing, and thinking that life would surely end with this seemingly insurmountable  problem. In fact, Emory University went on to say that compared to most other psychological tests given to these same children, knowing their family history was the # 1 predictor of a child’s well-being and ability to adapt to different situations they faced through life. Everyone has these oscillating life experiences. They are what build our character and prepare us with the “armor” we need as life gets even more challenging.

What kind of a parent are you?

As a parent it pained me deeply to see one of my little girls “walking into a fire” or heading straight for a cliff otherwise known as a potential problem. I realize now that I was probably the poster mother for “helicopter” parent before that term was popular in describing one who flies to the rescue to save their little darlings from every potentially harmful situation.

WHY Do we do that? Obviously, we do not want to see our children hurt but these valuable life experiences are what they personally need to learn, gain character, stamina, and be able to face a tough world on their own someday.

Feiler strongly warns against stepping in to bail out our children in these situations. Like when they fail to study for a test or choose not to do their homework or fulfill an assignment. Let them suffer the consequences for their actions. Otherwise, you could be teaching your kid, “Hey, nothing is your responsibility. Mommy will take care of everything and protect you from all the boo boos and owies in the world.”  How unrealistic is that?

I remember playing an unsuccessful game of “chicken” on icy Utah roads with a high school friend until we hit head on and wrecked both cars. I was way more afraid of my dad than any policeman. He was in no way abusive but demanded respect and a certain behavior from his daughter. Especially when behind the wheel of a car! I paid for that one for a while. Guess what? It never happened again. I was held responsible. I love my dad for teaching me that life lesson. And I’m grateful that I know his history of hard work, success and failure in business, and that he managed to pull himself up by the bootstraps to figure it out. I also felt loved and secure in who I was and what was expected.

They won’t know unless you tell them

This Christmas season I would challenge all of us to give the gift of family history to our children and families. I do a “12 Days of Christmas” with my children and grand children. Last year I typed up a little story about how their Papa and I met. They loved it! I was mildly surprised at the reaction. Some things you just assume your kids know. Pretty sure they weren’t there at the time! They won’t know unless you tell them. These are valuable and priceless stories.

So let’s return to good old American ingenuity and rugged individualism. Let your kids know of your own successes and failures and the faith and hope that got you through. What lessons did you learn through child and adulthood that got you to where you are now? You’ll be giving a priceless gift to them as well as yourself. Hey! Get out your platforms and bell bottoms and boogie down to “We are Family!” The kids will dig it.

Common Core: Removing Creativity

In Child Development, Diane Robertson, Education, Families, Government, Research, Schools, The Family, Values on April 30, 2014 at 7:36 am

children at playDiane Robertson

Many parents across the nation are wary, worried, and bemused by the new Common Core standards. An important part of Common Core is the standardized testing. To prepare students for the tests, school administrators are enforcing strict instruction for much of the school day. One such school, the Harley Avenue Primary School in Elwood, N.Y. has cancelled the spring kindergarten play because the school administration feels that 5 and 6 year old kids preforming a play will adversely affect their “college preparedness”.

A letter sent to parents states:

“The reason for eliminating the Kindergarten show is simple. We are responsible for preparing children for college and career with valuable lifelong skills and know that we can best do that by having them become strong readers, writers, coworkers and problem solvers.”

Really?? Reading and memorizing lines, learning to follow instructions, practicing and rehearsing, as well as preforming and speaking in front of strangers is going to delay 5 and 6 year old children’s reading, writing, and problem solving skills? Perhaps, the administrators are actually worried about how their kindergarteners will perform on the common core tests rather than how well they are preparing these kids for college.

Rob Saxton, deputy superintendent of public instruction in Oregon, and Jada Rupley, state department early learning system director, wrote an op-ed for The Oregonian lamenting the lack of skills Oregon kindergarten students had. They really want children test ready at 5 years old. However, research is teaching us that play and minimal instruction are actually the best ways for young children to learn.

MIT professor Laura Schulz, her graduate student Elizabeth Bonawitz, and their colleagues conducted a study with 4 year old children and a simple toy. One group of kids were shown how to play with the toy and another group of kids were introduced to the toy, but not shown how it worked. The group given the instruction played with the toy exactly as shown. The second group explored the toy and were able to make parts of it work that the first group didn’t even try. This study is significant. Given the opportunity to explore, children learn more and become better problem solvers. Yet Common Core is seeking to remove all forms of creativity from the classroom and have the children sit for hours of instruction.

Removing creativity from the classroom is discouraging reading, writing, and problem solving rather than encouraging it. By making test performance a main focus of education, the government leaders and school administrators, who are pushing Common Core, are dumbing down the children of our nation.

 

Babies Don’t Keep

In Child Development, Families, Grandparents, motherhood, Parenting, The Family, Values on April 29, 2014 at 4:29 pm
dont_keepLiz Mackay
 

It was a typical Monday morning with children to awaken and help prepare for the day, lunches to pack, laundry to oversee, vacuuming to start. As I moved forward to accomplish these needed tasks, my two youngest children kept coming up and petitioning me to play a game with them, or to build a fort with them, or to go outside and play. 

My response was the same for the first several requests, “Honey, I am busy at the moment. When I am done with this work, I will come and play.”

It was then that the last two lines of the poem Song for a Fifth Child came into my head:

So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.

I’m rocking my baby and babies don’t keep.

I never knew the whole poem as a child. My mother always would say the last two lines whenever there was a baby that needed to be rocked. However, it wasn’t just when a baby needed to be rocked, it was when one of us needed to be snuggled or hugged or kissed better or listened to as our whole world was crashing down around us.

I know that the problems we had as children weren’t life threatening, but my mother always made sure that we knew whatever was so important to us was just as important to her.

When I got to be an older child, I asked her why. Her reply was simple, “‘So quiet down cobwebs, Dust go to sleep. I’m rocking my baby, and babies don’t keep.’ You children grow up so fast, and I know there will be a time when you won’t want to tell me everything—that I may not be your first confidante—so I cherish this time that you have as a child and don’t want to miss it. Everything else can wait; it’s not as important as you.”

Again as I listened to my child petition me for my attention, I thought about my mother and the words she would sing. I turned to my children to see what I could help them with; everything else can wait.

So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.

I’m rocking my baby and babies don’t keep.

 

Today’s post is written by Liz Mackay and contributed by Seeing the Everyday magazine. For more information, go to seeingtheeveryday.com

The Entitled Generation

In Child Development, Education, Families, father, Grandparents, motherhood, Parenting, The Family, Values on February 19, 2013 at 8:29 am

mom-with-children-working-together

Rachel Allison

I’m visiting my daughter and son-in-law this week in Wisconsin.  During the course of our telephone conversation weeks ago, I asked my daughter what her children needed…new nightgowns or skirts?  They love Nana’s home-sewn flannel nightgowns and “twirly” skirts. I was surprised when she responded, “Mom don’t bring them anything.” She recognized the surprise in my voice, and went on to explain.  She was reading the book “The Entitlement Trap” by Richard and Linda Eyre, and she said that she is determined not to raise her children with an entitlement mentality. Apparently, the giving of non-birthday/Christmas gifts can lend itself to that entitlement thinking that she is so opposed to?

I arrived at the airport empty handed and my sweet grandchildren were still eager to see me.  We have had a great time together these past six days. Watching my daughter mold and teach her four children has been extremely rewarding.  They have family responsibilities and daily household chores.  They go to the chore chart every day and take their respective duties in stride. If they choose not to do their work, another chore is added.  They seemingly take this extra chore in stride also…after all it was their decision to procrastinate.  I have been amazed at their acceptance of both personal responsibility and the consequences of careless attention to that responsibility.

Needless to say, I was intrigued as to how our daughter has instilled this attitude into children so young.  Her three oldest are 7 ½, 6, and 4 ½.

I did a little research on the Eyre’s, and I would like to share an interview I found that explained how they came to understand the need for change in this modern world of child entitlement.  The Eyres have lectured and held conferences on parenting worldwide. They have encountered parents from every ethnicity, creed, and culture, and they have learned that all parents everywhere basically have the same parental aspirations and face the same parenting challenges.  These are questions the Eyre’s are often asked?

“Why won’t my kids put in the effort at school to reach their full potential?”

“Why won’t they pick up their clothes or put away their toys?”

“Why do they sometimes make such obviously bad and foolish choices?”

“Why do they think they need to have everything their friends have?”

“Why is it so hard for me to influence my kids . . . and so easy for their peers to influence them?”

“Why can’t I get them to set some goals and to start feeling responsible for their lives?…Or to work and to follow through on their tasks?”

“Why can’t I get them away from games and gadgets, from cell phones and headphones?”

“Why is it so hard to communicate with my kids?”

“And why is it so hard to teach them responsibility?”

Their interview continues:

“…the interesting thing is that these questions, shared by today’s parents, were not the prime questions of parents one or two generations ago. Yesterday’s kids had a much greater sense of personal responsibility than today’s kids. Think how things have changed: When your grandparents were young, children often worked for their parents; now parents work for their kids. When your parents were children, it took more work to keep a household going than it does now, and kids did a lot of that work. And even when you were a child, there was some sense that kids owed a lot to their parents; now parents seem to think they owe everything to their kids.

Two Parenting Epiphanies: The Problem Of Entitlement And The Solution Of Ownership

Frankly, we were a little slow to see the picture clearly — the picture of what is happening to this generation of kids. We had been writing and speaking to parents about responsibility and values for more than a decade, and then one evening, as we heard those same questions about laziness and messiness and bad choices and lack of motivation for the umpteenth time from another large audience of parents in another large auditorium, we had a parenting epiphany:

We realized that all the questions hinge on the same problem —

and the problem is entitlement.

“Entitlement” is the best name we know for the attitude of children who think they can have, should have, and deserve whatever they want, whatever their friends have — and that they should have it now and not have to earn it or give up anything for it.

And it goes beyond having to behaving. They think they should be able to do whatever they want, whatever their friends do, now, and without a price.

This sense of entitlement contributes mightily to sloppiness, to low incentive, to boredom, to bad choices, to instant gratification, to constant demands for more, and to all kinds of addictions (including the addiction to technology).

Perhaps the biggest problem with entitlement is that under its illusions, there seem to be no real consequences in life and no motivation to work for anything. Someone will always bail you out, get you off the hook, buy you a new one, make excuses for you, give you another chance, pay your debt, and hand you what you ask for.

Entitlement is a double-edged sword (or a double-jawed trap) for kids. On one edge it gives kids all that they don’t need — indulgence, dullness, conceit, and laziness; and on the backswing, it takes from them everything they do need — motivation, independence, inventiveness, pride, responsibility, and a chance to really work for things and to build their own sense of fulfillment and self-esteem.

As we worked with our own children on the problem of entitlement, and as we focused more attention on it in our lectures and seminars on teaching values and responsibility, we had a second parenting epiphany… It was simply that

feelings of entitlement are always connected to a

lack of work and sacrifice and ownership.

When people (adults or kids) don’t work for something, or give up anything for it, they never feel the pride of owning it or the will to care for and develop it. We began to understand that a sense of ownership is the antidote to entitlement, and from that point on, we have been developing methods to help children feel the responsibility of ownership.

There is a gap between being a child and being an adult, a space, a breach, a journey … and how and when it is crossed will make all the difference in your own happiness and in that of your child.

In many parts of the world, particularly the third world, kids are forced to jump the gap too fast or too soon. Because of poverty or the absence of parents, they have to play the role of adults while they are still children, missing out on much of the joy and learning of childhood.

But in most of contemporary society, it is the opposite — children seem never to grow up because parents do everything for them, give everything to them, over-serve and overindulge, allowing them to avoid responsibility, to “move back in,” and to essentially continue to be children.

Modern parents in America and Europe and most other developed countries unwittingly promote the worst of both worlds by giving their children license too early and responsibility too late. They allow their kids to do many things before they are emotionally and socially ready. And yet at the same time, parents (and the society around them) give kids a sense of entitlement that allows them to avoid most of the accountability and ownership that would help them become responsible adults.

It is because of this environment of entitlement that parenting is a bigger challenge now than it has ever been.

We are going to be blunt with you. We are going to answer the question of where this sense of entitlement comes from — and most of the answer is you! We are going to tell you what to stop doing. But we are also going to tell you what to start doing and how to replace your child’s sense of entitlement with a sense of ownership and responsibility. It is not an easy transition, but it can be an enormously enjoyable and worthwhile one that will affect your child’s whole life (not to mention yours!). (Deseret News, September 9, 2011)

My hope is that the Eyre interview has helped you realize that attitudes of entitlement can be corrected.  For those of you desperately searching for help with your children, may I suggest you purchase “The Entitlement Trap,” by Richard and Linda Eyre.  If its suggestions and guidelines will do for your children what it has done for my grandchildren, you and your children will be tremendously rewarded.

 

Reader Poll: “If genetic engineering were to give parents the ability to screen out ‘personality flaws’ in their children, would you take advantage of it?”

In Eugenics, Parenting, Polls on August 24, 2012 at 9:38 pm

Here’s the question we asked UFI readers:

“If genetic engineering were to give parents the ability to screen out ‘personality flaws’ in their children, would you take advantage of it?”

Here’s how readers responded:

0   Percent           Yes

97 Percent           No

3 Percent             Unsure

If given the opportunity, it’s pretty clear that  UFI readers would have no interest in tinkering with their children’s personalities via genetic engineering.  But an Oxford professor thinks that you have a “moral obligation” to do so.  After all, it is only responsible parenting to create “ethically better children,” Professor Julian Savulescu claims.

Through what he calls “rational design” he thinks we could have less violent, more intelligent, more pleasant people – in short, a better society.  Evidently the technology to accomplish this is close at hand.

Professor Savulescu argues that there is no reason why we shouldn’t be willing and indeed, motivated, to create people who are less likely to harm themselves and others.  You can read more about it here.  And then tell us what you think?

Good idea?  Bad idea?  and why.

 

 

Children of Divorce Suffer more Strokes

In Divorce, Families, Marriage, Research on January 10, 2011 at 6:33 am

Unfortunately, the bad news for children of divorce continues to pile up.  This time a new study showing that children whose parents divorce are more than twice (2.2 times) as likely to suffer a stroke at some point during their lives as children who grew up in intact homes.

The study was done by researchers at University of Toronto and was based on 13,000 people living in Canada who had taken part in the 2005 Canadian Health Survey. The association between stroke and being a child of divorce remained even when accounting for traditional stroke risk factors, such as smoking, obesity and diabetes.

The researchers point out that many of the children of divorce who suffered a stroke were born in 1940 or earlier and that the negative stigma of divorce back then might be a contributing factor to the increased risk of stroke.  Also, childhood income was not part of the current data; so more research needs to be done to identify if poverty could be a contributing factor.

Lead researcher, Esme Fuller-Thomson, was quick to point out that her study showed an association between divorce and stroke, not that divorce causes strokes, and findings would be need to be replicated in other studies before more solid conclusions could be drawn.

“More Trick than Treat:” UNICEF Loses Sight of Their Mission

In Abortion, Sanctity of Life, Sex Education, UN on October 25, 2010 at 6:05 pm

It was 60 years ago this month when the United Nations Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF) began their highly successful “Trick or Treat for UNICEF” campaign.  Several generations of Halloween-costumed children have carried the orange donation boxes door to door to help children in countries around the world receive food, vaccinations, health care, and education.  Yet, few understand that some 25 years ago, UNICEF adopted another vision for their efforts, one that includes carrying the banner for radical feminists, promoting abortion and enticing children to engage in promiscuity and risky sexual behaviors.

Before your children get involved in a school group devoted to UNICEF, or they pick up a donation box for trick or treating, please be aware of the current thrust of UNICEF.

History:  Once a Leading Advocate for Children Now a Major Promoter of Anti-family Positions

– In 1946, UNICEF founded to provide medicine and food to stave off starvation in post-war Europe; very effective in their efforts.

– In 1953, original name–United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund””changed to UN Children’s Fund (original acronym, UNICEF, retained)

– In the 1950’s, UNICEF was a leader in combating epidemics and disease with the distribution of vaccines and penicillin.  They also began to assist women in childbirth and developed a philosophy that embraced maternity.

– The 1960’s brought UNICEF heavily into the education world with 43 percent of their budget devoted to it.

– In 1970’s, branched out into infrastructure and providing a clean water supply

– In 1980’s,  Under the leadership of James Grant, targeted life and death interventions with GOBI (growth monitoring, oral rehydration, breast feeding, immunizations/vaccines)

– 1990s to present: embraces radical feminism and emphasizes “girl-child” and “reproductive and sexual rights.”
For a more thorough review of UNICEF’s history and dealings, see the well-document white paper prepared by Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute:  http://www.c-fam.org/docLib/20080424_Number_3_UNICEF_2003.pdf

Focus on the “Girl-Child:” UNICEF Not Concerned About Boys?

The UNICEF mandate to aid children was best accomplished by assisting women in their role as mothers and UNICEF had a decidedly “maternal” focus.  You can see that reflected in GOBI and especially the focus on breastfeeding.  During the late 1970’s and 80’s, as the feminist movement began to gain strength and moved into the UN system, feminist leaders began to exert influence with the UNICEF Executive Board.  Feminist ideology was not aligned with the notion of mothers remaining in their traditional domestic roles with an exclusive focus on the welfare of their children. UNICEF began to realize that feminism, to the degree it would divert attention from meeting the essential needs of children, was not compatible with the mission of UNICEF.

That gulf was eventually bridged, however, by the notion of the “girl child.”  In the world of “gender” politics that was an acceptable approach””focusing on girls and thus the lifecycle of women and increasing their rights””would allow both factions to rededicate themselves to helping children; but only one half of children.  Programs were devised and monies flowed towards programs directed at girls.  A search of UNICEF’s website for the word “girls” vs. “boys” will give you just a glimpse of that continued lopsided approach.

Abortion and “Reproductive Rights”

Although UNICEF denies supporting abortion, their record shows otherwise.  Here are just a few examples.

– In 2004, they actively opposed a New Zealand proposal that would have required parental consent for underage girls seeking abortion.

– In 2007, UNICEF was a sponsor of a global initiative now called “Women Deliver” calling for worldwide legalized abortion in an effort to promote maternal and child health care.

– Just last year (2009), they lobbied against language in the Dominican Republic’s new constitution that would have protected life “from conception until death” asking legislators to instead liberalize abortion laws.

– UNICEF continues to work closely with UNFPA another UN agency that actively promotes abortion and population control programs.

UNICEF is an opportunistic advocate for the spread of abortion rights.  Their denial of that support and their promotion of abortion is based on semantics and cleverly worded distortion of the facts surrounding their actual activities and expenditures of money.  However, we do want to give credit where credit is due.   This past spring, at Canada’s G-8 maternal health summit, UNICEF called for an end to the rancorous debate over abortion asking all parties to move forward by addressing specifically ways to save the lives of mothers and children in the developing world.

Condoms, Sexual Rights, and Graphic Sexual Materials

When HIV/AIDs became a worldwide health issue, UNICEF became heavily involved with condom distribution and the delivery of sexual information to children–some of it decidedly anti-family and unsavory.
In 2002, United Families International was the first to expose a UNICEF-funded book prepared for Latin America that encourages children to engage in sexual activities with other minors, homosexual sex, and bestiality. The book’s title (Spanish translation) “Theoretic Elements for Working with Mothers and Pregnant Teens” emphasizes that “Reproductive health includes the following components:  Counseling on sexuality, pregnancy, methods of contraception, abortion, infertility, infections and diseases.” An accompanying workbook instructs:

“Situations which you can obtain sexual pleasure:  1. Masturbation 2.  Sexual relations with a partner””whether heterosexual, homosexual or bisexual 3. A sexual response that is directed towards inanimate objects, animals, minors, non-consenting persons.”

Two years earlier another controversial UNCIEF sexual education manual was distributed in El Salvador and they also were a backer of a controversial website for South African youth that uses the name LoveLife.

This past August, UNICEF was one of the sponsors of a “World Conference for Youth” in preparation for the upcoming “International Year of Youth.”  At that event, full sexual rights and freedoms were graphically promoted.  For a full description of the event and the exhibition displays go here.

Focus on “Children’s Rights” Rather Than Children’s Needs
UNICEF’s mission of direct action and service to children in need has shifted towards a stated policy of the promotion of controversial “child rights.” This new direction shifts emphasis away from providing services to children in need and focuses, instead, on programs that advance sexual and reproductive rights for children, displaces parental rights, and pushes child autonomy””we believe to their detriment.

Richard Horton, editor of the British medical journal, The Lancet””hardly a bastion of conservatism””speaking on UNICEF deviation from its original mission stated:

“This rights-based approach to the future of children fits well with the zeitgeist of international development policy. But a preoccupation with rights ignores the fact that children will have no opportunity for development at all unless they survive. The language of rights means little to a child stillborn, an infant dying in pain from pneumonia, or a child desiccated by famine. The most fundamental right of all is the right to survive. Child survival must sit at the core of UNICEF’s advocacy and country work. Currently, and shamefully, it does not…  [UNICEF] has failed to address the essential health needs of children.”

Find Another Way to Donate to Children’s Welfare

The propaganda publicized by UNICEF for this project has deceived many schools and parents into encouraging children to participate in what looks like children helping children.  The truth is, most of these same adults would be horrified to know that their encouragement actually promotes abortion and sexual rights for children through programs that are being fueled by the donations received from children on Halloween.

The original mandate to provide basic health care and education services to the poor children of the world has been diluted by UNICEF and in its place is the destruction of millions of unborn children.  It is a cynical program that uses children to promote sexual promiscuity that negatively impacts children and families.

Conclusion

Caring parents should carefully consider the other options available for their efforts to needy children.  Thankfully there are many humanitarian programs worthy of support and funding as they assist disadvantaged children while promoting family friendly values.  United  Families understands the importance of saving lives while promoting positive behaviors that strengthen families. That is why United Families founded and has championed the “Stay Alive” HIV/AIDS Prevention Education Program for many years which has reached close to a million children in Africa.    Designed to reach children ages 9-14, Stay Alive empowers them to make positive choices before they reach the age of sexual activity. Stay Alive helps children focus on the goal of “living a long, loving life”.  The program teaches that the only sure way to avoid contracting the HIV virus is to avoid sexual contact before marriage, to marry someone who is disease-free, and to stay faithful to that partner throughout their “long, loving life”.

Stay Alive is a worthy alternative to the agenda driven, UNICEF programs we have described.  Your support for it and other UFI programs can teach your children the importance of family and the benefits of constructively helping children around the world.  Click here to donate today!

Pornography Addiction: The New Drug

In Child Development, Education, Families, Media, Pornography on February 19, 2010 at 4:26 pm

As media has become more accessible to us, the $57 billion world wide pornography industry has crept into our homes through TV, magazines and especially the Internet.

Pornography addiction has become an ever increasing problem throughout the world. Over 40 million adults in the US regularly visit pornography sites.

However the largest consumers of Internet pornography are the 12-17 age groups, mostly while doing homework. 90% of teens have viewed pornography online, which illustrates the importance of education for parents and teens on how to tread cautiously online.

Launched this month, the PornHarms website is dedicated to “providing the most accurate peer-reviewed research on the harm from pornography, along with relevant news and opinion.” The idea for the site was created when unable to find accurate research about the troubles of pornography.

“Since the advent of the internet, pornography has flooded homes, businesses, public libraries and even schools. The results have been devastating to the social and family fabric of America,” site creator Patrick Trueman stated.

PornHarms is not the only website fighting against pornography. A non-profit group based in Utah Fight the New Drug has recently launched an international campaign for pornography addiction awareness. They compare pornography addiction to the use of hard drugs such as heroine and crystal meth.

Pornography addiction is an ever growing problem that we all need to be educated about.

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