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Fatal Exposure: Who Owns Our Kids? Parents or Schools?

“And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4).

Highly sexualized material has a way of lodging in the mind. It is addictive and it leads to compulsive behavior. As we are instructed in 2 Corinthians 10, verses 4 and 5, we should be trying to demolish strongholds, not create new ones.

I have become increasingly aware of some of the very graphic materials being distributed to school students in America. This is a very serious matter. Some of the material that they are reading could not be quoted on the radio or in this magazine. In fact the language is so degrading that it could not even be quoted on secular radio stations.

I am not a prude. I see nothing wrong with teaching school students about human reproduction. I taught Health and Hygiene to high-schoolers in a Christian school in Tennessee. When presented in the context of covenant marriage, this is an important part of the curriculum.

If you think about it, the average child in the U.S. has countless opportunities for exposure to sexualized messages every day. Television, music, billboards, print media, internet, cell phones and communications devices, movies, and of course, interaction with peers and adults expose kids to a lot. Even little children ask questions that can often take an adult by surprise. It is important, however, that what we teach is age-appropriate and designed to meet the needs of students in a particular age group. You don’t have to teach everything to little children, and you don’t have to answer questions that are not asked.

Unfortunately, this exposure to sexualized messages occurs far too frequently without the guidance and intervention from parents that is necessary to help children sort through and make sense of it all. And yet, too many parents never ask their kids what they are learning in school. In fact, in some cases school teachers tell their students not to tell parents what they are learning about the human body because “parents don’t really understand.”

Reading material that is filled with sexual violence and perversion serves no useful purpose even though, as is often claimed by public school educators, “this book received a literary award.”
Just look at what organization gave the award and you will quickly know that it is an organization that does not represent your values.

It is a mystery to me, and also to many of the parents to whom I have spoken, how obscene materials can be considered age-appropriate and meet the needs of students. People who write stuff like this for consumption for little children have a problem. What drives them to write obscene material is not the desire to help little children, but the desire to satisfy some craving. They don’t need to be in a classroom and they don’t need to be writing materials for children.

We can argue forever about the pros and cons of kids being exposed to smut, but the most effective argument against such is the condition of American society at the present time. Violence, crime, cutting, suicide, pedophilia, is commonplace. I have a Christian friend who works as a psychiatrist for the state of  Oklahoma. All too many young people are in deep emotional trouble.

Why do educators insist on poisoning the minds of young people when we see its harmful effects? If you drink a glass of dirty water and it makes you vomit, should you drink another glass of the same water?

Parents who speak out against obscene materials are often bullied and are given a strange look which says, “Where did you come from?” Parents often feel that they become a target for the progressives who support public education and minimize parental rights.

Even parents who do careful research and write articles and commentary in the local newspapers are amazed that their well-researched, truthful comments make them the objects of emotional and hateful rhetoric. They find it hard to believe that they want to protect their kids and yet they are regarded as troublemakers who need to either grow up or shut up.

Parents often tell me that they don’t want to make waves because they don’t want their kids to be singled out. But if enough parents make waves and stand their ground, those who critique them will be the ones singled out.

It happens every time, with every social issue. The progressives are the most hateful, despicable, mean-spirited people you can find. Though they speak about freedom of speech and democracy, they are really Nazis. They break the windows of churches that are publicly pro-life and write hateful graffiti on the property of pro-life pregnancy centers. A good example is radical, left-wing California governor Gavin Newsom who said his state would no longer do business with Walgreens after the drugstore announced that it would cease selling the do-it-yourself-home abortion pill in some Republican states.

Newsom sought to claim the moral high ground when he claimed Republicans are ignoring the needs of women. The fact is, however, that women who use the pill can have a number of dangerous reactions. Some even die. Newsom’s moral high ground doesn’t exist.

The obscenity that kids are being exposed to is just part of the downward moral trends in our society. We keep on compromising on important issues.

When I was young, I knew some kids who smoked pot. They were all alike: failing in school, in poor health and had no real future in our society.  Now, however, states are seeking to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. We hear how good marijuana is. Legalizing it will free up police so they can do real police work. Yes, marijuana will create real police work. It’s called crime.

That doesn’t discourage the progressives, however. The State of Colorado is considering allowing small amounts of cocaine and heroin in an individual’s possession without it being considered a felony. Yes, the downward plunge into cultural disintegration is continuing.

A foundational issue is this: “Who owns your kids?” Do the parents determine what is appropriate for them or does the school?

Christian parents need to get back to the basics: Parents are responsible for raising their kids, not the school, and certainly not the state. The secular world disagrees and believes that parents are ill-suited to raise their kids. The progressives believe that they and they alone are enlightened, and will care for kids in a way that is good for them. It’s time for parents to put their foot down. The secular world has done nothing for society but to create confusion, crime and despair. ●

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Larry Spargimino

Dr. Larry Spargimino is co-host of the SWRC broadcast and joined the ministry in 1998. Larry researches and writes books and articles for the ministry, assists on tours, and helps answer listeners' theological questions when they call the ministry. Larry holds a doctorate from Southwestern Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, and pastors a local church.

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