One of the more reasonable sounding demands percolating out of the mass hysteria surrounding the recent premeditated mass murders committed by children, has been a renewed demand that parents be held accountable for the actions of their children. Personal accountability has always been a fundamental principle in our free society. As such it would seem appropriate to demand that the parents of these youthful killers be held accountable.
The problem with demanding that parents be held responsible is that in order for them to be responsible for the actions of their children, they must first possess the right and ability to effectively control the actions of their children. At times in the past parents, and even whole family groups, were routinely held directly and personally accountable for the actions of dependent children in their households. But then in the past the control exercised by parents over their children extended to literally encompass life and death itself.
In ancient times a variety of misdeeds by an individual could condemn his entire extended family to slavery or execution - even if that individual was still a dependent minor. History recounts cases where fear of what their mentally unbalanced child might do drove parents to kill their own offspring before their child could harm others, or otherwise bring dishonor on the family. Today a parent can end up in prison for simply spanking a misbehaving child.
Over the last couple of decades there has been an aggressive effort to restrict the rights and responsibilities of parents, and to undermine the fundamental social values parents have traditionally taught their children. There is now an alphabet soup of agencies at every level of government actively seeking any excuse to force themselves into the day to day lives of every family unfortunate enough to be accused of deviating from the official guidelines. In addition to government intrusions, there are also private activist groups seeking the legal power to impose their vision of child-care, regardless of resistance from parents or the personal grief and misery they cause.
One of the most heavily publicized offensives in the campaign to steal the nation's children from their parents has been Hillary Clinton's "It Takes a Village". The fact that Hillary Clinton didn't write the book that on the cover bears her name as author is only a tantalizing hint of the lies, deceptions, and emotional manipulations to be found between the covers. The damage this massive media campaign is intended to inflict on the family unit extends far beyond any money wasted to purchase the book Hillary didn't write, or the public funds diverted to support the President's wife's attacks on the nation's core values. The "It Takes a Village" campaign is intended to do nothing less than validate the idea that parents are incapable of raising their own children.
Public schools have become the primary tools in the concerted effort to gain control over the hearts and minds of our nation's children. There are both private and government sponsored nationwide networks that distribute packaged programs to schools. These programs are specifically designed to eliminate the values parents are attempting to teach to their offspring, and remold the children in the image desired by these self-appointed "agents of change".
In a recent article Thomas Sowell stated, "Most people have no idea how pervasive and unremitting are the efforts to drive a wedge between children and their parents and to replace parental influence with the influence of teachers, counselors and even the children's similarly immature peers. Many of the books, movies, and other materials used in the public schools mock parents as old windbags who are behind the times. 'Trust-building' exercises teach students to rely on their classmates."
Later in the same article Sowell went on to observe, "the materials used and the things said in these materials would simply have to be seen to be believed. I certainly would never have imagined such things before doing research for my book 'Inside American Education.' My assistant said she had trouble sleeping after seeing some of the movies shown to school children."
Expecting that parents would be outraged by what their children are being taught in school if the truth were ever discovered, the proponents of these prepackaged programs have conspired to keep parents from finding out what is being done to their children. Some of these programs even go so far as to provide manuals on how to conceal what is happening in the schools from parents and the public.
Reviled when it was viewed as exclusively the domain of totalitarian societies, the practice of pressuring children to inform against family members has become commonplace in American schools. Children are taught that a wide variety of previously normal parenting practices from spanking, to discussing controversial issues, to simply being excessively human in front of children, are all forms of abuse.
Children are aggressively "encouraged" to inform their teachers and other authority figures of any infractions they observe inside the privacy of their own homes, or those of their friends and relatives. And when a child is unwilling or unable to provide allegations of abuse against parents the authorities have predetermined to be guilty, false memories are too often provided by the interrogator. Any information the authorities can extract from a child, no matter how fanciful or coerced, is considered sufficient evidence to justify official intrusion.
Perhaps the most egregious subversion of the schools has been committed by drug prohibitionists in their zeal to turn children into spies and informants in their war on our civil liberties. Frustrated by constitutional protections against invading the privacy of citizens, government agents have been using the schools to train children to spy on their parents, and to perform exactly the sort of warrantless searches the government is specifically prohibited from performing.
Causing a child to grow up knowing he was the cause of his parent's incarceration and his own unhappy trek through the misery of the state's "alternative parenting" hell holes, has to be one of the worst traumas the state could inflict on a child. Knowing that agents of society exploited his unsuspecting childish innocence, casually subverting his trust in order to use him against his own family and make him the source of destruction for those most dear to him, is almost guaranteed to plant a burning hatred in the mind of the victim of such officially sanctioned abuse. A broad hatred of all aspects of the society that allowed such a violation. The kind of unfocused burning hatred that can later flare into indiscriminate violence.
But of course the state doesn't consider its own manipulation of a child in order to destroy his family to be child abuse like spanking. Those seeking to use children to further their own agenda have no interest in recognizing the damage they do - only in exercising whatever power they've managed to acquire no matter what harm they cause.
The one consistent characteristic of all those interfering with the rights and duties of parents is the absolute denial of any personal responsibility for the real world results of their interference. They delight in exercising omnipotent power over the lives of those who have fallen into their clutches, but they want no part of the real results of their capricious meddling in complex social dynamics that are far beyond their comprehension.
Not surprisingly, as control and responsibility have become increasingly separated, the children caught in the middle have been left without any meaningful moral or ethical foundations on which to build a functional understanding of the real world. Is it any wonder that some of them become sociopathic monsters devoid of any understanding of their actions?
And now that their interference has produced the worst possible results, is there any recognition of the flaws in their programs by the self-appointed "agents of change"? Is there any rational rethinking of the proper role of parents in the raising of children? None at all. The consistent response by those actually responsible for restricting the role of parents is a redoubled demand for more of the same - while at the same time demanding that parents be held responsible for the misdeeds of their alienated children. The advocates of the new world order only want the power - they want the responsibility for the tragedies they've created to remain with those they've stripped of power.
Parents will only be able to restore their proper role in their children's lives when they regain meaningful control over raising their children. There can't be any meaningful parental responsibility for a child's actions unless there is also meaningful parental control over the child.
The government has utterly failed as a surrogate parent. We need to restore the proper role of parents before more of the nation's children are sacrificed to the utopian delusions of those seeking control over society through control over our children.