Fighting for Kids

La Shawn Barber of the epyomonous Corner notes that:

According to Nielsen Media Research, the television is on in the typical African-American home 11 hours, 10 minutes a day, compared with 7:34 in white homes. Nielsen translates that to 79 hours a week of TV in black homes compared with 52 hours a week of TV in white homes.

Well if Western Civilization falls, we’ll know why. We were slain by the effing boob tube.

The Anchoress is aghast and so should we all. The numskulls at the 9th circut have ruled:

there is no fundamental right of parents to be the exclusive provider of information regarding sexual matters to their children, either independent of their right to direct the upbringing and education of their children or encompassed by it.

and

In summary, we hold that 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” and that the asserted right is not encompassed by any other fundamental right. In doing so, we do not quarrel with the parents’ right to inform and advise their children about the subject of sex as they see fit.

What have they been smokin? Jouvenel (yes him again) noted at the start of Soveignty that today we seem to feel that morality is divorced from politics. After all at least half of this country would choke on their drink if they heard that we should expect our President to be our leader in the matter of morals and ethics. My guess that includes those on the 9th circuit. One wonders why they then expect an even less representative, more benighted, and certainly less successful bunch of ninnies (that would be those setting policies for our public schools) is in a position to be our moral guide in these dark times.

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8 comments

  1. David says:

    Have you read the opinion in the 9th Circuit case? It actually is quite a reasonable ruling. Though I do think that, in the nature of things, it is impossible to separate normative judgments from our schooling (after all, any curriculum choice is at some level a value decision), what was at issue here was not “moral guidance” in any sense of the term.

    The school district conducted a survey of its children dealing with early childhood trauma. Some of the questions had to do with sexual topics. The parents claimed that this breached their right to privacy (suddenly something conservatives champion?) by depriving them of their EXCLUSIVE right to present children with information relating to sexuality. The 9th circuit quite legitimately (and, I might add, in line with all the other circuit courts) held that parents cannot have an exclusive right to do this, at the point where the children enter a public space there is going to be information and this is unavoidable.

    Do you really think that there is any practical way to give parents the “exclusive” right to “control” their children’s upbringing? It sounds rather ridiculous to me.

  2. Race, Education, and Society

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  3. Mark says:

    David,
    Actually I haven’t read the case yet beyond the excerpts the Anchoress quoted, but today I also have read that the case concerned a consent form submitted to the parent for their 7/10 year old children which made no mention of sexual issues at all. And the questionaire asked IMHO very inappropriate questions to be posed for that age group.

    And I think vis a vis the right to privacy. Conservatives champion the right to raise our children in the way we see best. LAWYERS argue their cases in the most effective way they can.

    Consent was requested, informed consent was not made available to the parents. Do you support the states right to mislead parents?

  4. Ed Darrell says:

    Why should conservatives have a right to keep their child abuse secret from the child protection authorities? Why should anyone claim that as a right?

    The court actually said: “In summary, we hold that 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” and that the asserted right is not encompassed by any other fundamental right. In doing so, we do not quarrel with the parents’ right to inform and advise their children about the subject of sex as they see fit. We conclude only that the parents are possessed of no constitutional right to prevent the public schools from providing information on that subject to their students in any forum or manner they select. 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. Accordingly, the parent-appellants have failed to state a federal claim upon which relief may be granted. The decision of the district court is affirmed.”

    You can see here: http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/data2/circs/9th/0356499p.pdf

  5. Mark says:

    Ed,
    Finding “child abuse secret” is certainly not best done by a “survey” of opinions on sexuality given to 7 year olds. An attentive teacher would suffice.

    I think our culture is hyper-sexualized and dwells far too much on that subject. How would you suggest a parent try to shield their children from such material? One might argue that the survey was in fact a form of child sexual abuse in and of itself.

  6. J. Phillip says:

    I think you can make the argument that the survey is a form of child abuse as it pulls the child’s minds along sexual lines and requests the admission of highly personal information AND does not contribute to the child’s education. Those that will argue with me will argue on issues of fact not logic. Can you imagine the media outrage if the state tried to educate children’s lifestyles in a strictly fundamentalist Christian manner? The state should stay out of shaping sexual ideas of the citizenry.
    There’s a difference between mentioning the biological implications of STDs and getting involved in personal behaviors and feelings. Let the churches, families, and citizens strive over those issues.

  7. Liberal judicial inactivism!

  8. Swap Blog says:

    For The Kids

    Between Mark’s comments, La Shawn’s reporting on neilson ratings and TV watching facts, and The Anchoress talking about the 9th circuit and their decision that parents are not the primary agent responsible for their children, you get a good understan…