“Why Religious Literacy Matters”

21 06 2009
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Power of Story Behind Homeschool Regulation Psychology?

21 06 2009

Novelist Jodi Picoult profiled in today’s NYT Magazine:

. . .the enda[n]gered or ruined child has emerged as a media entity within a culture that has idealized the responsibilities of parenthood to a degree, as has been exhaustively noted, unprecedented in human history. The more we seek to protect our children, the more we fear the consequences of an inability to do so.

. . .the threat is found not so much in the wilderness of strangers and poorly vetted caregivers as it is within families, churches (Picoult’s book “A Perfect Match” deals with clerical sex abuse), schools and other narrowly circumscribed communities, in which insularity proves an ineffective mechanism of protection.

. . .It is worth noting that growth of children-in-peril literature (and its companion programming) has correlated with a rising judicial tendency to regard children as especially vulnerable victims.

Snook’s state (Nance and JJ both unschool in Florida) seems forever on the bleeding edge of child-in-peril psychology, as translated into social policy —

Community notification laws requiring law enforcement to make public information regarding registered sex offenders were introduced in the ’90s. By 2006, the federal Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, named after a 6-year old who was kidnapped from a Florida mall and killed 25 years earlier, strengthened registration requirements and increased punishment for crimes against children. Jessica’s Law, an aggressive 2005 Florida statue, copied by other states, did this as well, introducing a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years and a lifetime of electronic monitoring for adults convicted of “lewd or lascivious” acts against children under 12.

Yet here in Florida home education has been and remains less regulated than are places with far less dramatic true crime stories. Separation from both Church and State controls is respected, by law.

So it’s hard to know where the story will end. . .

See also Teach the Controversy: UN Convention on Rights of the Child

What’s Young and Stupid?  What’s Old Enough to Know Better

Spanking as Child Abuse?

Latest Homeschool FreakOut From World Net Daily

Right Thinking About Parent Rights: Polygamy and Homeschooling

No Perfect Protection for Our Kids But Better Thinking Would Help