Bek's lab

"Sometimes it's best to get your walls knocked down, lose your most cherished constructs, and be fully swept away." --How to Live at the Beach, by Sandy Gingras

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Location: Kailua, HI, United States

I'm a stay-at-home momma to 2 little ones, military spouse, and distributor for Young Living, cooking up new DIY recipes for house and home.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Can we please find some logical middle ground?

I had saved a few news articles lately that I wanted to comment on, but I felt so strongly about this that I couldn't postpone it.
I started another post similar to this one not too long ago...Do you remember middle school? What was on your mind when you were 11? How mature were you? Do you think you were still a child? I was!
I don't know where you get your news, but I didn't see this story tonight on either or I searched out an article to post here myself. I heard it first yesterday on Glenn Beck, and then today on CNN a few times. It's about a middle school in Portland Maine whose school board, last night, voted to make birth control pills and patches available to its students through the school's health center. That's right, MIDDLE SCHOOL. Ya remember how old you were when you started middle school? 11 maybe 12? I had just started my period when I turned 12. I wasn't thinking about sex. It, and boys, were still pretty icky.
Let me outline this little policy for you...First of all, a student must have parental concent to even go to the health center, but not for each visit. There is 1 blanket concent form, which now lets your kid go to the nurse for everything from pepto for a belly ache to the pill (BTW, condoms have been available at this health center since 2002!) So the proponents' argument is, if you don't want your kids to get the pill, don't sign the form! Sounds easy, right? Until they fall in gym and can't receive medical treatment because you didn't sign the damned form!
Second of all, whatever treatment the student receives is not reported to the parents under privacy rules. So, your kid is the one responsible for telling you that she's decided to start the pill in 7th grade, but she didn't want to come to you and ask in the first place. How many kids do ya think will fill mom and dad in?
This is so outrageous on so many levels, I almost don't even know where to start. I think a good place to start is with the legal, emotionally and morally uninvolved perspective. Maine's own state law makes sex with an 11-year-old a felony sexual assault! So, let's see, the school board is now promoting the delinquency of a minor, and I may be wrong, but isn't that a crime?
People in favor of this new policy argue that it doesn't promote sex, it simply protects kids who are going to do it anyway. These are probably the same parents who buy beer for their high school kids' party because "they're going to drink anyway and I'd rather them be safe." How do they not understand that allowing this kind of behavior and enableing it is the same as promoting it. It's sad that it has gotten to the point where you have to talk to your kids about sex and drinking and drugs at such young ages, but your kids need to know that those behaviors at those ages are dangerous and inappropriate. You'd better believe if they were talking about parent providing alcohol or drugs or a getaway car, because their middle-schooler is "going to do it anyway" the public would be all over that parent ready to take the child away! Sex at that age is just as dangerous, if not more so. It can be so emotionally traumatic for these girls.
The thing about all of this that really scares me the most is where the line is drawn with regards to children and sex. If a public institution is allowing sex among minors how can we reconcile that notion with increasingly harsh reaction to pedophiles? How can there be any consistancy? If a 12-year-old is having sex with a 15-year-old it's ok, but if a 20-year-old does it with a 16-year-old it's rape? A child can concent to sex with another child, but not with an adult? It blurs the line between "child" and "adult" which is so incredibly dangerous for our kids. It really starts us down a very dangerous road. It's going to perpetuate the victimization of our young girls and women by saying it's their choice when they are too young to be capable of making that kind of mature choice. There is a kindergarten teacher in Norway who wants to allow her students (now this is 5- and 6-year-olds!) to be able to "explore their sexuality" including explore each others bodies and masterbate. Kids that age have no concept of their sexuality. Being curious about the parts on other little bodies that they don't have is one thing. It's an innocent curiosity. They are just as curious about adult bodies with hairy armpits. But to think they are recognizing sexuality is insane! And again, it takes us down that road that aleviates how we should treat pedophiles. If children are aware of their sexuality and it's all good, how can we say they cannot concent to sex, and therefore are victims of sexual assault and statutory rape?
Bottom line, even if you take the details out, no one should be able to provide medical care to a minor without the parent or guardian knowing and approving that care. The school board has no right to be parents to the students, and medical care is a parents' responsibility.
I wrote a blogpost recently called Hands Off! about another school who had banned touching hugs, no high-fives, for fear that it could lead to other things like fights, or excessive pda or even sex. So let me get this straight, just so we're school is offering birth control to middle schoolers, while another won't let them touch at all. Nothing seems to gain any ground these days unless it's extreme to one side or the other. When did the middle-of-the-road majority get so lost? We are allowing our common sense to be hijacked by -ists. Anyone with an extreme agenda seem to be the only ones who get press. They seem to be the only ones who get anything accomplished. I say to you once again, it's time to get fired up and let 'um know how you feel!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Sick and Tired but Thankful

I know I've been a terrible blogger lately. I'd be lying if I said I was too busy. I am working and getting ready to move (Halloween's the big day, again, btw, back to FL), but I'm not SO terribly occupied that I have no time. I'm a little embarrassed that my mom blogs more than me! I think my main thing has been a lack of inspiration. I have to feel compelled to share something or vent about something to sit down and write.

I'm feeling very conflicted today. I'm sad and worried and relieved, begging God for help and direction and thanking Him for his grace amid near tragedy, all at the same time.
I was watching Headline news today...ya know the quickie, all-the-day's-news-in-30-minutes news. Story after story was something horrible, but with a small blessing wrapped inside. I found myself saying several times, "wow, that was a miracle!" First was that story about the school shooting in Cleveland...4 injured, but only the gunman died. Second, a utility worker working on a traffic light hit a natural gas line that exploded...big fire, no one hurt. That train that derailed in Ohio...chemical cars, big mess, no one hurt. Next, a family, including a 10-year-old boy, notice a man at the beach acting weird..they keep an eye on him as the see him leaving with a small girl, they follow him and catch him as he's starts to molest her. Police found a gun in his vehicle and he has a record as a pedophile. Terrible act, but they stopped him before he went too far and she was home with her family tonight.
I am thankful everyday for small miracles. Bad things happen but they can always be worse. God often lets us fall and skin our knee, but catches us before we break our wrist. It's that fine line that any parent toes between letting young ones learn and protecting them.

My frustration comes, as usual, with politics. People are really losing it here. Does anyone know how to start a .org webpage? I want to start one where you can go and fill out a form that starts with this line..."I will NOT vote for you again if..." and you enter your first name and zip code so it will go to your congressmen. I seriously want to go to Washington, grab some of these people by the shoulders and shake them! Ask them, seriously, "What are you thinking?! Have you read the Constitution?! Do you remember all those millions of people who you are supposed to be serving? The people who voted for you? the people you work for? WE ARE THE BOSS!" They don't seem to take the American people seriously anymore. They bicker and rant about how the other side conducts themselves, and don't hold their own party to the same standards. It may as well be treason is a political enemy does something worng, but a political ally...psh, no biggie! Hypocrites! Both sides! Politicians are so disconnected, so disillusioned, so cocky, so absorbed with power and keeping what they have and getting more of it, that they are basically useless to the general public.
Everything on the news that's politically related just infuriates me. But I still think it's important to watch, to stay informed. Remember how outraged people got over the "bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform?" It got shot down 10 ways to Sunday. We the people, for once, got fired up, collectively and guess worked! Who knew WE THE PEOPLE had the power???
Anyhoo...on that note...have you heard of the Dream Act? This is an amendment to the defense spending bill (the connection to which I have yet to figure out) that will allow for in-state tuition to any school for illegal immigrant kids. Not only does that mean they will have BETTER educational opportunities than American citizens, but these illegal kids, and their families, will get green cards with this program. I'm not sure how they reconcile the idea of them receiving these "illegal benefits" once they have green cards already...does that mean only the 1st child who goes to college gets this deal? Anyway, that is beside the point. This is just a piece of the illegal immigration reform that is being snuck into our lives. California legislature has already passed the bill to do this in thier state. Unless the Governor vetos it, it will go into law there. This is just one of many examples of how US politicians do not have the best interest of the American people in mind. Between special interest groups and foreign leaders, they don't know who to cater to first!
Do you realize the Supreme Court is hearing a case right now on whether international treaties supercedes our own laws? Should we take international law over our own? Should we delete the second amendment because there is a convention somewhere that doesn't condone guns? Or dictate to the states that they cannot execute people? It's backwards, really. We should not enter into any international agreement that violates our laws. The case they are hearing is that of an illegal immigrant from Mexico who admitted he was the head of a gang, and participant, who abducted and brutally raped and murdered 2 teenage girls. He's been on deathrow for 13 years! The issues is should he confession be tossed because he did not consult the Mexican Consulate before he opened his big mouth? If the Supreme Court throws out his conviction (which seems a liberal perspective, but is actually supported by the President) this will set precedent against incarcerating any illegals. They should have no more rights as the rest of us..ya get your mirandas, your lawyer if you want, and there ya go. If they want the protection of the Mexican government, they should stay there. If they want the rights afforded us, they should come here through the right channels. They can't have it both ways! Then again, if the government gets it way, we'll be the United States of North America before ya know it!

So there ya have it. In small, everday life there are small miracles happening all the time. The biger picture, however, if headin to hell in a handbasket. Get fired up and let 'um know how you feel!