Parental Rights vs. Government Superimposition

St. Andre Bessette Parish“Believe it or not, Toronto has broken another historical cold-weather record today, bottoming out at -20C overnight,” was exactly the way it was reported in Toronto Star about this Tuesday’s weather.

Despite the extreme cold weather (-23C to -26C including the wind chill factor) and short notice, over 300 concerned parents and grandparents came out to march in front of Queen’s Park to express their dissatisfaction with the new Sex Ed curriculum. They chanted over and over again, in unison, “We [the parents] say No! We say No! We say No! We say No!”

Despite the claim to updating an outdated and long overdue curriculum, the impact this superimposition of the new Sex Ed will have, in my opinion, is far reaching – it violates religious liberty and fundamental parental rights. This has prompted Cardinal Collins to respond and make a public statement:

“As Catholics, we understand that parents are the primary educators of their children, and that especially in the teaching of family life issues, the parental role is vital. For more than 30 years, Ontario’s publicly funded Catholic schools have provided a family life curriculum consistent with our faith. The goal is to present a Catholic view of human life, sexuality, marriage and family, complementing the efforts of parents to teach their children at home. While Catholic schools have a responsibility to follow the curriculum set out by the Ministry of Education, they have always sought to do so in a way that conveys, respects and models Catholic Christian principles to our students. They will continue this tradition.

A group of Catholic educators will produce resources that support Catholic teachers so that the new curriculum is implemented in a way that is consistent with our Catholic teachings and appropriate within the context of a Catholic classroom. Since 1989, the Institute for Catholic Education (ICE) has coordinated the implementation of the family life curriculum in publicly funded Catholic schools. ICE will serve as the point of contact for further media inquiries.”

As a concerned parent, a Canadian media personality and conservative political activist, Ezra Levant started a petition (http://www.protectourkids.ca). I think the petition speaks for itself.

“We are parents who are deeply concerned about the new Ontario sex education curriculum. That curriculum inappropriately pushes adult sexual content onto children of tender years, as young as age six. It tells grade school children to think of themselves as sexually available when they legally, emotionally and morally should not be. It grooms children for every possible expression of sexuality, imposing the most extreme views of sex on every family’s child.

This sex-ed curriculum was imposed upon Ontario families in a secretive manner, with no meaningful consultation. Even more troubling, the Ontario government has not disclosed the full extent of the involvement of Ben Levin, the former deputy minister of education, who has announced that he will plead guilty to criminal charges of pedophilia and child pornography. The curriculum’s emphasis on early sexualization of children is reminiscent of grooming techniques used by child predators.

Schools are supposed to be safe places for children, and teachers are supposed to protect them. This curriculum undermines that trust, by making classrooms a place where children will lose their innocence by order of the government. This curriculum pits teachers against parents and undermines family authority with the authority of the government.

We demand that the government of Ontario repeal this curriculum.”

St. Andre Bessette ParishDuring the protest I saw one mother zipping up her child’s winter coat to protect her child against the extreme cold weather. I thought to myself, “This is what we do and what we need to do as parents – protect our children’s innocence and teach them to stand up for their rights when they are ignored and undermined!” I didn’t have to convince anyone of this at the rally since we were all at Queen’s Park to do exactly that.

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