Saturday, August 21, 2010


THE MIKIVERSE IS UNDERGOING RENOVATIONS. The Mikiverse is growing new branches, and whilst this page will still act as The Mikiverse tree of life, moving forward, all of the information that you have found on here, will live on the new branches. My belief is that this change will make it easier for you all to find the different pieces of information that you like to consume within this habitat. NOTHING WILL BE REMOVED FROM THIS HABITAT UNTIL IT HAS A BRANCH TO EXIST AND LIVE IN. From now on, new posts will be located in the relevant subject branch, but, this central trunk will link to all the branches.

Sun Smiles, Michael Byers aka Tetractys Merkaba.

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Sunday, August 1, 2010

Miriam Grossman | Friday, 30 July 2010

Teach my child that, and you’ll be sorry

It is not what you would want to read before breakfast, but it's the sex menu they are serving up to children.

Sex education for tots is in the headlines. Last month it was a policy in Provincetown, Massachusetts making condoms available to first graders. Student requests were to be kept secret and parents’ objections ignored.

Now the news is from Montana. If the Helena school district has its way, kindergarteners will learn about “reproductive body parts”: the penis, vagina, breast, nipples, testicles, scrotum, and uterus. Ten year olds will be taught that “sexual intercourse includes but is not limited to vaginal, oral, or anal penetration”. Two years later they will discover this may involve “the penis, fingers, tongue or objects”.

Have these people lost their minds? To the contrary. All these maneuvers are entirely consistent with the sex education programs supported by President Obama. Moreover, the administration would like taxpayers to fund their export to the rest of the world.

Who came up with the notion that it’s necessary to teach the world’s children about high risk sex acts their parents never heard of? The usual suspects: Planned Parenthood and the Sexuality Education and Information Council of the United States (SEICUS, a private organization). These groups portray themselves as guardians of our children’s health; they claim to provide students with all the information and skills they need to make smart choices. Their curricula, they declare, are comprehensive, age appropriate, ideologically neutral, and medically accurate. They give children the same message as parents: you’re too young – wait until you’re older.

If only it was so. The priority of this industry is not sexual health, but sexual freedom. Their objective is not for students to delay sexual behavior and remain free of infection, but for them to be open, from a tender age, to just about any form of sexual activity.

Let’s get this straight. There is no evidence that knowing the anatomy of male and female genitalia is vital to the well-being of young children. And the “one size fits all” approach, mandating that children learn about intercourse or same sex attraction at a particular age, is contrary to the principles of child development.

Children are not miniature adults. Introducing them to new information that cannot be easily assimilated can be distressing. A young child has his own theories about where babies come from, based on what he already knows; he may think his sibling came from a store or the hospital, or that his mother consumed some particular food or drink.

There’s nothing wrong with that. “Parents should respond to the needs and curiosity level of their individual child”, says the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, “offering no more or less information than their child is asking for and is able to understand”. In other words, let him be.

The sex ed oligarchy ignores this wisdom. And while insisting that first graders be taught “human beings can love people of the same gender and people of another gender”, and expecting third graders to “define HIV/AIDS”, these “experts” omit critical biological facts from the one group that actually needs sex education: adolescents.

Among other things, middle and high school students are not taught that: -

* Intimate behavior causes the release of a brain chemical that promotes feelings of attachment and trust, even if you are with a stranger. -

* A girl’s immature cervix increases her vulnerability to genital infections. HIV aside, girls and women carry 80% of the burden of negative consequences from early sexual behavior and multiple partners. -

* Faeces are filled with dangerous pathogens. Oral-anal contact is associated with serious infectious diseases such as salmonella, shigella, and hepatitis A, B, and C. -

* The physiology and anatomy of the anus is vastly different from the vagina. Regarding HIV transmission, anal intercourse is at least twenty times more dangerous than vaginal intercourse. -

* As stated on condom wrappers, breakage is more likely to occur during anal intercourse

How do “comprehensive” sex educators justify the omission of these life-saving facts? How do they boldly claim that their curricula are medically accurate, and their sole priority the health of children? I don’t know about Montana, but where I come from, that’s called chutzpah.

The administration wants to see programs like Helena’s go global. This year, thirty-nine House democrats introduced H.R. 5121, the Global Sexual and Reproductive Health Act of 2010. It calls for comprehensive sex education in developing countries using US taxpayer funds.

How do we fight this madness? Like hundreds of parents, grandparents, teachers, and clergy in Helena are – by standing up publicly and insisting that sex education, like all health matters, be based on biological truths, not social agendas. By reminding authorities that this is a war against disease, not social injustice. And by proclaiming loud and clear: “my child’s innocence is precious. You try and take that away, and you’ll be sorry.”

Miriam Grossman, MD is a child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist and the author of You’re Teaching My Child What? A Physician Exposes the Lies of Sex Education and How They Harm Your Child (Regnery). She is a scholar in residence at World Youth Alliance.

This article is published by Miriam Grossman, and MercatorNet.com under a Creative Commons licence. You may republish it or translate it free of charge with attribution for non-commercial purposes following these guidelines. If you teach at a university we ask that your department make a donation. Commercial media must contact us for permission and fees. Some articles on this site are published under different terms.
July 28, 2010

Home education rules will have to change after Khyra Ishaq case, says Gove

Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, said yesterday that changes would be made to the home education system if it was found that it left some children at greater risk of abuse or neglect.

He promised to examine evidence presented by Birmingham City Council, which said that the lax regulatory regime left its staff powerless to intervene when Khyra Ishaq’s mother removed her from school.

Council chiefs are writing to Mr Gove asking him to reconsider the need for some sort of registration system. England has one of the most liberal approaches to home education in the developed world. Although education is compulsory, school is not and parents have the right to teach their children at home. Most European countries require registration.

Speaking after the reivew was published, Mr Gove said that most parents who chose home education did “a very good job, some of them picking up the pieces where children have had problems at school”. But he added that he was aware that local authorities felt they had no powers to act if they feared children were not being properly taught or that home education was simply an excuse to keep them away from school.

“We note the views of the BSCB [Birmingham safeguarding children board] about the law as it applies to home educated children and we are aware of the very strong views held by local authorities and by home educating parents on this matter,” he said in a statement.

“Clearly lessons need to be learnt by the tragic events in this case, and I will consider the letter I expect to receive from Birmingham shortly, to see what changes need to be made to the existing arrangements.”

Labour tried to change the law before the election so that home educators had to register with their local authority. The move was fiercely resisted by home-educating parents who said that it was the thin end of the wedge that would result in annual Ofsted inspections and red tape.

Mr Gove agreed, saying that it stigmatised home educators. However, his statement yesterday suggests that he might think again.

Last summer a government report into home education by Graham Badman, a former head teacher and director of children’s services, suggested that there may be a need for vigilance. Proportionately, twice as many home-educated children are known to social services as schoolage children within the mainstream education system, the report said.

“It is a cause of concern that, although approximately 20,000 home educated children are known to local authorities, estimates vary as to the real number, which could be in excess of 80,000.” The report concluded: “I am not persuaded that under the current regulatory regime there is a correct balance between the rights of the parents and the rights of the child.”

© Times Newspapers Ltd 2010 Registered in England No. 894646 Registered office: 1 Virginia Street, London, E98 1XY

January 11, 2010

Arizona speed cameras may be flash in pan as $90m fines are ignored

An attempt to introduce British-style speed cameras on the other side of the Atlantic has ended in a public revolt, with motorists binning speeding tickets worth $90 million (£60 million). The scheme in Arizona is now on the verge of bankruptcy and might be scrapped.

Its demise would mark an ignoble end to the first statewide effort to bring speed camera enforcement to the US, where many, including judges and elected officials, regard the devices as an unconstitutional taxcollection method.

“I see all the cameras in Arizona completely coming down,” said Shawn Dow, who is leading the public revolt via his chairmanship of Arizona Citizens Against Photo Radar. “The citizens of Arizona took away the cash cow of Arizona by refusing to pay.” He is now trying to gain support for a ballot measure banning the cameras in November’s elections.

Although about 700,000 tickets have been issued since Arizona’s 76-camera plan was rolled out last year, a mere $37 million of the $127 million in fines and surcharges has been collected. That is because Arizonans have realised that they can simply ignore tickets sent to them in the post, and the authorities cannot prove that they have received them. Unless the tickets are served in person — something Arizona cannot afford to do — they become void after three months.

Motorists have shown their opposition to the machines in other ways, too — such as placing large cardboard boxes over them, decorating them with sticky notes, attacking them with pickaxes and, in one case, setting off the cameras while standing in front wearing a monkey mask.

The company hired to install Arizona’s cameras, Redflex, is under financial pressure, because it invested $16 million upfront in the equipment. But it says it is persevering. “Redflex is in this for the long haul,” it said.

While Americans have largely tolerated cameras that catch motorists running red lights, the introduction of speed cameras has been met by the kind of public fury usually reserved for overpaid Wall Street bankers. It is thought that about 300 communities in the US have experimented with the devices, but Arizona was the first state to commit to the technology under the then governor Janet Napolitano, now the US Secretary of Homeland Security.

The new governor — Jan Brewer, a Republican — is openly critical, and agrees that the scheme was introduced more to raise money than to prevent accidents. As in Britain, however, there are many officials in Arizona who argue that the critics protest too much.

If the cameras raise money for the Government, say supporters, that is not the only purpose. Last week a 25-year-old man was snapped as he tore through a 65mph zone at 78mph — while standing on the driver’s seat, with his head poking through the sunroof. He has since been arrested.

People power

• Icelanders used pots and pans to make a deafening clatter during protests against the mishandling of the financial crisis last January

• More than 400,000 Britons marched on Trafalgar Square in 2002 to protest against anti-foxhunting laws. Crowds queued for more than six hours to follow the official route

• Resistance in the Philippines against the Marcos regime in 1986 popularised the term “people power”. Rigged elections prompted non-violent protests in what became known as the Yellow Revolution because of the yellow ribbons worn by protesters

• The Whiskey Rebellion in the 1790s in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, fought against the introduction of a tax on the spirit. Resistance measures included robbing the post, stopping court proceedings and assaulting tax collectors

Source: BBC, Times database