In speaking from the standpoint of a libertarian, we must be ever-weary of those who argue for government controls, education and intervention “to fix” a societal problem. Most often, the programs and services conjured up will inevitably encroach on a citizen’s rights much like the proverbial camel’s-nose-in-the-tent. Big government will beget bigger government – values and rights be damned.
In Canada today, big government attempts to deliver cradle to grave counsel and services. We are now paying for public institutions that hold pre-schoolers to seniors, and for government services that “manage” all problems within our communities. We pay dearly for the barrage of public information we are subjected to on every issue under the sun. All of this government activity is developed and run with no respect to what may be differing views and values of individuals.
The most recent, egregious case of this Big-Brother-knows-best approach to life is the Government of Ontario’s ramrodding the new sex ed curriculum into primary school classrooms without an open public consultation.
In this case, there are a few (government sponsored) interest groups who applaud the government actions. For instance, People for Education, a public education advocacy group, supports an updated curriculum stating that there is “strong” evidence indicating that age-appropriate education has impact. PFE executive director Annie Kidder commented on the new curriculum, “The evidence is very strong and pretty unequivocal that talking to kids about a whole range of information to do with their bodies and relationships (early on) makes a difference in terms of their ability to keep themselves safe, to have healthy relationships.”
Ms. Kidder’s observation may well be universally acknowledged today. However, what is most upsetting for Ontario parents is not the fact there is a dialogue about sex in schools, but rather the sexual content that has been chosen to be taught at younger-than-ever-aged school children. This frustration can be seen in the wording of the petition launched by Ontario Catholic parents group Parents as First Educators that reads: “We do not believe that prepubescent children should be overloaded with explicit information about sex,” and demands “an end to plans” to update the sex-ed curriculum. “The values of self-control, morals and marriage are not considered in this program and the emotional consequences of loveless sex, with no commitment, are not addressed.”
At question is the same sex-ed curriculum that the Ontario Liberal government previously attempted to update in 2010 – until it backed off after backlash from religious leaders. So there is no doubt about what is being talked about, this new sex-ed program will teach kids about use of body parts in Grade 1 (age 6), homosexuality and same-sex marriages in Grade 3 (age 8), encourage discussions about puberty and exploring masturbation in Grade 6 (age 11), and talk about preventing sexually transmitted diseases, and oral and anal sex in Grade 7 (age12).
And there is a great deal more to this controversial program by the Ontario Government.
Campaign Life Coalition is but one group in the Province that has raised the siren cry that this curriculum was written while Ben Leven was the Education Department’s Deputy Minister. They point out that this fact is most disturbing:
It’s important to consider the fact that this curriculum was also written under the direction of an alleged child pornographer, Mr. Benjamin Levin. He was the Deputy Education Minister at the time, serving under then Education Minister Kathleen Wynne. Levin was charged by police with 7 counts of making and distributing child pornography.
Levin was charged by police with 7 counts of making and distributing child pornography. Although the man has not yet been proven guilty in a court of law, many people are questioning whether “grooming” could have been a reason for introducing these explicit subjects at such delicate ages. If the allegations are true, could it be that the curriculum was designed to “prime” children, so as to make them sexually available?
When it is found that an alleged pedophile was in charge of writing what many parents perceive to be graphic, age-inappropriate Sex Ed curriculum, parents cannot be blamed for wanting no part of the curriculum. Should warning bells be going off when we learn that an alleged pedophile oversaw the writing of curriculum which gets 6 year olds talking about their genitals, encourages kids to masturbate, and wants to get 13 year olds thinking about oral sex and anal sex?
The safety of children is too important to ignore Levin’s hand in this curriculum.
Although the current Education Minister states that Ben Levin was not directly involved in developing the curriculum, is there any doubt why parents who have not seen the curriculum, nor have had any opportunity to comment on it, would be concerned? Premier Kathleen Wynne is belligerently adamant in the face of parents’ anxiousness that this sex ed curriculum will be in Ontario primary schools starting in September 2015.
Ontario’s sex-ed curriculum is an excellent case in point for libertarians’ concerns about Canadians’ increasing dependency on government. It is exactly the price we pay for accepting Big Brother’s “helping hands.” Individual’s rights and values are wholly compromised and there is little to no recourse for the average citizen. It is the highest of costs we pay for big government.