Friday, November 20, 2009

Parental Bailouts Encourage Throwing Away Children

I just got back from watching The Blindside which depicts the remarkable story of All-American football star Michael Oher. As a teenager Michael is discovered virtually homeless as result of his mother's drug use and irresponsibility with her numerous children. At first I thought, 'what a lucky child to be taken in by a caring family'. Then my second thought was, 'what a rare case this is and imagine all of those 7-yr olds being neglected and abandoned to fend for themselves as a result of selfish adults'. It's unfathomable to think of selfish people who put their own self interests and comfort ahead of a defenseless child. But this is a trend that has been plaguing our society for years and is spreading exponentially as this type of abuse only breeds the same.

The culpa for this infectious disease eating at our society are the many social programs designed to relieve parents of their responsibility but which also strip away their freedom to act as a parent. The government is making it easier and easier for adults to cut the ties of responsibility to their children and abandon them (since there are no real repercussions for giving your children over to the state). Just to name a few nanny programs, we have the welfare systems that encourage women to have as many children as possible outside of wedlock, after school programs that encourage parents to leave their children to be raised by someone else and lunch programs that encourage parents to not take the time (or money) to feed/make their children breakfast or lunch before school. These programs sound nice for the child but in the long run make it easier for a parent to say to themselves that the government is as capable as they are if not more so of raising their children. But many parents do want to retain some of their rights. A timely example is the recent vote for parental rights by the school board in the San Juan Unified School District. (check it out:

What gets me here is that a large group of people don't understand that nothing is free. You can't expect to pick and choose the free social programs you want the government to give out without also sacrificing some of your rights. Do we really believe that these parental bailouts could come without strings attached? I feel that we as parents and adults without children need to start becoming more aware of what "gifts" we are accepting and try to find the strings. Do we want government to give us everything to make life easier or do we go out and work for the things we need? We can't have it both ways. We either invite the government to be the hand that rocks the cradle for us or we do it ourselves. I'm for taking up my own responsibilities and encouraging and helping those around me to do the same. The question then is how to help those who are in a cycle of receiving social programs escape the cycle? Michael Oher's story turned out to have a happy ending but how many never-to-be-discovered Michael Ohers are being left with this ghetto mentality to die young and never discover their gifts and talents, ones that could affect incredible change and invention?

Movie side note:
The Twilight series was one of the most enjoyable fiction series I've ever read, however the Twilight movies (having just watched New Moon) are two of the most painful movies I've EVER watched.


  1. The purpose of this blog is not to knock people who genuinely need these programs for short periods of time but to encourage all to work towards being more self sufficient and less dependent. These programs can be good when they are helping a family who has run into bad luck. My concern is when a parent finds they have a right to the programs. Some families may need a school lunch program for a short period of time but noone needs the government to feed their child breakfast and lunch all through primary school.

  2. This reminds me of my brother's family. He was going through Vet school and needed some assistance as he had a wife and three children. They started using food stamps and found that they received WAY more than they could ever use. Yet they couldn't ask for less or give some back. That wasn't allowed. He has since graduated and become a vet and no longer uses government assistance. This highlights the right attitude toward government programs but also the gross inefficiencies of those same programs. It's no wonder food stamps are often illegally traded for money and used to buy alcohol, drugs, porn etc. When you have twice as much as you need, the urge to abuse the system often wins.