Marybeth Hicks

t’s been an eventful week at the intersection of parenting and politics, that busy corner where decision-making often is affected by the onslaught of traffic from social engineers, liberal educators, public health experts, and civil rights activists who know better than parents what’s best for their kids.

Several news stories seem to indicate that America’s moms and dads are losing ground in the effort to raise their children as they see fit. To wit:

In Rhode Island, the Cranston school district announced it was banning father-daughter and mother-son events because a complaint from the American Civil Liberties Union indicated they violate state law. The civil rights group filed on behalf of a single mother who said her daughter suffered discrimination because she doesn’t have a daddy with whom she can attend the daddy-daughter dance.

“This is 2012 and [public schools] should not be in the business of fostering blatant gender stereotypes,” Steven Brown of the Rhode Island ACLU was reported to have said.

Take that, parents.

In nearby New York City, the public school system quietly launched a pilot program in 13 schools called CATCH, or Connecting Adolescents To Comprehensive Healthcare. This progressive health care initiative has schools distributing abortifacient drugs — also known as “morning-after pills” — along with the free condoms they already hand out to any student who wants them, no questions asked.

Parents learned of the program through a letter advising them they could opt their students out of the program. According to an article at NBC.com, Deborah Kaplan, assistant commissioner at the city health department’s Bureau of Maternal, Infant and Reproductive Health, said, “We wanted to make sure young people who are sexually active have easy access to contraceptive services and general reproductive health services.”

This is because, Ms. Kaplan said, “In any given year, there are about 7,000 pregnancies to girls ages 15 to 17 in New York City, about 90 percent of those are unintended.”

Obviously, since NYPS is trying to solve such a serious problem, undermining the rights of parents to know about the prescriptions their children are taking is not relevant.

Meanwhile, in faraway La Porte, Texas, stay-at-home mom Tammy Cooper was arrested and held in jail for 18 hours overnight for neglectful parenting based on the complaint of a neighbor. Ms. Cooper’s children had been riding motorized scooters in front of their home (situated on a cul-de-sac). She claims to have been watching them from a lawn chair.


Marybeth Hicks

Marybeth Hicks is the author of Don't Let the Kids Drink the Kool-Aid: Confronting the Left's Assault on Our Families, Faith, and Freedom (Regnery Publishers, 2011).