Laurie A. Couture on Attachment Parenting, Unschooling, Social Justice and The Planet

Spanking: It’s time to Stop Defending Violence Against Children

27 August 2010 Categories: Uncategorized

The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child has been in the news, as President Obama considers that it is an embarrassment that the United States is the only “civilized” nation who has refused to ratify a document that calls for nations to abolish legalized violence towards children. Although I take issue with the fact that the UN Convention recommends school be compulsory, the UN Convention is the only international child-focused treaty that calls for the end of violence towards youth. Egregiously, the GOP opposes the UN Convention because they have traditionally viewed children as the property of parents. Conservatives as a group have a poor track record regarding fighting for human rights; this includes their refusal to accept children’s right to live in homes and communities where their bodies are protected from age-discriminating violence.

“Spanking” is a candy-coated word for violence- It is not discipline, it is not any of the rationalizing lies we tell ourselves as a culture that it is. Corporal punishment is a physical, emotional and spiritual assault on a child and it has negative consequences to a child’s neurological, psychological and social development. If we hope to teach our children to be peaceful, compassionate, nonviolent, responsible and cooperative people, then we must parent by deepening the parent-child attachment relationship, not hurt it through traumatizing violence. Hitting children teaches them to accept aggression towards the self or others or to become aggressive towards the self or others in some form- often in a form that they later do not perceive as aggressive. […]

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Back to School Signals the End of Childhood Joy and Freedom

15 August 2010 Categories: homeschooling

This past weekend my 16 year old son and I went camping with some friends of ours. While kayaking alongside my son and our friends during our trip, I marveled at the vivid beauty before me: Mount Chocorua gracing proudly and breathtakingly in the distance, accented by New England White Pines, peaceful Lilly-padded lake and the salve of nature’s sounds.

I had to take a breath of sheer awe at the perfect beauty when my son and his friend in their boat rowed by with playful boyish charm across this backdrop as I sat and watched in my kayak. I regretted that I had not wrapped my camera in a plastic bag and brought it along to capture this moment. My mind immediatly soared back to the days of Native America, when joy was the purpose of childhood, when Native American children would have paddled their canoes across this very backdrop, laughing, racing and splashing just like my son and his friend, while loving parents in their canoes smiled serenely and with perfect love and gratitude for the children, the mountain, the lake, the trees, the lilly pads, animals… and the freedom. […]

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Schools Banning Silly Bandz: More Important than Banning School Abuse of Children?

03 August 2010 Categories: Uncategorized

TIME magazine recently reported that public schools are finding yet another excuse to curtail children’s freedom of expression: An obsession with Silly Bandz (Banning the Bandz, June 14, 2010)!

I am convinced that public school administrators and many teachers  invest  energy in seeking out and extinguishing nearly any semblance of fun, enjoyment, comfort and pleasure that children are able to sneak into the monotonous and joyless school day. If the children are becoming lively, excited and interested in something or otherwise distracted from the tedium of the school day, you can be sure that if the school didn’t sanction it, it’ll be found out and prohibited. Rather than abolish practices that are actually harmful and traumatizing to children, such as corporal punishment, standardized testing, psychiatric drugging, developmentally inappropriate teaching methods and the practices of rationing toilet use and restricting physical activity and play, public schools would rather ban harmless novelties…  such as rubber bracelets…

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