Looking Toward the Future
As you may have read in previous issues of the Court Report, the most serious threat to homeschool freedom in America is the growing attack on parental rights. If the right of parents to direct their children’s upbringing and education is no longer recognized as a fundamental right, homeschooling—along with many other freedoms—stands on shaky ground.
Threats to parental rights range from federal and Supreme Court decisions to international law. For example, the United States is poised to adopt an international treaty, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), that would allow the government to override any parental decision if the government deemed its decision better. If ratified in the U.S., the CRC would become the supreme law of the land.
Because the Constitution currently contains no explicit protection of parental rights, the only answer is to amend it. To this end, ParentalRights.org was formed. Through the efforts of senators and representatives, lobbyists, parents, and even kids, the Parental Rights Amendment has been drafted, submitted in the House and Senate, and currently awaits reintroduction in both houses. ParentalRights.org needs your help to spread the word about the amendment, which must eventually be ratified by 38 states.
Jonathan Horton, national grassroots director for ParentalRights.org, urges parents to remain vigilant. “Retired homeschoolers have a unique role to play in the Parental Rights Amendment effort. This is because they remember the major homeschooling battles of the ’80s and ’90s. We need the pioneers to continue their work among us, reminding those who have followed in their footsteps that this is a battle that will go on and on, because our opponents will never give up.”
He encourages “retired” homeschooling parents to consider becoming state or district coordinators, who oversee the efforts of local volunteers. Horton also emphasizes the need for parents to spread the word to everyone they know, especially in churches. “These parents’ personal experience and knowledge of the history of the fight for parental rights in this country will give them added credibility and influence as they approach others about the issue,” Horton says.
ParentalRights.org offers many ways for you to get involved in the fight to protect parental freedoms. Take a look at www.ParentalRights.org to find everything from printable fliers and blog banners to an online donation page and information on hosting a documentary showing.
“Retired homeschoolers may no longer be threatened directly by infringements on parental rights,” Horton says. “But the rights of their children and grandchildren now hang in the balance, so we need their help today just as much as we did yesterday.”