Monday, November 13, 2006

If you can't stand the heat...

I happen to have kids that absolutely thrive on speaking out about their beliefs. (Where did they get this from?)

What I find interesting is that many times adults start conversations and are not willing to continue the conversations when young people actually know what they are talking about or can hold their own in a conversation. I have always believed in raising my children to be salt and light to the world around them. They aren’t perfect kids by any means, (no one’s children are though we would like to think so!) but I’m very proud of how they stand for what they believe in.

Jordan (10th grade - pictured here with one of his favorite pastimes - skateboarding) has a teacher who continually tries to talk to him about the Big Bang theory and how he truly believes it is reality. Jordan enjoys coming up with something creative to share with this teacher each day.

“Hey Mr. Mount…”

“Yes Jordan…” (with a weary sound in his voice…)

“You’ll never guess what happened today!”

“What’s that Jordan?” (sounding even more tired)

“Well, I was riding down the street today, felt a little jolt and… bang!!! A Wal-mart appeared beside me out of nowhere! Can you believe that, Mr. Mount?” The only response Jordan gets to this is a little eye rolling. Next day…

“Guess what Mr. Mount!”

“What’s that, Jordan?”

“You’ll never guess what happened today!”

“What’s that, Jordan?”

“Well, I was in the cafeteria…hungry for lunch when all of a sudden I felt a rumbling, and poof! There appeared a tuna fish sandwich right in front of me!”

“I think it’s time we change the subject Jordan…”

Poor Mr. Mount. He never knew what he was getting into when he decided to ask the class about what they thought about the Big Bang Theory, and try to shove this down their throats.

Last Tuesday something happened which I found very interesting. My kids came home and asked me who I voted for in the election earlier that day. When I told them, they said, “Oh wow, I wonder if that will affect the F-CAT?” I asked them what on earth they meant by that. They said that some teachers had told them to go home and tell their parents to vote for a certain candidate because if they were elected, they would fight to take the F-CAT test away. I thought, “surely if my children have told me the truth about this, it has to just be poor judgment on the part of one teacher.” Imagine my surprise to hear from several other friends from church who have children at different schools that their kids were evidently told the same thing!

Jordan discussed in class with the same teacher that made this admonition to go home and tell parents to vote for the apparent “F-CAT” abolisher that he would rather see people vote for individuals who would fight to save children’s lives. Jordan brought up the need to stop the horrible practice of near-full term babies having scissors jammed in to the back of their necks and murdered as they are in the practice of partial birth abortion. As soon as my son brought this up the teacher said, ”Uh, I think we should change the subject, Jordan.”

My question is, why change the subject? It was okay when the class was discussing embracing a candidate who would try to take away the FCAT, but when one was being discussed who would fight murder if elected, we need to stop talking? Is it too painful to hear the truth about things such as how we got here in the first place, how the earth was created, and why human life is so precious? Perhaps in the politically correct world we live in, the teacher was concerned that some students in the classroom themselves might have aborted babies, and would be hurt by such discussion. Maybe the teacher personally had an abortion and just didn’t want to face the discussion once it turned this way. In any event, why was it so out of place to talk about since the conversation began by talking about other reasons a candidate should be supported?

I find it interesting that adults just don’t expect to hear these kinds of strong opinions from students, or think they can hold their own. No matter what teachers say to my kids about evolution, abortion or whatever, my children can come right back at them verbally swinging. I’m so proud of our kids and the kids of our church.

If a teacher is not prepared to hear an answer, they should not ask a question. May they avoid the subject altogether if they are not able to sustain differing opinions. When I was growing up they used to say, “if you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen!”

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