Our parental rights are in grave danger. This is an issue of great importance to all parents everywhere, not just homeschoolers. Eighty years ago the Supreme Court declared that “the child is not the mere creature of the State; those who nurture him and direct his destiny have the right, coupled with the high duty, to recognize and prepare him for additional obligations.” Pierce v. Society of Sisters, 268 U.S. 510 (1925).
Thirty years ago the Court continued this line of reasoning with the pronouncement that the “primary role of the parents in the upbringing of their children is now established beyond debate as an enduring American tradition.” Wisconsin v. Yoder, 406 U.S. 205 (1972).
In recent years, support for a high-view of parental rights has been seriously undermined by the current Judicial and Legislative branches of our government. In 2000, in the case of Troxel versus Granville US Supreme Court Justice Scalia said that the US Constitution does not give him any basis to protect parental rights.
As a consequence, numerous lower federal courts refuse to treat parental rights as deserving of protection as a fundamental right. This creates an unfriendly environment for homeschoolers and homeschooling.
Why We Need a Parental Rights Amendment
Patrick Henry understood the need for a bill of rights and secured the promise of James Madison to press the new government to adopt a bill of rights. As Virginia’s representative in the new Congress, Madison made good on his promise, and nearly single-handedly moved the Bill of Rights through Congress and out to the states for ratification.
Patrick Henry said about the need for a written enumeration of rights, "There is many a religious man who knows nothing of argumentative reasoning; there are many of our most worthy citizens who cannot go through all the labyrinths of syllogistic, argumentative deductions, when they think that the rights of conscience are invaded. This sacred right ought not to depend on constructive, logical reasoning."
Everything that Patrick Henry said about the necessity of a written enumeration of rights—including religious freedom, free speech, freedom from unreasonable searches, and all the others listed in the Bill of Rights—is equally true for the issue of parental rights today.
The objective of the PRA is to limit the encroachment of government and to reign in coercive tolerance (or government intolerance of those who do not accept the new definition of tolerance). The PRA will provide an essential tool for the courts. Judges will use this tool to make decisions case by case without infringing upon the fundamental rights of parents.
The printable resources below are available at the parentalrights.org website. They explain the need for the Parental Rights Amendment and the threats posed by the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child. Print and distribute them widely!
Twenty Things You Need to Know About the U. N. Convention on the Rights of the Child
The Domestic Threat to Parental Rights
The Parental Rights Amendment: Frequently Asked Questions
Be sure to Sign the Petition, too: Numbers count! Please sign the petition to say, "Yes, I believe that parental rights should be constitutionally protected through the proposed Parental Rights Amendment." Our first goal is to reach 3,000 signatures from Maine to show support for the amendment to our Maine Legislators and Maine U. S. Senators!