Sweden’s odd positions on children

Carl XVI Gustaf, the King of Sweden


The latest announcements from the Living Church of God had the following:

Sweden’s Gender Equality Push: In Sweden, “gender equality” begins in preschool. Sweden’s national preschool curriculum states, “Preschools should counteract traditional gender patterns and gender roles. In preschools, girls and boys should have the same opportunities to test and develop abilities and interests without being limited by stereotypical gender roles.” Gender neutrality proponents claim identifying girls and boys by their birth genders forces them into a role that will limit them. One preschool director noted, “Children ought to be allowed to be children, but we should not cement them in roles that we carry with us from the past.” Opponents state, “It is important to have your gender confirmed to you as a child. This does not limit children; it makes t hem confident about their identity…. Children ought to be allowed to mature slowly and naturally.” Said one author, in regard to those pushing gender neutrality, “… they clearly despise traditional people—that is, the… heterosexuals living in nuclear families” (Christian Science Monitor, April 7, 2012). The Bible instructs parents to rear their children in the “training and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). Older men are to be examples and older women are instructed to specifically instruct younger women in their gender-roles related to home and family (Titus 2:1-5). The Bible reveals that God “created [human beings] male and female” (Genesis 5:2), with roles designed to bring about true fulfillment—a truth that some today increasingly hate and reject.

Sadly, parts of the Swedish language have been somewhat modified in preparation for of this:

At a preschool in Sweden, there are no boys or girls. Only genderless “friends”

Even the Swedish equivalent of pronouns such as “him,” her,” “he” and “she” have been replaced. However, new words have been made up just for the preschool and don’t appear in any Swedish dictionary.  http://www.parentdish.com/2011/06/27/preschool-sweden-gender/

Men and women, boys and girls, however, are not the same.

As it turns out, I watched something last night about Sweden and preschool (CBN News, 4/28/12).  Basically, parents in Sweden are somewhat forced to send their children to preschool when they are over one year of age.  Some Swedish parents are outraged by this.  Thus, some parents have left Sweden to move to a Finnish island near Sweden where Swedish is spoken and preschool, etc. is not forced upon them.  Sweden also has effectively banned homeschooling and homeschooling parents are subject to high fines from the government.

The television program last night basically stated that Swedish children now have more psychological and other problems than those in comparable countries and the the Swedish government’s interference in parental rights was the probable cause.

Earlier this month, CBN’s website had the following (which the telecast seems to have been based upon):

“The Swedish government believes that [the] state takes better care of children than parents,” said Jonas Himmelstrand, president of ROHUS, the Swedish Homeschool Association…

Before 2010, it was possible to home-school in Sweden. But new laws now ban the practice in almost all cases and forces private schools to teach the state curriculum.

Swedish human rights lawyer Ruby Harrold-Claesson calls what’s happening in Sweden a “parental inquisition.”

“Sweden’s treatment of parents in the area of education is totalitarian, essentially. They want to take children from birth to graduation and control them,” said Michael Donnelly, director of international relations at the Homeschool Legal Defense Association.

Donnelly claims Sweden’s treatment of parents violates established standards of human rights.

“In fact, the U.N. Declaration on Human Rights signed in 1947 actually says … that parents have a ‘prior right’ to decide the kind of education their children should have,” he explained.

But Sweden’s ambassador to the United States said, “The [Swedish] government does not find that home schooling is necessary for religious or philosophical reasons.”

Fear of ‘Indoctrination’

Parents are pressured to put their children in daycare at age one…Sweden’s experiment with state control of children and families does not seem to be going so well. The Swedish government’s own report shows the psychological health of Swedish youth is declining faster than in 11 comparable European countries.  http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/world/2012/April/Swedish-Home-Schoolers-Flee-Parental-Inquisition/

While I do not wish to get into the homeschool debate, I believe that parents should not be forced to send their little children to preschool nor be taught the false notion of gender neutrality.

Now as far as parental involvement in education, here is some of what the Bible teaches:

6 “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.  (Deuteronomy 6:6-8)

18 “Therefore you shall lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 19 You shall teach them to your children, speaking of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. (Deuteronomy 11:18-19)

4 And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.  (Ephesians 6:4)

Parents are supposed to teach their children.  And the Bible clearly does not teach gender neutrality (cf. 2 Timothy 2:8-15; 1 Corinthians 11:3-15).

It is sad that Sweden has taken its anti-parenting and anti-gender actions.

Some articles of possible interest may include:

Successful Parenting: God’s Way This is an LCG booklet by Dr. J. Fall on properly parenting children for the right type of family.
LCG: Fathers Raising Sons An LCG commentary with Malachi 4:4-6 added.
Girls Are Girls No More  A TW article by James Ginn decrying certain secular influences.
The Cherished Christian Woman: Duty and destiny This is an article by LCG’s Wyatt Ciesielka on women and their potential.
God’s Plan for Happy Marriage This is an LCG booklet by Dr. R. Meredith.
LCG: Homosexuals Gaining Ground “Same-sex marriage” for “gays” and lesbians is becoming more acceptable to many. What does the Bible teach about homosexuality? Can homosexuals change?
The Ten Commandments Reflect Love, Breaking them is Evil Some feel that the ten commandments are a burden. Is that what Jesus, Paul, Peter, James, and John taught?
The Ten Commandments and the Early Church Did Jesus and the Early Church keep the ten commandments? What order were they in? Here are quotes from the Bible and early writings.
Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel Are the Americans, Canadians, English, Scottish, Welsh, Australians, Anglo (non-Dutch) Southern Africans, and New Zealanders descendants of Joseph? Where are the lost ten-tribes of Israel?  What biblical tribe seems to be Sweden?

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