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Tue., May 14, 2013

Parental role overlooked

Kathleen Parker, the best-looking columnist I read, is also one of my favorites when it comes to content. Yet her May 5 piece on Plan B contraception with no age limits deserves some criticism.

There is no question in my mind that girls (and boys) aged 11, 12 or 15 should not be sexually active. But whether or not they will be sexually active is decided by parents; not by peers, not by schools, not by books they read, much less by availability of contraceptives.

If a child is mentally healthy and parents create an understanding, loving, focused and caring environment, they become not just a part, but the major part, of that child’s life. When their children reach the ages of 11, 12 and 15, they will have substantial, if not full, control of what the child does, especially in areas like drugs, alcohol and sex. But it requires engagement, time, effort, discipline (of parents) and rationality to get to that stage.

To blame the government (as Parker indirectly does) for an unhinged child is unfair, and what is blurred is not the “line of innocence,” but the role of parents that cannot be substituted.

Peter Dolina


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