(Chuck Muth) – I haven’t been this ticked off in a long time.
According to a January 4th report on WRGB-TV 6 in Albany, NY, Richard and Margie Cressy were “arrested on child endangerment charges” after authorities received an anonymous tip. And just what heinous abuse were the Cressys inflicting on their four children, ages 8 to 14?
You’re not going to believe it.
These dastardly, diabolical monsters had….dared to home-school their children for seven years rather than out-source their responsibility to a government-run education camp without getting the permission of government authorities!
Richard Hoffman, Superintendent of the Fonda-Fultonville Central School District, admitted that “there was education going on,” but maintained that the Cressys “didn’t fulfill their legal responsibility to file with the school district to be home-schooled.”
That’s right. Richard and Margie were busted, not for failing to educate their children, but for “failing to register their children with the school district.”
According to the report, “Hoffman said the Cressys have since submitted a home-schooling curriculum, which he has approved.”
HE has approved? Something is seriously, seriously wrong here, folks. Why in the hell do these parents need “permission” from this government bureaucrat to educate their own children? I mean, whose kids are they? Richard Cressy’s….or Richard Hoffman’s?
Think of it another way.
Let’s say Margie Cressy had opted to terminate all four of her pregnancies rather than bring those children into the world. Talk about “child endangerment”! Yet in no way, shape, form or fashion would Margie Cressy be required to register with the government to abort those children, let alone seek the government’s permission.
And yet she was thrown behind bars for failing to fill out some government paperwork seeking permission from the government to take on the responsibility of teaching her OWN kids how to read, write and do arithmetic?
For its part, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, which slapped the cuff on the home-schooling parents and hauled their sorry butts off to the hoose-gow, issued a “clarification” on why they busted these fiends rather than, you know, murderers and drug dealers and rapists.
“These arrests were made for not meeting the responsibilities required by the State of New York for home schooling and for the protection of minor children,” the department explained in a written stateme. “It is alleged that the Cressys knowingly did not file the required paperwork with the local school district for seven years…”
The Sheriff’s Office added: “If these arrests have raised the awareness that there are specific rules and laws surrounding home-schooling children and even if one child will benefit from that knowledge, regardless of the outcome of this case the investigation may be deemed a success.”
No, it won’t.
This incident will be a tragedy; an outrage, no matter how the government tries to spin it. These parents DID NOTHING WRONG other than fail to fill out some government paperwork that they never should have been required to fill out in the first place. At worst they resisted government authority in an area the government has no business being in the first place.
The only good that could possibly come from this case is if more home-schooling parents, outraged at this ongoing government encroachment on parental prerogatives, stand up and refuse to seek the government’s “permission” or “approval” to provide for their own children’s education by telling these bureaucrats to stick their stinkin’ paperwork where the sun don’t shine.
Indeed, doing so would be in the finest tradition of our Founding Fathers. As Thomas Jefferson once said, “The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions, that I wish it to be always kept alive.”
Protecting parental rights from government encroachment is absolutely, positively one of those occasions. And in that spirit, I’ve been home-schooling my own kids for six years now and have never “registered” with any government authority.
In fact, while living in Carson City I made it a point to advise the local school district that I intentionally was NOT filling out their “required” paperwork and invited them to prosecute me. Never heard back from them.
I now hereby extend the same invitation to Walt Rulffes, superintendent of the Clark County School District. You know where to find me, Walt. I’m in the book.