Mandatory Service Requirements for Youth

Ok, class, time for a quick current events pop quiz:

Which country just approved a $6 billion initiative that includes the following, directing its legislative body to determine:

“….whether a workable, fair, and reasonable mandatory service requirement for all able young people could be developed, and how such a requirement could be implemented in a manner that would strengthen the social fabric of the Nation and overcome civic challenges by bringing together people from diverse economic, ethnic, and educational backgrounds.”

Your answer, please.

Russia? No.

China? No.

Sorry…..the correct answer is the United States of America.

I’m not kidding. HB 1388 passed in the Senate today. This is scary stuff. The fine print includes descriptions of young people wearing uniforms and being trained on campuses (the term originally used was ‘camps’ but they changed that, I wonder why?) It’s even been suggested that middle schoolers and high schoolers should be included.

Ironically, despite the use of the word ‘mandatory,’ the name of the bill is GIVE (Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education Act). Isn’t ‘mandatory volunteerism’ an oxymoron?

If there was ever a time for homeschoolers, as busy as we are, to pay close attention to the quickly changing agenda of our government, it’s now.

Learn more from:

San Francisco Examiner

Spectator (UK)

American Thinker

Michelle Malkin

The Cost of Homeschooling vs. the Cost of Public Schools

I wonder if the average citizen really understands just how cost-efficient homeschooling is?

Back when I was homeschooling all four of my kids, the most I ever spent in a year for “school” was probably $1500, and that was when my two older kids took high school by correspondence.

That was a while back, but I have a hard time imagining someone today even spending $1000 per child to homeschool them. The thing is, educating a child costs far more in time than in resources, and we moms don’t invoice for that time.

As for resources, a Bible, a public library and some good museums are really all you need. The rest is gravy.

And there’s plenty of gravy in the public schools. Get a load of this, from today’s Wall Street Journal:

The state now spends roughly $13,000 per public-school student in Chicago, but the money has done little to reverse a dismal high school graduation rate of 51%.

Holy cow! For $13K annually per child, most homeschool parents could homeschool their children through graduation, and pay off the mortgage early with the money left over.

President Obama’s Slip of the Tongue

Without his crutch teleprompter, President Obama is forced to speak his own mind, giving us a rare peek into his thoughts and personal character. Probably not a good idea, as evidenced by his appearance on Jay Leno’s show last night:

Nice. I have a wonderful son with Down syndrome, so I’m more than willing to point out that President Obama has a deep character flaw, as does anyone who makes fun of the developmentally disabled.

Kind of reminds me of the time then-vice president Al Gore referred to his political enemies as “the extra-chromosome right wing.” (Down syndrome is characterized by an extra 21st chromosome.)

Ugh. How disappointing.

The Current Financial Crisis

The current financial crisis has been coming for a long time, but it’s just over the past few weeks that the media seems to have noticed, and boy, everyone’s noticing now that the stock market has plunged. It’s scary to contemplate the future in light of what we’re finally seeing in the news.

Christians know that God will look out for them, but also that they need to follow His guidance about money and how to handle it. As homeschooling parents, we have ample time and opportunity to share those precepts with our children.

But what we teach is not nearly as compelling to them as how (or whether) we walk our talk. Recently columnist Cal Thomas wrote about how we are to look at money:

Throughout Scripture, people are warned that money is a false G-d that leads to destruction. Wealth is best used when it becomes a river, not a reservoir; when it blesses and encourages others and does not solely feed one’s personal empire.

It’s easy to point to the greedy people who are responsible for the economic troubles our country now faces. But, are we living within our own means? Are we giving to our church, to other areas of need, and to those who need our help? We can talk ourselves blue in the face about how God wants us to handle the money He has given us, but our kids won’t really hear that talk unless it’s accompanied by action.