Do We Really Want the “Village” to Raise Our Children?

By Elena Chin
Mom’s for Liberty Queens County Chapter Chair

The phrase “It takes a village to raise a child” originated from an African proverb which conveys the message that it takes a community of people, working together, to provide a safe and healthy environment in which children can thrive and succeed. In 1996, Hillary Clinton conveyed a similar vision for American children in the first publication of her book entitled, It Takes a Village: And Other Lessons Children Teach Us.  The book sold 400,000 hardcover copies, 200,000 paperbacks, and remained on the New York Times best seller list for 18 weeks.  She republished a Tenth Anniversary Edition of the book in 2006 and distinguished herself as an advocate for children. In the footsteps of former President Obama, as a campaign promise, Hillary proposed more federal funding to the states to expand access to universal pre-k for moderate to low-income families. This calls to mind what economist and Hoover Institution fellow Thomas Sowell astutely opined, “If politicians were serious about day care for children, instead of just sloganizing about it, nothing they could do would improve the quality of child-care more than by lifting the heavy burden of taxation that forces so many families to have both parents working.”

While many praised Hillary for her efforts and saw her as a champion for children, liberty minded Americans interpreted her village philosophy as an attack on the nuclear family and parental rights via the expansion of government programs. Nevertheless the “village” mentality took hold. In 2021, to the dismay of many, gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe said, “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.” By the same token, in 2023 President Biden said, “There is no such thing as someone else’s child. Our nation’s children are all our children” at a ceremony honoring national and state teachers of the year.

Our society is neither tribal nor communal. The notion of the “village” is none other than the government rearing its ugly head into the parent-child relationship and usurping parental rights. Poor decisions bureaucrats make regarding our children is having devastating effects on them.  This should give us pause. For decades parents have taken a back seat to educators and politicians while academic standards steadily declined. According to The National Assessment of Educational Progress, in 2022 only 31% of eighth-grade students and 33% of fourth grade students performed at or above the NAEP proficiency level. Likewise, in 2022 only 26% of eighth graders and 36% of fourth graders performed at or above grade level in math.

In New York City alone, spending on education has risen to $37.6 billion in fiscal year 2022. According to Susan Edelman of the NY Post (December 2021), the number of educational bureaucrats working at the Dept. of Education’s headquarters as managers, analysts, supervisors, and specialists, 2240 of whom are earning between $100,000 and $200,000 or more, has climbed from 3500 in 2014 to 5100 in 2022.  Policies are imperiously made by bureaucrats who are  disconnected  from the children and unaccountable when their policies fail. To make things equitable they lower the standards enough for everyone to pass.  As a result, high school graduation rates have gone up, resulting in a catastrophe for students when they get to college. You can only kick the can down the road for so long! State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli did an audit of college students that revealed only 57% were college ready and 37% dropped out in their first semester. Similarly, assistant dean of enrollment at Manhattan Community College Mohammed Alam said, “Most of the kids we get from NYC schools are underprepared for college.”

The “village” is failing our children academically. Perhaps parents should have more of a say in their children’s education despite the pushback from politicians, educators, and union leaders.  Part 2 of this article will appear in the next issue. I will discuss other ways the village mentality has been harmful to children.


As previously stated in part one of this article, “the village” Hillary Clinton referred to in her book entitled, “It Takes a Village and Other Lessons Children Teach Us” is none other than the government rearing its head into the parent-child relationship.

Unsurprisingly, the village mentality took hold. The feminist movement had peaked in the 60’s and 70’s. Many women had already been convinced to reject the role of wife and mother and enter the workplace. Motherhood, once considered the noblest of callings, was no longer respected. Feminists besmirched women who chose marriage and childrearing over careers. This came at a cost. The number of single parent households grew as did a host of other social problems. In 1980, 18 percent of women who gave birth were unmarried; in 2022, 40 percent of women who gave birth were unmarried.  By 2023, approximately 15 million children were living with a single mother and approximately 3 million were living with a single father. For lack of better alternatives many parents were convinced to let “the village” raise their children.

Bureaucratic agencies are indisputably incapable of successfully raising children, as demonstrated by the history of long-term failure of the child welfare system, the foster care system, and the Dept. of Education. Children raised by the government are much less better off. Despite their dismal track record, bureaucrats believe their power should remain unquestionable and unchallengeable as they continue to make policies harm children and undermine the rights of parents.

Up until the year 2000, courts upheld the clearly established fundamental rights of parents to determine their children’s upbringing and education. According to parentalrights.org, the Supreme Court’s ruling in Troxel v. Granville “opened the door for individual judges and states to apply their own rules to parental rights.” Parental authority is being subverted by “the village,” which has amassed the power to make educational and medical decisions for children that can potentially affect them for the rest of their lives, without parental consent. In New York City, minors can get birth control, emergency contraception, treatment for sexually transmitted diseases, abortions, and can begin socially or medically transitioning without the knowledge or consent of their parents.

We have reached a crisis point. Educators and medical professionals are part of an economically and politically powerful “medical-education-industrial-complex,” working to convince the public it is in the best interest of children to let them make potentially life altering medical decisions without parental consent or knowledge. Healthcare, which includes gender affirming care, is a rapidly growing trillion-dollar industry. There are currently more than 387 school-based health centers in NYC public schools; that number is also growing.  NYC Health and Hospitals has opened seven Pride Health Care Centers.  As of 2022 the number of gender affirming clinics in the US has grown from 0 to 100 in 15 years. Children are being marketed to – a practice that was once considered unethical.

Remember when the McDonald’s fast-food chain was accused of “exacerbating health problems” for marketing happy meals to children? In hindsight, that was trivial compared to the potential health risks posed by the gender affirming treatments educators, doctors, the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and other professional organizations are recommending for children.  It seems we’ve been down this road before. From the 1930’s to the 1950’s doctors were part of a campaign that convinced the public cigarette smoking was safe. From the 1930’s to the 1960’s surgeons convinced the public frontal lobotomies were a miracle cure for mental illness despite a fatality rate of 14%, the severe side effects, and the fact that the surgery had never been proven effective.  In the 1990’s big pharma set off an opioid crisis by convincing the public the widely prescribed drug OxyContin was less addictive than other opioids, though it hadn’t been proven by clinical studies. There are reasons for skepticism.

Despite the fact seven European countries have placed restrictions on gender affirming care for children under the age of 18, dissenting opinions about its efficacy and safety are suppressed in the United States. It is arguably unscientific; based on denial of reality and low-quality research. It a one size fits all approach to treating gender dysphoria, which ignores underlying mental health problems. The long-term treatment benefits of gender affirming care are debatable, but the evidence of harm isn’t.  Side effects of using hormones and puberty blockers may include chemical castration, osteoporosis, infertility, early menopause, weight gain, headaches, mood swings, and problems with brain development. Complications from gender reassignment surgery may include bleeding, infection, nerve injury, blood clots, scarring, decreased sexual function, and bladder problems. According to Ryan T. Anderson, Ph.D. from Heritage Foundation, “the world’s largest dataset on patients who have undergone sex reassignment procedures reveals that these procedures do not bring mental health benefits.” These procedures can have tragic outcomes. As per Anderson, the Obama Centers for Medicare and Medicaid pointed out that “The study identified increased mortality and psychiatric hospitalization compared to matched controls” and “mortality from this patient population did not become apparent until after 10 years.”

“The village” is battle going on for the hearts, minds, and bodies of our children who are being experimented on and used to promote a political agenda. Bonds between parents and children are being deliberately weakened, family values are being undermined, and the very fabric of our nation is being threatened. Children will struggle for the rest of their lives if this dangerous trend is not reversed. Parents must unite to protect them. The government doesn’t know what is best for them. It doesn’t take a village to raise children, it takes loving parents, a stable family unit, and common sense.

Email Elena at moms4libertyqueensny@gmail.com

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