Someone asked me this week, "How is it that there seems to be so much strife in families recently, especially as we've seen it played out in the media?"
What they're referring to is child abuse, child neglect, children who are devoid of social skills and who are not loved or cared for.
There is no one answer, but there is a definite trend that can be observed. There has been, what has been called by some, "social engineering" or "liberalism" where there has been a slow erosion of family values. This has happened slowly over time. It is insidious and often sinister.
Take just a few issues:
• Poker machines are introduced with the suggestion that because we're all adults or big people, that we can control our impulses to gamble -- just tell that to the the young man who has lost his wife and family as well as the family home through compulsive gambling.
• Easy access to condoms, the pill and the morning after pill encouraging adolescents to explore and try it out -- tell that to young adolescent mothers.
• With drugs, a philosophy of "harm minimisation" that says something like "as long as they don't do themselves too much harm" then it's ok -- tell that to the addict who has lost everything.
• Legalisation of marijuana -- it's safe in small quantities -- tell that to the school drop-out who can't concentrate now, who hallucinates and who is developing a psychosis from substance abuse.
It's like we've said to a small child, "Here's a box of matches. Go play with them, but be careful and use them wisely." All this means is that we become desensitised to how to really live life effectively.
We're heading for a train wreck as a community.
What's the answer? Seems like there a few places where politicians have finally made a stand and where the government and the family have stood together and built a community on the same sorts of values. Take Singapore. It's safe and secure. I understand that places like Vancouver are similar.
There are some answers there. But do we have any pollies or leaders willing to stand up?