We have come to this meeting tonight to present our views on the proposed government rules and regulations pertaining to Homeschooling in the State of Hawaii.
In addition, those of us from Kauai have been asked by the Association of Home Educators of Kauai and many other Homeschoolers on Kauai who are not members of the Association to represent them at this meeting.
Anyone familiar with the Homeschooling situation on Kauai knows that
the vast majority of Homeschoolers on Kauai (approximately 90%) are Christians.
I have spoken to many of these Homeschoolers about these proposed government
rules and regulations and have found that the overwhelming majority of
the Christian Homeschoolers do not want ANY State interference in the training
and upbringing of their children. Most Christian Homeschoolers prefer to
have NO rules
and regulations in regards to Homeschooling. These Homeschoolers believe that a religious exemption would be the least restrictive means for them to raise their children and to carry out their Homeschool programs.
After meeting with Homeschoolers for nearly a year in various meetings
throughout the State (at least 5 on Oahu, 2 on Kauai, and 1 each on Maui
and Hawaii), it should be perfectly clear to the D.O.E and the B.O.E. that
most Christian Homeschoolers have chosen to teach their children at home
because of deeply held religious convictions. But, just in case there is
any doubt or
confusion on this matter, I want to reiterate our position:
#1. Christians believe that the BIBLE is the FINAL AUTHORITY in all matters - both in the Spiritual realm and in the Physical realm. (After all, the United States has only been around a couple of hundred years, while the Bible has been in existence for over 3000 years).
#2. We (Christians) believe that the Bible clearly teaches that OUR children are gifts from God - given to us as parents.
#3. We believe that the Bible teaches that parents have sole authority over their OWN children and it is the parentsí duty and responsibility to both train and teach their children and to direct their upbringing.
#4. We believe that the Bible teaches that EVERY facet of OUR childrensí lives is to be under OUR jurisdiction and control until they become adults. It is because of these beliefs that we do NOT separate the "Religious" from the "Secular" as non-believers do.
#5. We believe that every child in the State of Hawaii belongs
to his or her own parents (Christian or otherwise). OUR children belong
to us! We do not believe that the State has a legitimate interest, much
less a "compelling" interest in the training up of OUR children! We do
not believe that the State has ANY children! Hence we do not believe that
the State has any legitimate
claims on OUR children! To believe otherwise would be to embrace "STATISM", something that is abhorrent to the Bible and to our Constitution which was written to "LIMIT" government power and to protect our God-given unalienable rights.
If the Supreme Court of the United States does not have the power or the right to "define" Religion, we are not going to allow the State; or itís representatives; or itís agencies, boards and commissions to 'define' Religion for us (as some D.O.E. officials have attempted to do).
After searching out and studying the 2000 plus verses in the Bible dealing with children, I can truthfully say that there is NOT ONE VERSE in the entire Bible that even 'hints' that OUR children belong to the State. On the contrary, where applicable, verse after verse in the Bible clearly teach that God has given children to parents, and that it is the parentsí right and duty to train them up in the manner in which they see fit - without State interference. Let us make one thing absolutely clear ........ We (Homeschoolers) are not criminals!
We have NOT sought to deprive anyone of their Liberty!
We have NOT sought to deprive anyone of their Property!
We are not trying to be unreasonable nor do we want to be obstructionists (We must follow our Biblical convictions). It may be that some Homeschoolers will be willing to agree to submit to these new government rules and regulations, and while we may disagree with them, we also believe that they have the right to choose to do as their consciences dictate to them.
For the record let me repeat: Most Homeschoolers on Kauai do NOT want ANY government regulation of Homeschooling Period! Our being here, participating in these meetings, discussing new rules and regulations and meeting with the D.O.E. officials does not mean that we agree with or endorse the results of these meetings. Nor does it mean that we have any intention of voluntarily submitting to any government rules and regulations on Homeschooling that may be adopted now or in the future.
We do not labor under the modern misconception - that our Rights and Liberties are "granted" to us by some Legislature, Court, or Government. We KNOW that our Rights and Liberties have been given to us by God ..... As the Declaration of Independence states:
"We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among men, ..........."
We believe that it is unlawful for the State to interfere in any way with parentsí rights to train up their children as they see fit (short of obvious criminal acts).
I want to caution those Homeschoolers here tonight who are considering voluntary acceptance of these rules and regulations. Try to keep this issue in itís proper perspective:
No matter how "less restrictive" the government is willing to make their rules and regulations, remember, they are only compromising or giving up power - power which many of us believe to be illegitimate - power that can be easily regained by passing "new" rules and regulations.
However, on the other hand, we are being asked (or told) to voluntarily give up our LIBERTY, one of the most precious rights enjoyed by all mankind. Even the most cursory study of history will reveal that once LIBERTY is LOST it is not easily regained.
To the members of the D.O.E. and the B.O.E. I ask that you not mistake
our friendliness or our willingness to discuss these issues as a sign of
weakness or a change of heart on our part. We are more firm in our convictions
on these matters now than when we began to homeschool many years ago.
George H. Anderson Jr.
George H. Anderson Jr.
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