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"By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; and by knowledge
the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches." ~Proverbs 24:3-4

The Children's Story:
A Chilling Tale for Parents

My mother-in-law once gave me a book by James Clavell called The Children's Story, which was originally written in 1963. She mentioned that it was really good and said I should read it, so I did. This was almost ten years ago, and the haunting images still remain vividly etched in my memory. Yet the story isn’t your typical psychological thriller or horror novel; it’s a shocking tale about the power an authority figure can have over impressionable young children.

The Children's Story is an obscure little book, but it’s an important one that deserves to be re-
discovered by a new generation. A thin paperback with less than ninety unnumbered pages, the text takes up only half of that because it's mostly printed on one side of the paper, often with only a single paragraph per page. It took merely ten minutes to read the whole book. But when I was finished, I couldn't believe what I had just “witnessed” – so I immediately went back and read the story all over again!

The Children's Story at first appears to be a cautionary fable of the Cold War, in which a new order has taken over. The enemy in this case is young, pretty, friendly, and speaks the children's language. Her message sounds reasonable at first, even believable. However, her ulterior motive is to methodically challenge and brainwash a classroom of children to turn them against their country, their parents, and even basic freedoms. Little Johnny was the one small voice of distrust, but he was also manipulated in the end.

Since this story was written almost fifty years ago and the Cold War is long over, you might think The Children's Story is outdated– but it’s not. The book’s implications are timeless and the theme is even more pertinent than ever considering what’s happening in public schools today (i.e. secular humanism replacing Christianity, the theory of evolution relentlessly taught as scientific fact, and homosexual propaganda directed toward children).

It's frightening to think how a child's mind is susceptible to being manipulated so easily – especially by those they trust, like teachers – and that it can happen within just twenty-five minutes in an elementary classroom setting. They may be brainwashed without even knowing it – and there is nothing parents can do about it once their children are in the system. Remember what Melinda Harmon, a federal judge, said back in 1996: “Parents give up their rights when they drop the children off at public school.” They may allow special interests, social activists, and anyone else access to students.

The Children's Story depicts the enormous power of teachers – for good or for bad – and it will make you think twice about whom you want to instruct your children. At the very least, The Children's Story should raise the awareness of any parent with kids in school to start asking questions about what is going on in the classroom. After all, our schools are supposed to be places of learning, not places of political indoctrination.

Schools are not the only danger, either. Our children can be molded by any individual or institution that is allowed to manipulate their thoughts – including television, movies, music, the news media and publications. Because innocent children are so vulnerable to influence, parents must be aware of what their sons and daughters are being taught, as well as the motive behind those teachings. Children may be oblivious to almost subliminal assaults on their value system, and if their beliefs are not strongly grounded they will be swayed.

Despite the title, I think The Children's Story would be too disturbing for children below the middle school level. The situation posed in this book raises many questions, making for a great discussion topic in high school or college. The Children's Story definitely should be required reading for all parents of school-age students. If you are a supporter of the Alliance for the Separation of School and State, you will love this book – and if you aren’t already familiar with that organization, you will want to join their campaign after reading it! (See

Consider the following scenarios from The Children's Story: What if a teacher said that the American flag was nothing but an old piece of cloth, and that the Pledge of Allegiance was a meaningless ritual? What if the teacher suggested to a class that praying to God was a waste of time? What if a child was told that his father had wrong thoughts? What if a whole room of young children were convinced that it was okay, and in fact good, to keep secrets from their parents?

These questions lead to even more thought-provoking points to ponder: If we don't teach our children morals, who will? Do we trust teachers with this job? Whose values do we then use? As parents, do we want our children adopting the values of others? Whose responsibility is the raising and training of children – the parents or the state? How much parental authority are we willing to hand over to someone else in bringing up our children? Do you know what is going on in your child’s classroom?

The Children's Story left me with chills up and down my spine, but at least I was able to breathe a sigh of relief since my own children are homeschooled. I wish every parent would read this book before sending their kids off to school. The Children's Story reminds us that we must teach our children diligently, especially in regard to such fundamental concepts as freedom, religion, and patriotism; and we must always be vigilant concerning their education. Because if you think it can’t happen, think again. The erosion of parental rights can already be seen in public schools across the country, as young children are manipulated with the use of sophisticated propaganda techniques.

For example, public school legislation recently enacted in California requires the indoctrination of six million children beginning as early as pre-kindergarten to respect homosexual and other sexually deviant lifestyles as normal and morally acceptable. In Massachusetts, a school superintendent ordered teachers to give parents no advance notice when discussing homosexual relationships with children, even in elementary grades. The concerned father of six-year-old was subsequently arrested when he went to the school and objected to the homosexual curriculum being presented in his son's kindergarten class.

Across the country today, many activist judges are denying the vital role of parents in the lives of their children, by inserting the government into a “parental” role. The resulting ramifications are both real and frightening. One boy complained to a school counselor that his parents made him go to church too often. Child Protective Services was called and they took him away until the parents promised that they would no longer force their son to attend church. A girl was grounded by her parents when they found out that she had been taking illegal drugs. As a result, Child Protective Services removed her from the home stating that the parents were restricting her freedom.

As if that isn’t bad enough, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child is approaching possible ratification by the United States. While this treaty may seem harmless on the surface, don't be fooled; it has dangerous implications for American families. If this treaty is made binding upon our country, government agencies will have the power to override your parental choices to advance its definition of “the best interests of the child.” If you believe that the right of parents to decide what is best for their children should not be undermined by government intrusion, please take a moment to visit the following website:

It’s really important that as many people as possible sign the petition. We need Congress to pass a constitutional amendment which will secure the vital liberty of parents in the raising of their children, to protect our own families as well as all future generations of Americans. If you are still not convinced about the urgency of this situation, please read James Clavell's The Children’s Story.

This article may be freely reproduced in its entirety with my byline. Please click here for details.


These pages are a continuous work in progress.
Copyright © 2000- by Teri Ann Berg Olsen
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