Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Hazards of Parenting

I nearly threw up today at supper. But before I regail you with my tales of woe... indulge me... a little background is necessary.

Since we moved back to Tennessee we've allowed ourselves to sink some roots. We found a church we really enjoy... we give a lot there... financially as well as volunteering. Our boys have become quite the little rockstars there, as both are universally loved by all.

Jebidiah has even been going to pre-school there 2 days a week for the last several months.

Now... as I continue with my tale of this evening's unfortunate events... please remember... my son goes to preschool at the church we attend and support.

So.... back to today. Eli had eartubes put in this morning. The little fella (I say little because he's one. He's often mistaken for a 3-year-old by strangers) has had ear infections continuously and we'd had enough. Anyway... all went well. Nana and Papa had been here all day helping with things... and as usuall we sat down for a good family meal.

Also as usual Jeb said he didn't want to say the pre-meal prayer. No biggie. We'll just say a silent prayer. So... after everyone waits for me to take my hat off, we all bow our heads.

Then we notice mumbling... almost sing song.

I look up and see my son sitting across from me... eyes closed... hands clasped together... head bowed...

reciting the Pledge of Alligence.

DrWho later said I exhibited amazing restraint. I didn't interupt him. In fact I praised him. I gave no indication that I desperately wanted to puke.

I felt like my son had been violated.

What is a church preschool doing teaching my kid to recite something like that?

And what am I supposed to do? Apparently the whole class stands up each morning and recites this chant with their hands over their heart like the Hitler Jungen. Thats a powerful thing for a 4-year-old. Its not like I can tell him not to do it. He wouldn't understand. I'm not about to put my kid in that situation. I know full well what kind of damage that can do.

It sounds like he's getting pulled out of pre-school. Which is fine... he wasnt' there to learn anything... we just wanted him to make a friend or two and he's done that. Its not like he particularly enjoys it anyway.

But won't it be interesting around church when we become the couple that pulled their kids out of preschool because they didn't want them to say the pledge?

Won't it be even more amusing when folks assume our problem is with the Under God part? I can't wait to be accused of being a liberal. Wonder how they'll take it when I explain its the whole pledge I can't stand... but mainly its the "indivisible" part that I really can't take.

Honestly the playing of the national anthem and the pledge of allegiance only evokes anger in me. And the idea that my child has now somehow confused the saying of said pledge with prayer... just has me quite nearly blinded by rage.

I find myself in a debate that goes like this:

Keep your reasons to yourself. Just pull Jeb out and shut up.

Don't listen to that do-gooder. Blow up the church.

These people would never deliberately create this situation. Play nice.

Zip it Hippy! NATE! Blow up the church.

Don't listen to that moron Nate. You like these people.

Ah well... I'll keep you updated. I'm sure you'll all get a kick out of it.

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