The following is part of a series of articles on the rights and responsibilities of children and of families. On our site, we’ve published a Children’s Bill Of Rights, with all of the sections in the bill. You can take a look at Children’s Bill of Rights.
Right to their own ideas and beliefs
Every child has the right to their own beliefs and ideas, including the right to involve himself or not in any given religion or set of practices. This is the child’s right regardless of the beliefs of his family, or of others around him.
Every child has the right to his own creative ideas, and to express them through the arts or in other reasonable ways, as the child wishes. The child has the right to express those ideas free from degradation, critique or attack from others.
Every child has the right to his own reactions to ideas presented to him. The child also has the responsibility to learn enough about such ideas that he can determine for himself whether or not they are right or wrong for him. But the child’s reaction to any idea presented to him are his and his alone, and he has a right to it without reprisals or punishments.
Much of this has been discussed in earlier articles, particularly the first paragraph. Let’s focus on paragraph two, first.
It’s funny how many people tend to denigrate in some way the idea of a child going into the arts. There are just a few areas a person can spend a life in and participate in the very highest goals and accomplishments of a culture. These tend to be religion, science, politics, education and the arts, and not necessarily in that order. It’s not that other professions are not important or valued, they are of course. But what remains of a civilization, what we remember it for, is generally contained in these areas.
What remains of many ancient civilizations is largely their arts.
A song that people love will be sung far longer than any tank will roll. We still study the beautiful architecture of the Babylonian ziggurat. Shakespeare wrote his plays some 400 years ago, and Sophocles penned Oedipus around 2,500 years ago, and yet they seem as fresh and important today as they must have then.
The history books are filled with great artists, just as they are filled with religious or political leaders, great scientists, great creators of ideas. In looking at a child… Read Entire Article…