Friday, February 20, 2009

12-year-old steals day with pro-life speech

Teachers threaten disqualification, but girl chooses to speak against abortion. And a little girl's logic infuriates a pro-abortion "judge". Leftists HAVE to be right. They cannot bear it when they are shown to be wrong

Despite facing threats of disqualification, a 12-year-old girl took first place in a speech contest when she eloquently argued for the rights of unborn children – after an offended judge quit. "What if I told you that right now, someone was choosing if you were going to live or die?" the seventh-grader begins in a video recording of her speech on YouTube. "What if I told you that this choice wasn't based on what you could or couldn't do, what you'd done in the past or what you would do in the future? And what if I told you, you could do nothing about it?"

The girl, a student at a Toronto school identified only as "Lia," continued: "Fellow students and teachers, thousands of children are right now in that very situation. Someone is choosing without even knowing them whether they are going to live or die. "That someone is their mother. And that choice is abortion."

But what made the 12-year-old choose to speak about abortion? "It was really a family thing," her mother explained on the blog Moral Outcry. "I saw Lou [Engle] speak at a conference several years ago. I came back to my family with the Life Bands, and we all wore them, made our covenant, and prayed the prayer for abortion to end. … We were invited to participate in a 'Life Tape Siege.' Once my kids heard of this invitation, they all agreed: 'We have to do that!' Since then, Lia's passion for seeing abortion end has continued."

Despite Lia's enthusiasm for her topic, her teacher "strongly encouraged" her to select a different one for her class presentation or she would be considered ineligible for an upcoming speech contest. "[S]everal teachers discouraged her from picking the topic of abortion; she was told it was 'too big,' 'too mature' and 'too controversial,'" her mother wrote. "She was also told that if she went ahead with that topic, she would not be allowed to continue on in the speech competition."

Lia's mother continued, "Initially, I tried helping her find other topics to speak on, but, in the end, she was adamant. She just felt she wanted to continue with the topic of abortion. So she forfeited her chance to compete in order to speak on something she was passionate about."

Lia's teacher was so impressed by the speech that she allowed her student to advance as the winner. Lia presented her speech to judges in front of her entire school on Feb. 10. The school principal and teachers called Lia's presentation the "obvious winner" – but the judges suddenly disqualified her the following day "because of the topic and her position on abortion," her mother said.

Lia's father later revealed that the judges had a "big disagreement." One was offended by the speech and voluntarily stepped down while the others reversed their earlier decision – declaring her the winner.

Now Lia plans to take her message of life to a regional speech competition, and more than 130,000 visitors have viewed her presentation online. "Why do we think that just because a fetus can't talk or do what we do, it isn't a human being yet?" She asks in the video. "Some babies are born after only five months. Is this baby not human? "We would never say that. Yet abortions are performed on 5-month-old fetuses all the time. Or do we only call them humans if they're wanted?" She continues, "No, fetuses are definitely humans – knit together in their mother's womb by their wonderful Creator who knows them all by name."


Australia: Private sector rescues problem students

Violent, out-of-control students as young as four are fuelling the growth of a private school sector catering for pupils the public system doesn't want. With more than 55,000 suspensions handed out to state school students last financial year - a jump of more than 20 per cent in two years - Independent Schools Queensland acting executive director David Robertson said the "disengaged and at-risk" school sector was now a growth industry. He said four private schools already catered for problem students in Queensland's southeast, with a fifth to open at Deception Bay later this year. Two more are proposed at Logan and Springfield.

The Toogoolawa School, built for secondary school students by Queensland-based millionaire property developer John Fitzgerald at Ormeau, south of Brisbane, in 1998, has opened a primary school for the increasing numbers of younger students being excluded from the mainstream system.

Principal Gerry Moloney said his students' violence and anger often stemmed from bad home and family situations, and once they were given respect, proper time and appropriate individualised academic goals, their behaviour and attitudes turned around. He said the school recently enrolled a Prep-year student, facing expulsion, who was referred to him by a mother who didn't know what else to do. Toogoolawa students have often been through heart-breaking circumstances, with some housed in more than 40 foster homes, he said. Mr Moloney said they were able to turn more than 90 per cent of their students' behaviour around within six to 12 months.

An Education Queensland spokeswoman said the "growth in the numbers of school disciplinary suspensions" was evidence it was enforcing higher behaviour standards. This was "to ensure the best quality outcomes for all state school students without the need to resort to more serious disciplinary actions of an exclusion or cancellation of enrolment", she said. But exclusions - the start of the expulsion process - also have risen over the past three financial years. The EQ spokeswoman said expulsion figures were unavailable because they were collected on a school and district basis. In the past financial year 55,302 suspensions were handed out - with multiple suspensions recorded by some students - and 866 exclusion processes were initiated. In 2005 to 2006, 43,929 suspensions were ordered and 777 exclusion processes initiated.


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