Charge 'daggering' parents — Thwaites
EDUCATION Minister Ronald Thwaites is advocating for criminal charges to be laid against adults who engage children in inappropriate sexual activities such as 'daggering'.
The minister's comment came against the background of a recent YouTube video featuring two young boys dancing in a sexually suggestive manner with two women at a party to the delight of other patrons.
In the video one of the boys was fully dressed in a shorts suit while the other only had on his underwear as they 'daggered" the women on the ground. One person could also be seen pouring water on one of the little boys as he danced away.
Commenting on the video during the launch of Project Sprout, an early childhood initiative at Eden Gardens Wellness and Lifestyle Centre in Kingston last week Tuesday, Minister Thwaites said, "I saw a social media video and it took place, I think in Gregory Park... in broad daylight and there were about 150 people gathered on the street and there were two women spread-eagled on the ground and two little boys, one could be about five and the other about seven and they were daggering, simulating sex with these women to the great admiration of the crowd."
"Now when those little boys go into school there is very little we can do with them," the minister said.
"Frankly, the women, who are probably mothers, and the people who were egging them on as if it was a contest should be charged with a criminal offence," he added.
According to Thwaites, the occurrence is a prime example of people subjecting children to a loss of innocence and to an entirely inappropriate set of values.
"Now this is the challenge then of our nearly 3,000 early childhood institutions and those volunteers and contributors who are tasked with educating them. We have to decide what early childhood education is going to do going forward," he said.
Meanwhile, the minister also raised concerns that many parents were expecting too much from their children at the early childhood level.
"Many of our parents really think that these little ones ought to be learning their timetable and to be able to read and write by the time they get to grade one," he said.
"We have to get over this notion of parents wanting children to begin a standard of learning that really is not appropriate to their age," he said.
"One of the most important things in early childhood education is to teach the children sociability, manners, when to say 'yes sir' or 'no maam', how to honour our flag, when to sit, when to speak, when to be quiet, when to say yes, and because we are religious country, our children, must be taught who created them and who will save them," Thwaites added.
-- Tanesha Mundle