British Teen Petitions High Court To Wear Purity Ring genre: Hip-Gnosis

Daddy's Gold Key

Well there you have it...Christians are being discriminated against because a school in England has refused to allow an exception for a sixteen year old girl to wear her purity ring to school. Maybe I'm insensitive, but it seems to me that the last thing a sixteen year old schoolgirl should be focused upon is a court battle that contends her religious beliefs are being silenced. What kind of parent involves a child in pushing his or her own agenda?

Lydia Playfoot, 16, from West Sussex, says the silver ring is an expression of her faith and should be exempt from the school's rules on wearing jewellery.

"It is really important to me because in the Bible it says we should do this," she told BBC radio. "Muslims are allowed to wear headscarves and other faiths can wear bangles and other types of jewellery. It feels like Christians are being discriminated against."

There have been a series of rows in schools in recent years over the right of pupils to wear religious symbols or clothing, such as crucifixes and veils.

Lydia Playfoot's parents help run the British arm of the American campaign group the Silver Ring Thing, which promotes abstinence among young people.

Members wear a ring on the third finger of the left hand. It is inscribed with "Thess. 4:3-4," a reference to a Biblical passage from Thessalonians which reads: "God wants you to be holy, so you should keep clear of all sexual sin."

Lydia's father, Phil Playfoot, said his daughter's case was part of a wider cultural trend towards Christians being "silenced."

"What I would describe as a secular fundamentalism is coming to the fore, which really wants to silence certain beliefs, and Christian views in particular," he said.

No doubt secular fundamentalists see sixteen year old children as the focal point of their effort to silence religion...please?! What's next...a battle over the sacrificing of lambs on the playground? Frankly, I view parents of this ilk to be one step removed from child abuse. Children endure enough peer pressure and antagonism without having to champion mommy and daddy's causes. I can't imagine the damage they are doing to this young girl.

If you would like to know more about groups like Silver Ring Thing, visit this linked site which discusses Father Daughter Purity Balls...events I would characterize as quasi-incestuous rituals which are akin to dad attaching a chastity belt to his daughter and wearing the key on a chain around his neck...presumably granting him authority over his daughters sexuality because she is incapable of managing her own body.

Note the fact that mommy is apparently out of the loop. I would also note that I've not seen a reciprocal event called Mother Son Purity Balls...but then again, if one endorses a misogynistic society, why would any woman have a say in any mans sexual activity...because as we all know its women who are out of control and chasing men for sex.

Excuse me daddy, but if you need to have your daughter take a purity pledge, just who is it you fear would take away your daughters purity...some other father's son perhaps? Oh, I forgot…we accept that boys will be boys.

UPDATE:

I found some follow up information in another article that I thought was worth passing along:

In the US the organisation [Silver Ring Thing] received more than one million dollars (£500,000) in funding from the Department of Health and Human Services for its work to combat STDs and teenage pregnancies.

It was then taken to court by the American Civil Liberties Union for using federal funds to promote Christianity but the case was dismissed last year.

Whether the abstinence approach actually works is still controversial.

A study by researchers at Columbia and Yale Universities revealed 88% of chastity oath-takers had sex before marriage.

It also found that teenagers who took chastity vows had almost the same rate of STDs as other young people, because they were less likely to practice safe sex if they broke their oath.

But those who had taken the pledge delayed sex by an average of 18 months, married earlier and had fewer partners.

Note the content of the last paragraph. I studied psychology in college...and while I am by no means an expert on human nature...I would love to see data on these marriages in five years as well as the numbers of partners these individuals have in the future.

I suspect that the fact that these individuals married earlier is symptomatic of guilt guiding them to marry rather than break their pledge...and I doubt it leads to healthy marriages. I've also read that many young adults who have had abstinence only education have higher rates of oral sex...indicating that abstinence education may be a temporary deterrent to having sexual intercourse...but it may also lead to an increase in all other forms of sexual activity.

Try as people might to prevent it; sex is a natural human activity that shouldn’t become a pawn in today's culture wars. In the end, the damage being done to these young adults’ remains to be fully understood but I'm willing to bet that history will view this period of "purity pledges and purity balls" more like the Dark Ages than the Renaissance.

Daniel DiRito | June 22, 2007 | 10:14 AM
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Comments

1 On June 23, 2007 at 8:47 PM, Gappy wrote —

There's an article in the July issue of Marie Claire interviewing Lisa Wilson whose mom & Dad started the Purity Ball. Creepy. I wonder if the only role her mother played was to retrive the wedding beds bloody sheets to prove her purity.

2 On January 6, 2008 at 1:29 PM, Katie wrote —

Yo may have a point about the 'purity ball' thing but I have to disagree with you about the purity ring.
The ring is a symbol of a choice that the WEARER has made not the parents. Now, I'm sure in some cases the wearer may have been influenced by the parents to varying degrees but whether or not they were is not the issue. It is the wearer's right to keep it on their finger at all times including at school. It is not any different than a Muslim wearing a scarf or a Catholic wearing a rosary. It is a statement of faith and beliefs for that person.
Also your comparison of the purity ring and other such expressions of faith to sacrifices performed in the schoolyard was disgusting. There is no comparison and clearly you don't know much about religion and the meaning behind different practices. Whether or not you believe in something or agree with it, I suggest you research the truth about it before you use such extreme examples.
I may have a biased opinion here because I myself wear a purity ring and I made that choice myself when I was 14. I am now 24 and i still wear it. Someday when I get married I will give it to my husband on our wedding day. It will be my way of saying that I waited for him because he is my life partner. I will not throw that away to some random person in a heated moment and let me tell I have come very close. The thing that as kept me strong is remembering the promise I made to MYSELF and my future husband. I didn't do it for anyone else, not even my father and mother.
I have a lot of friends who are sexually active and while they joke abut sometimes and talk like it's no big deal in a group company, I know that's not always how they really feel. I know this because I have talked them one on one. In fact my best friend is a prime example. She has told me many times that she wishes she had waited. "It messes up everything," she says.
I do agree however that not enough attention is given to boys in this matte,r but it does exist and I have many guy friends who have made the decision to stay pure for marriage.

Just remember that being "open minded" should not only refer to people understanding your beliefs but you understanding there's in turn.

Be a truth seeker.

Thought Theater at Blogged

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Tracked on June 22, 2007 11:33 AM


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