Denounce ‘Religious’ Book that Encourages Child Abuse

Photo Courtesy of venetia joubert sarah oosterveld via Flickr

Target: American Family Association
Goal: To denounce the book To Train Up a Child as it advocates legitimized abuse.

A string of children’s deaths in which their home-schooling Christian parents are implicated are horrific in themselves. And yet, even more terrifying is that these abusive parents drew from one particular book for some of their violent acts: a self-published book called To Train Up a Child by Christian preacher Michael Pearl and his wife. Tell the American Family Association, an organization highly respected by devout Christian families, to denounce the book for encouraging child abuse.

The practices that the book advocates are, as Pearl often says, “the same principles the Amish use to train their stubborn mules.” Mischievous children are to be beaten with a switch or small amount of flexible plumbing line, which is ideal because “it’s too light to cause damage to the muscle or the bone,” as Pearl said in a recent interview. Pearl recommends that these instruments can be used on children as young as six months.

And yet Pearl stands behind his assertions after the deaths of three young children, the most recent of which occurred this past May to an adopted girl named Hana. The New York Times reports, “According to the sheriff’s report, [Hana’s] parents had deprived her of food for days at a time and had made her sleep in a cold barn or a closet and shower outside with a hose. And they often whipped her, leaving marks on her legs. The mother had praised the Pearls’ book and given a copy to a friend, the sheriff’s report said. Hana had been beaten the day of her death, the report said, with the 15-inch plastic tube recommended by Mr. Pearl.”

Besides the obvious issues of abuse, the Pearls’ practices bring about more abuse: “Mr. Pearl describes child-rearing as a zero-sum test of wills. If a verbal warning does not work, he said, “you have the seeds of self-destruction,” reports the New York Times.

Hundreds of thousands of copies of the book have been circulating and it is “especially popular among Christian home-schoolers, who praise it in their magazines and on their Web sites,” according to the New York Times article.

The American Family Association must speak out about the Pearls’ book before another child victim has been claimed. The practices contradict Christianity’s affinity for peace and advocate “legalized” child abuse. The proliferation of this monstrous book must be curtailed.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear American Family Association:

Recently, several children’s lives have been claimed by the forces of neglect and abuse in the homes of parents who have declared themselves to be Christians. The book advocating these practices as disciplinary measures is called To Train Up a Child, written by preacher Michael Pearl. The book, which is self-published, is being passed from parent to parent, couple to couple, inducing harsh physical and emotional abuses on children who by no means deserve them. As an organization that is well-respected among  Christian parents, your support is essential in stopping these horrific abuses.

The practices that the book advocates are, as Pearl often says, “the same principles the Amish use to train their stubborn mules.” Mischievous children are to be beaten with a switch or small amount of flexible plumbing line, which is ideal because “it’s too light to cause damage to the muscle or the bone,” as Pearl said in a recent interview. Pearl recommends that these instruments can be used on children as young as six months. But the horrors do not stop there: “Mr. Pearl describes child-rearing as a zero-sum test of wills. If a verbal warning does not work, he said, “you have the seeds of self-destruction,” reports the New York Times.

Three children have been found dead within the past year showing signs of abuse, including physical marks, malnutrition and even hypothermia (caused from being forced to sleep outside). Pearl’s book has been indicated as a point of reference for this monstrous parents, with them either singing the book’s praises or a copy of the book even being found in their home.

This must stop. The AFA can no longer allow abusive parents to use the excuse of “good Christian intentions” in their violent practices. Denounce Pearl’s book to preserve the lives of dozens of innocent children who find themselves at the mercy of unjust, violent and abusive adults.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Will Go Here]

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One Comment

  1. Amber Mendham says:

    I’m true faithful Christian. But I would definitely say that Michael Pearl and his wife are not Christians. Abuse is not what real! Christians do. I believe that both of them are lying about being Christians.

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