Observer – Schoolgirls are forced to take off chastity rings – or be ordered out of lessons: Heather and Philip Playfoot have spent almost two years in dispute with Millais School in Horsham, West Sussex, over their 15-year-old daughter Lydia’s ring. While the school’s uniform rules forbid jewellery, they argue that the rings – given to teenagers who complete a controversial evangelical church course preaching sexual abstinence – hold genuine religious significance… Her ring came from the Silver Ring Thing, an evangelical initiative recently introduced to Britain from the US, with which her parents’ local church is involved… The issue has now been taken up by the Tory MP Andrew Selous, chair of the Conservative Christian Fellowship, who raised the wearing of purity rings with the Schools Minister Jim Knight in the House of Commons last week.
Well done, Andrew Selous… you bold Warrior For Christ, you.
The UK Today – The Silver Ring’s The Thing: Silver Ring Thing promotes a highly suspect doctrine, in a manner that is almost cult-like. To try and use legislation in the manner suggested in the article would be to set a dangerous precedent, and I would give my wholehearted support to the governors of Millais School in Horsham, West Sussex.
The Silver Ring Thing is a Christian recruitment drive dressed up as a health initiative. At least, that’s the position they needed to maintain while they were earning federal funds in the U.S. (to the detriment of health and education services involving actual education about health). But when they reach a tricky moment like this, suddenly it’s All About Faith? Puh-lease!
The following cannot be repeated enough… Denny Pattyn, founder of the Silver Ring Thing, is a lying scoundrel and a danger to children.
Here’s proof from the man himself. When he spoke these words, he was well on his way to earning over a million yankee dollars in federal funding on the basis that his was a ‘health and education program’…
Denny Pattyn: “I believe that the end of the world is approaching very quickly and I believe that Christ will come back. I think about that. I think that I might just be living in the Last Days…. We’re not really putting our energy into abstinence as much as we’re putting it into faith. Abstinence is the tool that we’re using to reach children.”
Even with frank admissions like that on the record, it wasn’t until August of last year that this finally happened…
Washington Post – Federal Funds For Abstinence Group Withheld: The Bush administration yesterday suspended a federal grant to the Silver Ring Thing abstinence program, saying it appears to use tax money for religious activities.
Denny Pattyn is not out to protect young children from unwanted pregnancy and venereal disease (remember; this is his lead pitch and the foundation of his former federal funding)… what he really wants to do is get as many recruits as possible before Jesus returns and starts calling the troops home, even if it involves breaking the 2nd, 7th and 8th commandments in the process.
I’m sorely tempted to introduce a special programme for all children who wish to take a solemn vow in opposition to this abuse of faith, with personalised rings that read; “GO FORTH AND MULTIPLY*”
(*Intended as a special euphemistic message to Denny Pattyn, obviously. Let’s not insult the kids by assuming that they’re stupid.)