Category: parenting


The twenty-first century has seen a disturbingly regrettable trend of more and more parents of academically average children playing less and less active role in their children’s education during the school year here in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG). Every year, even before students can get into their summer flow, the back-to-school hype literally invades their minds via radio, television, and now the internet and telephone advertising. Parents are enthusiastically busy getting their children registered into new schools, buying books, uniforms and paying other preparatory expenses. But where do these parents disappear to after day one of the new school year?

A successful education system, such as we allege to have in SVG depends on the collaboration of the student, teacher, school, home and community. Learning is indeed a partnership. But partners in this education process are becoming woefully negligent and even uncaring. Years ago, it was the norm to find that parents would make it their business to know their children’s teachers, to keep in continuous contact with the school and to reinforce education policies and school decisions at home.

But today, the environment and world of learning that schools offer students in the classroom is tantamount to a fleeting fairy-tale feeling of bliss while at the movies, because after the school bell rings, many children are returning to homes and communities with very contrasting views on schooling and life values.

It is a reality we cannot afford to ignore much longer.

Generally speaking, the education policies, from the Ministry of Education to the individual school regulations, have been doing their fair share of keeping students on task and actively involved in their learning. But there is very little structure and support for the students outside their classrooms. As it is now, far too many children, some as young as those in primary schools, are being just left on their own to literally become young independents. They are home alone after school, they have no set bed time hour, they go wherever they want, they do whatever they want, and on mornings they are told by their parents who go to work and leave them at home, to get themselves ready for school ad go to school.

Of course, many of them don’t habitually go to school, or they go to school regularly late.

So the question is: Why is this generation of parents neglecting their most vital parenting responsibilities as regards their children’s education during the school year? Well, perhaps the following real-life incident might shed light on the causes.

When summer was ending in 2014 I was making my way through the market when some parents began talking about the reopening of school. “Let school hurry up open,” the first parent said. “Yes,” was the quick reply of a second parent. “I can’t keep any food in the fridge for this whole month of August.” A third parent then said, “My electricity bill went sky high because the children home watching TV every day.” Then a fourth parent said: “The other day I go home and meet the water hose turned on. The water run whole day because the child at home and been playing with the hose.”

The above comments suggest to me that the primary function of school for the average parent is to give them a relief from the “burden” of looking after their own children on a daily basis. Something is causing a paradigm shift in local parenting. This is evident from incidents when a parent is highly upset that she has to report to her child’s school because he or she was suspended. Long ago the anger would have been focused on the reason the child was suspended in the first place. Now it is aimed at the school for disrupting the parent’s “vacation” from life without the child around.

This parenting shift is also real when a parent can also declare in front of their child that they don’t love or care about that child; that their money, attention and love is going to the brother or sister at another school. That’s an actual development.

The time has come for parental courses, tutorials, help-a-thons or the like, to be made available for many parents. Many of them are proving unable–or unwilling–to cope with their basic responsibilities of parenting their school-going children.

No child asked to be born, so when that child is born it is the duty of the parent to start living a sacrificial life for the child; however, what is happening is that many parents wish to continue living as though they have no children. That is a recipe for the failure of the child.

Yes, parents may have to work, but they should not just accept that they leave home before the child wake up, or that they come home late at nights hours after the child reached home from school. Parents, you have an equal responsibility to make sure some mature adult is there before and after school.

Children are also  leaving home and returning from school with no adult to inspect or monitor the contents of their bags or pockets. The moral straying in this area is infinite. From not taking books to school to bringing back books, cell phone, drugs or money that does not belong to them, are all possible results because children are unsupervised at home or left unchecked.

When a child can buy their own uniform, stitch in the pants, or wear multiple pieces to school–something is wrong with the way parenting is done. When a child’s report from December is still uncollected in June–something is wrong with the way parenting is done.

Has the time come for parents of school-going children to sign a legal parenting contract which spells out specific things that they must do after registering their child, or getting the new bag, books and uniform for September?

Could it be that the twenty-first century parents are having children as a consequence of sexual activity, rather than having intercourse because they genuinely want to have children?

The answers to  those questions are critically important if schooling has to once again become the noble and proven way of giving indigent children an escape from poverty.

In too many instances, school is being reduced to a mere baby-sitting hub where children only give priority to the after-school lime with their fellow students from across the island when they gather in the capital city and stand at the bus stop for hours each and every evening.

Education is still a valuable asset, and schooling is still a fundamental necessity but we are fooling ourselves if we only make back-to-school an emotional hype of making a social statement and then abandon the children to sink in the academic seas of actual reading, studying and doing home-work. We should really not celebrate back to school without prioritizing going back to parenting.

 

 

 

 

save the future

“School shootings are in the news again. An Ohio teenager opened fire on five classmates, killing three students and injuring two others (see raw video from scene at Chardon High School). In Seattle, the 9-year-old boy who brought a gun to school and seriously injured a classmate when it accidentally discharged in his backpack was released on bail, after he appeared in court wearing an orange jumpsuit, in tears.

Children are injured and murdered every day, but school violence carries a symbolic potency because we like to think of schools as safe havens from the harshness of adult life. It’s horrifying to think that the institutions to which we entrust our children for hours every day could be a place of injury or even death.

(MORE: A Parent’s Perspective on the Ohio Shootings: All About Gun Safety in the Home)

But our focus on the word school — and even on whether the shooter was bullied by classmates, as it appears was the case in Ohio — obscures a key issue. The shooters didn’t get their guns at school. The guns weren’t fashioned in wood shop. The guns came from home, and they were obtained by adults.

Politicians and taxpayers like to hold teachers accountable for their students’ failures. Most of the public’s dissatisfaction with education seems to circle back to what’s wrong with teachers, and the assumption that drives our endless rounds of flagellation and reform is the belief that a child’s fate rests largely in the hands of the teacher in whose care he or she spends approximately 1,000 hours per year.

Yet the remaining 7,760 hours are on someone else’s watch: the parents. That’s right, children spend on average only about 11% of their childhood lives in school.

But we rarely talk honestly about what can happen during the other eight-ninths of their waking and even sleeping hours. Children arrive at school poorly nourished and too fatigued to work. They spend too much time on television and too little on exercise. They are poorly socialized in ways that inhibit learning and kindness. They also bring unsecured weapons to school and use them on innocent people, including, sometimes, themselves.

(MORE: Eighth-Grader Killed by Police: What Went Wrong)

There’s an eerie void in our discussions of school violence. Where are the adults? Where is the same cry for accountability in parents when things go wrong at home that we have for teachers when things go wrong at school? We aren’t suggesting that one human being can be responsible for every misstep a child makes. Nor are we suggesting that parents shouldn’t be allowed to make their own, often serious mistakes without fear of being criminalized.

But children are being injured and killed through the shameful negligence of the adults who are responsible for them. Roughly one-third of households with children report owning at least one gun. Forty-three percent of these homes report keeping firearms in an unlocked place, while only 39% of these homes keep the guns locked, unloaded and separate from ammunition, as recommended by the American Academy of Paediatrics and many gun-safety advocates.”

To read this article in its entirety, click on the link below. It is an article you should read as you empower your critical thinking skills.

School Shootings: Do We Blame Parents When Kids Have Guns? | TIME Ideas | TIME.com

Baby Born In Toilet

 

mom and baby

A young  woman’s first baby was born as she sat on the toilet. The baby dropped right into the toilet bowl. The incident happened in the climax stages of one of the most widely celebrated carnivals in the Caribbean—that of Trinidad and Tobago.

The mother is a teenager of nineteen who moments before the discovery had complained of “feeling hungry” and having belly ache.

The events unravelled at a local fast food establishment in the early morning hours, just as the business day was commencing.

A genuine humanitarian spirit caused a worker at the business place to enquire of the young lady who was seen overly rested.

Mysteriously, the teen mother declared she was just about five or six months pregnant. It seems likely she would have had little or no preparatory sessions for motherhood or for dealing with childbirth.

Her solo status signifies that the child’s father is not in the picture. However, the worker who came to her aid was a trained nurse’s assistant. God must have set up this particular encounter because the worker checked in the toilet bowl after the young lady had eased off the seat. It was then the baby was seen and pulled from the toilet bowl.

It is not the kind of birth that anyone would want to hear they had as they grow older. But the child started to cry after being raised from the waters in the toilet bowl.

The teenager happens to be living pretty much on her own, according to reports after the incident occurred. Hopefully, after she and her baby leave the hospital some individual or corporate entity will volunteer to take care of this single parent family.

Western societies are showing more and more open tolerance for the rights of the children within its demographic profiles and as such parents and other legal guardians and caretakers are having fewer options available for instilling discipline.

Over the years discipline has come to be somewhat synonymous with punishment or pain. The modern society seems to be saturated with its partnership with corporal punishment. No form of hitting a child or causing them any discomfort is tolerated. So what are parents to do?

First of all, discipline has to be seen as an activity that is happening throughout the life of the child. Too many make the mistake of waiting for the teenage years or for some obvious sign of wrong doing before intervention is made.

Constant communication is vital to effective discipline. Children do in fact love their parents who discipline them so long as it is consistently fair and clear.

The personalities of the parents or guardians must be taken into consideration as well. The disciplinary tactics that work for someone else might not necessarily work for you. Find out the areas that you connect well with your child or ward. What are your particular areas of strength as a parent? Are there some routine practices that yield good results?

There can be some situations that are hard to prescribe a suitable method of discipline, as shown in the picture below, but keep in mind at all times that it is the wellbeing of the child that must be of top priority throughout the disciplinary process.

steal no more

 

If you develop an early sincere relationship with your child from birth, if you keep your promises to your child, if you remain firm and unflinching in your standards then your child will eventually come to the realization that your actions are in her best interest.

Nonetheless, you can still learn from the practices, successes and failures of other parents’ attempts to discipline their children.

Philadelphia Police Pick up a Teen breaking the 9pm curfew

Last night was a historic occasion that marked a crossing of the Rubicon where government involvement in looking after children is concerned. In a move that has raised some eye brows the city of brotherly love is taking measures to save its teenagers. It seems that many of the parents are unwilling or unable to keep their teens under control.

Unfortunately, the majority of the children who have been congregating by using social media communication services are of black ethnicity. The mayor of Philadelphia, himself a black man, is fed up of the rowdy and antisocial behaviour of teens on the streets.

So what happens to the children who are out after hours?

Their first detention will see them being sent or taken home; in lieu of that they will be taken to the police station where their parents or legal guardians must pick them up. The children can also be fined anywhere between $100 and $300 on the first incident. If there is no involvement by the parents in a relatively short time then the matter will be investigated by the Department of Human Services.
But the parents are also being held accountable for their children’ or wards malpractice. The parents may be called upon to pay a fine of anything below $500. If their children continue to be out late at nights then the parents will be imprisoned for ninety days. And, of course, any damage or injury caused by their children while out after hours will be paid or settled by the parents.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

At last somebody has the grit to do something to save the future. I look forward to such a practice by the law enforcement in my country.

Finally, somebody has the guts to come out and say it! City officials in the city of brotherly love, Philadelphia, are putting their foot down. As of tonight, any person under age eighteen found out and about on the streets will be taken into custody. Additionally, the mayor’s office is sending a strong warning to parents that if their children have to be picked up off the streets after hours, then the law enforcement officials are likely to come after the parents as well.

I applaud the Philadelphia mayor!

The curfew is being instituted to deal with youth gangs and mob violence. And this is important. Many children, not only inAmerica, are growing up and living as adults before they understand what it means to be a child. This is a dangerous practice that has been ongoing for some time now in many societies. It seems that as soon as a child reaches puberty at age nine or ten he or she is an expert on marijuana use, alcohol consumption, sexual strategies and condom effectiveness. Our children stay out even later than the adults. These days, no body can use the F-u word more than our children. And they seem to invent new curse words, expressions and gestures every passing day.

All of this suggest that something is terribly wrong with today’s parenting. The problem stems from the glorification of sex and the “male sexual conquest”, especially of our black men. You see, men are being socialized–let me rephrase that: boys are being socialized by all around them (family, friends, the community) that all growing up is about is your ability to have and use an erection. All our young men focus on is how can a vagina be had.

The ultimate end is that while the female is seeking a stable relationship to have a family and to keep her man, the man is looking for non stop sex. When the woman figures out she is valued only for the relief of her partner’s back, problems occur. And when the babies come  on the scene, the men do not really love or want a child around them. For one thing pregnancy means sex has to be on the back seat for 9 months and after that the woman has to devote much of her time to baby caring. No time for private sexing. Also, the man has to face the realization that his woman is going to be expecting him to be supplying money to regularly take care of the child.

Most of our children are growing up realizing that their daddy really doesn’t want a thing to do with them. A lot of them leave to find “sense’ out there on the street. There is strength in numbers; the growing youth gangs is evidence of this.

In Philadelphia the local government is understanding the fundamentals of this. The mayor has said very sternly and clearly that if men do not want to take care of their children, they should not make them. The city is not running a baby sitting service, he warned.

Women have sex to start a family with one man. Men have sex so that they can get what the lady has. Men are not having sex because they want to be a parent. The men care aboutthe process, they do not care about the product.

Therein lies the societal problems of fatherless homes and street filled, angry, dysfunctional children. When this generation of boys in particular grows up, what is going to happen to families if they decide that because they grew up without a father then their children must do the same?

Human society may very well come like that of the animal kingdom where a male dog just goes looking for a bitch when it is mating season. Bam! Slam! Thank you madam. Then they walk away and do not look back.

Let us see how the curfew in Philadelphia turns out. More societies need to come forward with their own state implemented curfew. It is becoming quite clear that mothers alone cannot control or rear their children. Look at the many children involved in the London riots. Even girls were arrested.

It is time, too, that parents be asked to attend parenting classes, especially our men. In fact, any man who registers having more than one woman at a time, or who has been in relationships with different women during a six month or a twelve month period should be made to attend such classes.

If not, these parents of at risk children should be held accountable and be confined to supervised labour where the rewards of that labour goes directly to the woman and child (women and children) not being taken care of.

Something has to give. Otherwise, it is society that will give way.

(Video is included below)

Summer is the time of year when many families pack up and take to the road for their get away vacation. Many others travel as part of their summer package of fun be it at camps or visiting other relatives.

The adventures of summer usually last a life time.

Three siblings of the Dougherty family have recently took to the roads and highways of the states to redefine summer fun. The brother and sister, along with a half-brother were fulfilling a childhood fantasy that most of us adults entertained, if only briefly, while we were growing up. It was the classical tale of police and thieves.

What happened on the streets of Florida through Colorado was no movie set. There was non-stop action. At one time the mother of the siblings even went on television to appeal to her children to give themselves up. One of them replied with the words: “There is a time for each of us to die.” I guess that is a family to die for.

The daughter had posted her “dating pitch” to potential future mates: she said she loves to create mayhem and shoot guys! Hmmm. Does anyone have a death wish?

While on their mobile adventure, the trio allegedly robbed a bank, shot at a police officer and was constantly the target of high speed chases which eventually ended in their capture.It is a rarely seen situation where brothers and sisters will join in running a foul of the law. Normally, one would expect that one of the siblings will convince the others to refrain from becoming outlaws. However, the young Dougherty gang  gained national news coverage and youthful notoriety.  A picture is worth a thousand words, so you can view the video below. It might take the usual few seconds to load but it is indeed quite coherently informative and relevant.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Justin Bieber                                                          

Until a couple years ago the words Justin Bieber only meant an identifiable expression to close friends and family of the then unassuming child. But many things in life are connected to the proverbial domino effect and so with the advent of the Internet and its cousins–the social networks–the circumstances were aligned for a little known Justin to upload some simple home videos for mutual family fun and bonding.

Since then the name Justin Bieber has become unanimous with teenage stardom and the all pursued get rich quick philosophy of the masses of “huslas” youths. Justin has had a sudden change of status and his whole living experience really, that most can only hope to come close to experience via the movies or a good book.

The  global following that he has received from his fellow teens have been largely due to his down to earth attributes as a person. talk with his childhood friends and those who first  sampled his music and you are sure to find out that it was Justin’s physical features, voice quality and humble personality that generated an ascent to the position of a teen idol.

The world probably needed someone to come on the scene at the time when Justin did. One of the world’s most recognizable face and voices had just been silenced. Michael Jackson, how for so many years had epitomized life itself by his extraordinary performances died in 2009. The world of pop music was therefore in some form of mourning and had a vacancy to fill.

A close look at the new multimillion dollar star will now reveal some rather grown up changes that may be an indication that the Justin Bieber that the virgin fans fell in love with has evolved into the superstar Justin Bieber. Fans will observe that his outfits are taking on a permanent on-stage look and the teen is also brandishing earing(s).  The hairstyle is no longer reflective of the simple down to earth child of a few years ago.

One of the biggest changes though, probably has to do with Justin’s emotional or love life. He has, after a few days of denial, jumped headlong into a relationship with Selena Gomez, another teen performer. While they both undoubtedly will have some things in common, one has to wonder to what extent Justin is in control of his personal and even professional life. The world has been privy to the couples rather intimately romantic adventures.  It is no accident that the word virgin was used earlier in this post; however, has stardom catapulted Justin from his own virginity or to embark on a journey of validating the “new cow” theory? Not too long ago the viral information was of a possible break-up of the teen couple over a simple text from Justin to another young lady.

Justin and his girlfriend

Justin’s parents in the earlies were doing what they could to ensure that their son still has a normal coming of age experience. Somehow I don’t think that the influx of monies from performances, product deals and royalties are compatible with that. A look at the  personal lives of stars will reveal that in over 90% of the cases, their relationships seem to last as long as the pair of shoe that they wear. Has Justin been prepared for the emotional seesaw of relationships, especially at such a tender years?

Being a globally recognized figure is always fun. Until it sets in that the media never, ever stops following your every move and action. While Justin has a competent team of advisors I can’t help but wonder if his young emotional needs and concerns are at the heart of the advice given to him. When your friends or advisors suddenly start seeing you as $$ signs and no longer as a human being first—things will never be the same.

The history of child stars as well shows that in too many cases, particularly after their careers have matured and reached a state of decline, they are unable to make a smooth adjustment to life as a regular guy again. Some years ago Jonathan Brandis was a handsomely popular television star. He hanged himself in his room after his career started sliding down a slippery rope. River Phoenix, backed by fame and fortune, sacrificed his existence to illicit drugs usage. Recently, Amy Winehouse died from complications it would seem stemming from alcohol use. (I was wondering the other day if it is a coincidence that someone  with the name Winehouse became an alcoholic).

The intent of this post is to act as a catalyst for a modestly objective but urgent intervention at rehabilitating Justin Bieber so that he can handle his new life. The information suggests that Justin is being considered as a “brat” by persons who are closest to him in his business ventures. He alledgedly made a lot of passengers on a recent flight very uncomfortable by his actions. He refused to give the pilot an autograph as well. Refusing autographs seems also to be a new habit of Justin’s. It seems to me that something is going to give soon where Justin’s stardom is concerned.

There are more negatively ending lives and careers of once-popular child stars that  are all around. Is Justin Bieber surrounded by genuine people who don’t put money-making above life-saving? Is Justin happy with himself? What plans are in place for life after the stage or the glitter of it all?

The Most Recent Satellite Image Shows St Vincent and the Grenadines being Affected by Stormy Weather

Anytime. Anywhere. Anyhow.

Those three words practically sums up the open vulnerability of human beings to natural disasters. Every geographical location on the earth’s surface is under the potential destructive effects of some form of natural disaster. So it makes little sense to  run away from the tornadoes or heat waves in Oklahoma and come to St Vincent and the Grenadines (not that we wouldn’t welcome your visit). But here in the Caribbean we have to contend with earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, fires, flooding and land/mudslides and hurricanes.

There is no 100% preparedness or prevention strategy that we can use against the damages caused by natural disasters, but, just as we try to prepare for the death of a loved one, we also try to prepare for disasters so that we can take out a bit of the sting out of the disasters. The hurricane season runs from June to November but one should not wait for those six months to be prepared. There are simple steps that can be taken all year round.

One of the simplest things to do is to keep a clean quantity of water stored to last your household for a couple of days ( a week will be good). You can change that water every couple of months by using it for washing or some domestic purpose. Make sure your stored water does not become a mosquito breeding ground. That in itself can ignite its own disaster.

I wish to use my blog to suggest that all homeowners and contractors working with financial institutions incorporate a permanent water storage facility in the home mortgage. Similarly, each home mortgage can also have its own  solar  unit attached . These two important fixtures may be costly initially, but in the long run, believe me, they will not only for themselves but may also save lives in the process.

A few years ago, while at a government function at the Methodist Church Hall I was scolded by a lady from the Grenadines who was openly upset at the amount of water mainlanders have running freely while they in the Grenadines were rationing their daily use of water.

Let me return to my focus. In order to be ready for a disaster as well, as a people we need to know what alternative means of communication we will resort to. It is always predictable that electricity and telephone services are among the first casualties in a storm or disaster. Let me suggest that each village, if not each household, should have access to a CB radio or other emergency broadcast equipment. I  think it is crucial that when a disaster has struck, telephones are dead, roads are blocked and citizens injured, then the rural communities must know exactly what to do, and even who should do it.

Although NEMO is doing quite a commendable job of sensitizing  the population on proper disaster preparedness strategies, one of my concerns is who or where do villagers go in the immediate aftermath of a disaster such as a hurricane. While I was in Grenada I listened to Grenadians tell of their experiences during and after Hurricane Ivan. Even though several years has passed since the utter destruction from that September 7 hurricane in 2004, you can still hear the fright in their voices as they share. I vividly recall one young lady telling me that the church that her family and other villages ran into just as the storm started was basically destroyed in minutes. She said she panicked when she saw her mother–her tower of strength–bawling down the place because of the loud noises and darkness of the heavens. The glass windows of the church building did not hesitate to allow the heavy winds entry into the building.

Under such circumstances of chaos and terror I think it is imperative that villagers know who to turn to as they await help from the authorities. That is, providing that the authorities still exist and can respond. It is most likely that a plan of action has to take into account use of secondary roads or just “short cuts” because most roads are often blocked by landslides.

Families should also know where the closest emergency shelter is located. They should also have a plan in the event tha they are separated. maybe they can agree to communicate or meet at a neighbour’s place, for example.

Stocking up on durable food items is a good practice. If your family is large, buy the basic grocery items in bulk. Be ready to eat fruits and vegetables that may be in abundance after a storm.

It is not a bad idea to take the time before a disaster hits to volunteer with your local Red Cross and learn some life-saving skills. Who knows, you might be the only doctor or nurse at the scene of a serious injury resulting from a natural disaster.

A good effect of natural disasters is that it automatically breaks down any and all walls of divisions between people. And maybe that is something that every people group needs: to see each other as family,and love, care and help because it is just the right thing to do.

I guess there is no parent who finds it easy to relinquish their protective hold on their growing children, particularly the girl children. It is nature that from the onset of puberty and the activation of hormonal changes, the child now enters a world of some experiences that at first may be scary or unwelcomed. I am certain if you quiz a sample of the ladies you know about their reactions to their  first menstrual cycle, or “period,” you will almost certainly get at least one tale of a very frightened little girl who was scared to death because she believed she was about to die from bleeding.

And that female baptism into puberty has propelled many a parent to say to their baby girl, “You can’t play with boys anymore now.” The confused child is left wondering why.

But in some parts of Africa, the motherland of us Blacks here in the Caribbean, parents have found an easier way to safeguard their young adolescent girls against an unplanned or unwanted pregnancy.

As soon as the girl begins to develop physically into the  coca-cola shaped adult, she will begin to have a daily dose of breast ironing.

Older readers may recall  rural life before electricity and the electric iron. Do you remember having to keep the  “iron” in the coalpot until it was red-hot?  Two alternating irons would be used to maintain the required heat at all times during the ironing process.

Well, for these girls in Africa, it was not school uniforms or church clothes that are being pressed; it is their precious growing breasts. (Their parents  really do not want the girls shaking what God gave them.)

The idea behind the ironing of the breasts is that the repeating exposure to the intense heat would slow the growth of the breasts; therefore, if the breasts do not become protruding or give rise to cleavidge, then the boys and young men will find the girls less sexually attractive and will not pursue any relationships with them.

You will have to determine if the ends justifies the means.

There are also documented situations among tribal groups in Africa where, instead of ironing the breasts at puberty’s inception, an older male relative of the girl will have sex with her and make her pregnant,  thereby averting any future relationships with the boys in the village.

Again, you decide if the ends justifies the means.

So, most of us are in the Caribbean because our foreparents came across the Atlantic as slaves. Who knows, if not for slavery, maybe you would have been in Africa right now under a hot iron, having your breasts ironed.

Slavery actually has some good in it, right?

On the other hand, the annual statistics released from the statistical department continues to show that teenage girls in this country continue to give over 300 births. That is a staggering realization. Each year, over 300 of our age 13-16 girls are getting pregnant.

And if you can get pregnant then you can also get a sexually transmitted infection like AIDS.

In 2000, the St Vincent and the Grenadines Family Planning Association conducted a research called Save the Nation’s Face in which they found out that by age 13, one of every four (25%)  Vincentians was already having sex; by age 18, three of every four (75%) Vincentians were having sex.

In light of the just mentioned figures, will our society benefit if we start the practice of ironing the breasts of our young girls here in St Vincent and the Grenadines?

The above stats  will mean that only 25% or one-quarter of the Vincentian population at the legal adult age are virgins. But that was almost twenty years ago. There has been a proliferation of condoms, even for women today, so one might probably be safe to assume that the percentage of Vincentian virgins has decreased since the early 2000s.

So, was a former Vincentian prime minister right when he said that Jesus could not have been born in St Vincent because there are no virgins on the island?

Hmmm…..let us think critically on these things.

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