Australia News & Commentary

‘Digital Licence’ Program for Kids Could Potentially Allow the Government to Control the News Your Children Read Online

Keep the government out of the parenting role.

If the Australian Labor Party wins this year’s federal election, they’ve promised to back an ‘eSmart Digital Licence program’ for school-aged children worth $6-million.

Labor will also fund an ‘eSmart Media Literacy Lab program,’ for high school students, with the aim of teaching teenagers how to ‘engage with news online.’

News.com.au likened the electioneering to the (controversial) pen licence program.

They said the licence will be made available nationally, noting the program is only ‘currently available for schools which can afford it or have philanthropic support.’

The digital licence is the brainchild of the Alannah & Madeline Foundation, an anti-bullying charity founded by Walter Mikac AM, and dedicated to the memory of three Port Arthur massacre victims, Alannah and Madeline Mikac who were killed alongside their mother.

The foundation described the licence as, a ‘play and learn’ program which seeks to, “Build digital intelligence in students aged 10-14, giving them the knowledge and skills, they need to harness the opportunities and deal with the challenges of the digital world.”

The foundation’s values and vision mottos are: “Safeguarding our children’s future together, [with] every child living in a safe and supportive environment.”

What’s to like about this program is how it appears to have been designed by parents with the parent in mind.

What’s not to like is the precedent, and the prospect of an Australian Labor federal government – filled with groupthink, lockdown loving, militant COVID “vax” enthusiasts – getting their hands on another potential weapon they can use to further divide Australian society, and destroy the family unit.

There are good reasons to be concerned. Take a look at Labor’s ideological cousins in the United States.

Last month, in Michigan, Democrats told parents they were not primary stakeholders in their children’s education.

In a Twitter post (now deleted), the Michigan Democratic Party stated:

“The purpose of public education in public schools is not to teach kids only what parents want them to be taught…It is to teach them what society needs them to know. The client of the public school is not the parent, but the entire community, the public.”

Yahoo News reported last week, “Democrats and teachers unions are working to block bills proposed in at least a dozen states that would require curriculum transparency in schools.”

The justification for keeping parents out of the loop is a fear of censorship – which is comically bizarre for the New Left and its passionate embrace of cancel culture and lawfare.

According to Yahoo, “Democrats say curriculum transparency bills would only further embolden parents to censor certain materials and trainings, like those pertaining to critical race theory – CRT – a [racist] framework that involves deconstructing aspects of society to discover systemic racism beneath the surface.” (Parenthesis mine)

This correlates to the somewhat tongue-in-cheek assertions made by Joe Mathews in his mid-January, click-bait article, California should abolish parenthood, in the name of equity.

Mathews paints the ultimate “social justice” picture, arguing that the answer to disadvantage in society is to ‘make raising your own children illegal.’

He adds, “The left’s introduction of anti-racism and gender identity in schools faces a bitter backlash from parents. Ending parenthood would end the backlash… Democrats also would have the opportunity to build a new pillar of the safety net — a child-raising system called ‘Foster Care for All.'”

Mathews then calls for a “universal orphanhood,” smugly mocking Republicans with a dishonest diatribe about border control, while blurring the distinction between illegal immigrants, and “we waited in line” migrants and refugees.

Despite the spit and venom, the positive takeaway point Mathews makes is that equality of treatment and equity of outcome cannot co-exist.

The quality of education through a lens of equality involves parents. A “lens of equity” (as advocated by California’s Democrat Governor), ironically, excludes them.

In defence of a parents right to educate and be involved in education, the Republican National Convention responded, “Unions and activist school boards are gleefully enacting radical, far-left curriculum like critical race theory in states across the country, and it’s clear why they want parents shut out.”

The RNC backed their claim with examples such as:

  • In Oregon, Democrat Gov. Kate Brown signed a law that “drops the requirement that high school students prove proficiency in reading, writing, or math before graduation.”
  • In California, a high school teacher decorated his classroom with hateful posters that included slogans such as “F*** THE POLICE” and “F*** AMERIKKKA.”
  • In Atlanta, Georgia, Democrat elementary school officials segregated kids by race.
  • In New Jersey, new sex education standards – praised by Planned Parenthood and other far-left special interests – require that students as young as five years old are taught about “abortion as an option for pregnancy.”
  • In New York, a Democrat lawmaker is pushing to require children as young as eight years old to learn about “hormone blockers.”
  • In Virginia, officials are moving to eliminate advanced diplomas to pursue “equity” in education, and a school library included books on the subject matter of “pedophilia.”
    • McAuliffe vetoed a bill that would require schools to warn parents about these books.

This isn’t about censorship.

It is the wanton crucifixion of mums and dads who care enough to make sure that when their kids attend school, teachers actually teach arithmetic, science, history, comprehension, spelling and correct syntax, not groom their kids into joining the 2SLGBTQAAI+, and the BLM-CRT political religions, or associated cults.

An eSmart educational program is a commendable initiative, but not if the potential Australian Labor government gets control of it.

They cannot be trusted to use the program without seeking to piggyback onto it the social engineering of children, behind the veneer of “anti-bullying.”

Keep the government out of the parenting role.

The government should stick to building roads, infrastructure, preserving national identity, healthy traditions, and defence.

Teachers are no substitute for mum and dad.