Of course groomers see parents as the enemy, at Teen Vogue or in schools.
As in a horror story in which some trusted institution becomes possessed by an evil force, something has changed in youth culture and our schools.
Youth media has long (always?) fostered doubt about whether parents could really understand what their children were going through (as opposed to glossy magazines, Hollywood, and pop stars). As the evil force engulfed the town, the heroes’ parents might not believe the kids’ testimony, but they remained a source of safety, often stepping up to help save the day. Meanwhile, teachers were parents’ allies, usually reinforcing the primary importance of Mom and Dad.
A dark turn has changed the message such that parents are apt to be painted as the greatest danger children face. As I write in an article for Accuracy in Media, this attitude has spread not only among magazines like Teen Vogue, but also into schools:
The consistent theme is that the government should not trust parents with their own children. Whereas Rummler worries about too much regulation of public schools, a Teen Vogue article by Eve Ettinger and Nylah Burton demands more regulation in a different area of education: “Homeschooling is a system that can enable abuse and must be practiced in a way that centers the needs of students.” Again, parents are a danger, and activists in government must have the power to interpret, decide, and mandate what students need.
Obviously, the growing parents’ movement is a threat to these folks, who are worried that it may limit the ability of teachers who identify as sexual minorities to help shape the sexuality of minors behind parents’ backs.
Featured image by Iluha Zavaley on Unsplash.