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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Child abuse program held by Modern Study Club

The Modern Study Club held a Home Life Department Program recently entitled, "Child Abuse Through the Ages"- a study presented by Iris Reddick with the thought-quote: "And he lifted up his eyes and saw the women and the children, and he said, "Who are those with thee? And he said, "The Children which God hath graciously given thy servant." Genesis 33:5, (King James Version- Holy Bible.)

Etta Sullivan, chairman of the Home Life Department chose the quote, roll call, speaker, and planned the program.

Iris Reddick opened her talk with this comment- "As much as we love and cherish our children, their violent abuse and murder by adults, often parents, is also a part of the human condition and as old as recorded human history. She continued tragically and ironically most of us would not want to live in a society that was able to prevent every single instance of child abuse because that could be carried out only in a totalitarian state. At the same time all of us would like to prevent as much child abuse as possible in a relatively free society in which the values of family privacy and the pluralism of differing life styles are protected and supported.

Reddick told violence against children has been manifested in every conceivable manner: physically, emotionally, through neglect, by sexual exploitation, and by child labor.

She emphasized that the human infant, born helpless, is able to survive, and beyond that, to unfold his or her own unique potential only because adults provide, physical and emotional protection and guidance.

Child abuse and unusual customs in Ancient times were discussed citing several areas, countries, and traditions. Some children were a non-person until they received a name, other were plunged into icy rivers and in other places a baby refusing nourishment was thrown away. There was also much judgment concerning infants who had not been baptized before death, these born illegitimate, and those born where acknowledgement by the father was required. Illegitimate children were outlawed and especially liable to abuse; born "in sin" they were without benefit or clergy or inheritance.

Child labor, under the apprentice system, in workhouses, in orphanages, as well as industry, also brutalized children so as to have cheap labor. Some children were bound to their mastery by indenture for a period of seven years; this system of enslavement lasted until 1815. Pauper children were sold by the almshouses into apprenticeships and treated atrociously. As late as 1866 a Massachusetts legislative report hailed child labor as a boon to society.

As a little girl, Mrs. Reddick remembers in her native England her grandmother, who was born in 1800, talking of the abuse of little boys who were starved so they would be small and thin and could work as chimney sweeps. If the youngsters got stuck fire was put to their feet to make them move. Her grandmother also told her that children were left in the receptical at the work houses and the nunnery.

Mrs. Reddick's grandmother was one of six girls, they were told what to do every minute of everyday, they were not taught to read or write even though their parents were landed farmers. They were only taught housekeeping, cooking and serving. When they were old enough they were told whom they would marry. Mrs. Reddick's grandparents had a seventh child, a son, who was very spoiled and upon their death inherited everything.

She closed with these comments: Children faired very badly under the dismal routine of institutions where they suffered from deprivations and starvations. In Paris, France a street beggar could buy a child for a few cents and then would maim that child so he or she could more successfully beg in the streets.

Those in attendance received Shaken Baby Syndrome brochures giving facts we need to know, published by the Children's Trust Fund of Texas. They also received brochures giving facts we need to know, published by the Children's Trust Fund of Texas. They also received the pamphlet, What Happens When You Shake A Baby.

Joyce Morton, president of The Modern Study Club, presided during the meeting and conducted opening ceremonies. Nan Cate led the Club Collect and Etta Sullivan led the pledges to the United States of America flag and the Texas flag as those in attendance repeated all in unison.

Secretary Paula Fuller read the minutes of the previous meeting and Treasurer Pearl Gustafon reported on club finances. During the reading of correspondence a thank you note from Western District President Joyce Goldwire was read concerning her visit and gift. A no-bake bake sale was discussed to be held in support of our scholarship fund.

Lena Harpham, Federation Counselor, gave a report, "Girl's Night Out In Afghanistan." She talked of so many women taking leading roles, such as judges, politicians, doctors and soldiers, to name a few. And occurring more frequently as the global War on terrorism continues, is female fliers in combat missions over Afghanistan. Early on Jan. 31, a KC-135 Stratotanker took off from Ganci Air Base, Kyrgygstan, carrying more than 180,000 pounds of fuel and an all-female crew-both pilots, a navigator and a boom operators. The event marked the first all-female crew to fly an air fueling mission into Afghanistan from Ganci.

In new business it was voted to contribute $150.00 to the expenses fund of Catherine Travland, Second Vice-President of Western District of the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs, as she attends the state convention.

Roll call was answered by answering the question- "What are the individual citizens responsibilities concerning child abuse?"

Shirley Shaffer and Catherine Travland, Hostesses, served delicious refreshments to all in attendances.

Christian poetry sought

A $1,000 grand prize is being offered in a special religious poetry contest sponsored by Christian Fine Arts Society, free to everyone. There are 50 prizes in all, including a $1,000 Grand Prize, totaling almost $5,000.

To enter, send one poem of 21 lines or less to Free Poetry Contest, 9588 Thornbush Lane Fishers, IN 46038. Or enter online at The deadline for entering is June 23.

Poems may be written on any subject, using any style, as long as there is a spiritual inference. A typical poem might be a love poem, or nature poem, one that inspires the reader.

Be sure your name and address on the page with your poem. A winner's list will be sent to all entrants.

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