Warning: young children given books containing graphic violence
This is a letter in this week’s National Secular Society e-news:
We have a 4 year old son who has just started attending our local non-denominational community School. Last week, along with the rest of his year-group he was presented with an illustrated children’s Bible.
We were given the option to opt-out of this but did not exercise this because we didn’t want our son to feel excluded and trusted the school that the book would be age-appropriate. It was not and our son ended up in tears over the violent illustrations of the crucifixion.
Many other parents were unhappy and we personally are complaining to the school. We have subsequently found out that he Bible’s distribution and funding was carried out by a Charity – Bibles for Children. According to their website they are active in hundreds of primary schools across the country (there is a list in their annual report). We would like to warn other members with children who may be targeted by these people and who might want to take action against these people either on principle or in order to prevent their kids being exposed to images of graphic violence.
This is an illustration of the crucifixion that can be downloaded from an American site on the Internet, for children to colour in. As it’s in cartoon form, some young children may not be deeply affected by it. But is it appropriate to give children pictures of people being tortured to colour? Or to give them illustrations of the same subject?
We don’t have any examples of the illustrations from The Children’s Bible, but if your children are given one of these Bibles, please let us know. We’d like to see one.