The USA is not a safe place to send kids

When I was 17, I spend a year as a student in rural Canada, which resulted in a lot of culture shock. But you’re told about that when you prepare for your trip, and also that the Canadian families are very likely going to be much more religious than what we were used to. The kids who went to the USA got similar speeches, and sometimes their experiences were similar to mine. Very often however, the experiences went like this instead:
Polish Exchange Student in US: My Half-Year of Hell With Christian Fundamentalists

For example, every Monday my host family would gather around the kitchen table to talk about sex. My host parents hadn’t had sex for the last 17 years because — so they told me — they were devoting their lives to God. They also wanted to know whether I drank alcohol. I admitted that I liked beer and wine. They told me I had the devil in my heart.

My host parents treated me like a five-year-old. They gave me lollipops. They woke me every Sunday morning at 6:15 a.m., saying ‘Michael, it’s time to go to church.’ I hated that sentence. When I didn’t want to go to church one morning, because I had hardly slept, they didn’t allow me to have any coffee.

One day I was talking to my host parents about my mother, who is separated from my father. They were appalled — my mother’s heart was just as possessed by the devil as mine, they exclaimed. God wanted her to stay with her husband, they said.

or like this: Chinese Atheists Lured to Find Jesus at U.S. Christian Schools

When Randy Liang wanted to study in the U.S., his parents’ friends at a Christian group that provides medical and small business services in Shanxi Province recommended Ben Lippen. He enrolled in January, 2010, as a sophomore, largely unfamiliar with the Scriptures and the English language.

He “really hated” the school at first, he said. “I thought they were trying to force me to be Christian. I couldn’t understand what they’re talking about. I thought, ‘This is boring.’”

Liang adjusted as his English improved and he joined teams in four sports: football, wrestling, cross-country and track. After watching a creationist video in Bible class, he developed doubts about evolution. Now a senior, he prays with teammates before games, he said. He lives in a teammate’s home, and prays with the family for success on exams.

or like this: High School Exchange Students Housed With Murderers, Sexual Predators

One of the most shocking cases alleges that at least four exchange students suffered sexually abuse over the years by the same host father — even after the first student to stay with the host reported the incidents, NBC reported.

“He said ‘this is American culture,’ and I should get used to it,” Christopher Herbon of Germany told NBC News.

or this: Exchange students live American nightmare

Jarbola said a girl from Norway, who asked to be identified only by her first name, Anne, tried to alert officials that she and some of the students were in dire straits.

Anne told CNN she had school officials send an e-mail to Aspect in October explaining how bad things were and including photographs of the inside of the home where she was placed. The home was later condemned by the city.

Anne’s high school principal took her in, but other students weren’t as lucky and spent nearly the entire school year in unsafe homes, until Children and Youth Services was tipped off about a month before school ended, Jarbola said.

Jarbola, who said Anne’s e-mail is now evidence in the criminal investigation, told CNN that when welfare officials interviewed the students, one was so hungry he wept when they gave him pizza during questioning. In all, five of the students were removed from homes where they’d been placed by Aspect.

and even though the last article is peppered with references to how very seriously the State Department is taking the cases, the end result of that taking it seriously was that the State Department requires prospective host-parents to photograph their houses and provide “outside” references, and not much else.

And exchange programs are not the only way in which bringing foreign kids to the USA can end up extremely dangerous. For one, the same reasoning that leads Fundies and Fundie schools to try to get foreign students to come to the US is also fueling the adoption-craze among fundie Christians. In the past, there have been reports of abuse related to the Fundie “To Train Up A Child” abuse manual, or the “adoptions” of Haitian “orphans” post-earthquake which turned out to be kidnappings, and other such reports. Now, there is another report about “re-homing” children, which is basically about treating international adoptees like pets, to be dumped when they become inconvenient, often onto the first person who volunteers to take them in (which, unsurprisingly, sometimes turn out to be child abusers of various kinds); and again we hear of the complete lack of oversight by US government.

It’s no wonder than that many countries are wary of sending minors to the USA. In the past, some exchange programs stopped offering exchanges to the USA; and many countries also block adoptions to the US, or insist on being able to track the well-being of these children themselves.

10 comments on “The USA is not a safe place to send kids

  1. Kathy O says:

    You are right that USA is not a safe place. Schools are not safe too. A kid in my neighborhood was molested by her KUMON Math & Reading teacher.

    http://tr.im/4f27j

    Many other kids at that Kumon center were molested for a long time. The teacher was finally arrested at convicted. The children who were victims had to fade away into the shadows. One can only guess that the Kumon company must have spent millions to keep their dirty little secrets hidden from public view. No one talked about this. Who knows? There may be many, many children being molested at many other tutoring centers like Kumon. The children who are victims of sex crimes end up being voiceless souls. Kumon and all other asian tutoring centers should be banned from operating in the United States.

  2. Tiara says:

    Why does one Kumon center housing a child molester mean that all Asian tutoring centers should be banned? Molesting children is not part of Asian tutoring culture. Way to make a racist extrapolation there?

  3. Mary Vinter says:

    Thank god!We are living in Canada.My kid is studying in a Co-ed private elementary school in Toronto.Till not no one have reported such a case their school.When i read such cases in newspapers i feel nervous!

  4. NotnAmerican says:

    USA in general is not safe as its the world’s biggest pile of crap filled with lunatic people with massive egos.

  5. DF says:

    Re:Kumon Mathe and Reading centers sex crimes against children

    What parents should do if a child tells them that he/she has been sexually abused

    Children rarely report abuse during their victimization and nearly 80% will deny the abuse. Adults must be alert to signs of sexual abuse.

    If a child does tell you they’ve been sexually abused, take the time to really listen to them when they want to talk. Believe what you are hearing no matter how impossible it sounds. Remember that 90% of abuse is done by someone the child knows, trusts and loves.  

    Assure the child that they are doing the right thing by telling and you will get help. Never blame or punish the child or show anger.  It is difficult but you must control your emotions. Your reaction to the abuse might be viewed as directed toward the child.

    Reassure them that you are not angry at them. Don’t take notes while the child is talking to you. Listen intently. Then quickly document the disclosure.

    If you are an employee or volunteer and hear of the abuse, immediately report the incident to your supervisor, but keep in mind that you are a mandated reporter and you have an obligation to report the incident to the proper authorities. If you represent the organization at which the abuse occurred, you must report the child’s disclosure to law enforcement or child protective agency as specified by the laws in your particular state.

    If you report the abuse to a higher authority, supervisor or report it to law enforcement make sure you follow up to see that the problem is being addressed.

    If your child us being sexually abused by a teacher at a Kumon Math & Reading center or any other learning center or school report it to law enforcement.

    Usually such edutakes the approach of complete denial, report it to the school board and law enforcement, create a paper trail and contact the District Attorney’s office where you live. You may even have to contact an attorney.

    In the Naples, FL case where teacher Steven Noyes was accused of sexually molesting a 9 year-old student, the police dropped the ball on the case. Don’t let this happen to you.

    And NYS Arbitrator Paul Zonderman said he is neutral, and that he stands behind his decisions to not fire city teachers for various offenses. “Sometimes you go with the union. Sometimes you go with management.“

    Schools are culpable. Hopefully they’ve done their due diligence with background checks. Yet more needs to be done.

    Sign our petition to have stronger and more frequent background checks on teachers so we can keep our children safe at school.

    Lastly, if you are or were a victim of child sexual molestation and didn’t tell – PLEASE TELL! It is so important to report it.

  6. GK says:

    Well Kumon places are full of problems. When I say problems, I don’t mean worksheet problems LOL. I mean real problems like crime and sex. Check this out, daughter of Vickie Kwon, a North Korean immigrant and owner of two centers of the tutoring company Kumon Math & Reading. Prugo claims,“Rachel hates her stepfather,” whom her mother married when Lee was in her early teens.(Neither Lee nor Kwon responded to requests for comment.)”

    Maybe this story will enlighten you:

    http://thenocturnowl.tumblr.com/post/11993522057/epic-fail

    Story of more criminals at Kumon Math & Reading centers:

    http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/features/2010/03/billionaire-girls-201003?currentPage=2

    http://rokdrop.com/2010/03/06/bling-ring-leader-rachel-lee-daughter-of-north-korean-immigrant/

  7. Lester_Kasim says:

    What floors me is how the parents are so concerned about the test scores and academic grades, and not concerned about their children. Forget the test scores, I’d be worried my child had been raped or sexually assaulted. How could these children at Kumon Math & Reading centers have endured being molested years? What happened?

    Parents need to understand that there really are weird people in the world and Kumon Math & Reading centers are no exception (some look like your mom’s best friend), and yes, they will molest and rape your kids. That will leave your children scarred for a lifetime. These Kumon franchisees and tutors are not just pedophiles but sociopaths and psychopaths. There’s probably some hormonal thing involved too…I’m sure.

    Parents need to understand what a pedophile sociopath is in order to protect their own kids. TOO MANY PARENTS ARE WAY TOO TRUSTING with their kids lives especially of the Cat-women who own and tutor at Kumon Math & Reading centers. They can’t imagine, that the Asian hags at Kumon Math & Reading (that act like their friends), woud molest and rape their kids. But they do. And that’s the reason it’s not a fluke that LOTS of kids were molested and victims of sex crimes at Kumon Math & Reading.

  8. Anon says:

    The problem with Kumon Math & Reading is that sex scandals have been perpetrated by the Kumon family themselves. So who can blame many of the franchisees for sex crimes?

    http://archives.starbulletin.com/2004/09/17/news/story2.html

    When my sister first opened a Kumon center in Atlanta the son of the founder of the Kumon Math & Reading company was involved in a major sex scandal with a franchisee Debra Tajiri, who owned two Kumon Math & Reading centers in Manoa and Kailua. She later claimed that Hiroshi Kumon had ruined her life after they had an affair and began asking him for money over a 21-month period beginning in March 2002. An employee of Debra Tajiri, the Kumon franchisee, later allegedly extorted $150,000 from a son of the founder of the Kumon learning method in exchange for 2,000 “compromising” photos. Debra Tajiri and one Sean Yonehiro, whom she hired to work in her centers as an assistant, were later arrested and faced a charge of sending international extortion communications which is punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Both were arrested after Yonehiro met with an FBI agent posing as Kumon’s attorney at Ala Moana Park and took from him a bag containing what he believed to be $150,000. At the time of the affair, Hiroshi Kumon was Director of Kumon Institute of Education in Japan, the parent company of Kumon North America, one of five regional headquarters worldwide responsible for operations in Canada, the United States and Mexico.

    An individual who went by the name “Max Lee” and who had been e-mailing Hiroshi Kumon while he was in Japan threatening to release compromising photos of Hiroshi Kumon if he didn’t pay for them. The complaint does not describe the photos but does say that Lee threatened to release the photos if Kumon also did not send more pornographic pictures of himself. More than five years after their affair, Debra Tajiri (the Kumon franchisee) allegedly began e-mailing Hiroshi Kumon asking for $500,000 to remodel her house, the complaint said. In those e-mails, she allegedly told Kumon that “you have taken a lifestyle from me,” and that she was considering filing a lawsuit. She also accused him of infecting her with a venereal disease and said that he should pay for her medical treatment. Kumon allegedly paid her more than $350,000. Later Debra Tajiri, the Kumon franchisee, allegedly continued asking Kumon for money, saying electricity at her home was shut off and that she could not pay contractors to finish work on her home. Debra Tajiri, the Kumon franchisee, e-mailed Hiroshi Kumon again, saying she needed $550,000 to secure a building contract. When he didn’t respond, she e-mailed him saying her life was “hell” and was over, and asking him why he had not sent money. Investigators learned that the e-mails sent by “Max Lee” came from an account belonging to Debra Tajiri and from her Nipo Street home.

    One of three vehicles spotted at Kumon franchisee Debra Tajiri’s residence was a white Ford pickup truck that was later seen at the Hawaii State Library — the first meeting Lee allegedly requested for Kumon’s representative to bring the money. A man was seen walking around the library on that day before leaving in the white truck registered to Yonehiro, who lists a Nipo Street address as his residence.

  9. Joy Chin says:

    Did the sexpot Debra really get venereal disease from the Kumon founder? What venereal disease did she get? Did the doctors test her?

  10. David Marjanović says:

    the sexpot Debra

    The what?

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