Government Makes a Terrible Parent
Government Makes a Terrible Parent
Written By Mae Arthur   |   10.27.23
Reading Time: 5 minutes

The story of Sage Blair is a worst-case scenario of epic proportions.

At fourteen years old, Sage, who is being raised by her grandparents, began questioning her gender identity. At school, she was encouraged to socially “transition” and began using a male name, male pronouns, and the boys’ restroom.

It was only after she was sexually harassed and threatened by male students in the restroom that Sage’s grandparents found out she was embracing a transgender identity.

From there, the story only gets worse.

Sage ran away and was sexually assaulted, then trafficked from Virginia to Washington, DC, and finally to Maryland, where she was repeatedly raped. The FBI eventually located her but when her grandparents came to pick her up, they were not permitted to see her.

Instead, they were required to appear in court as they were being investigated for child abuse over not affirming their Sage’s new gender identity.

While the case made its way through the courts, Sage was moved to a juvenile boys’ facility where, unsurprisingly, she was sexually assaulted again. More than two months later, Sage’s grandparents’ names were eventually cleared and they were granted custody.

But when a judge finally ruled that she should be released back to her family, the juvenile defense attorney (who it turns out had coerced Sage to lie about their “misgendering” her) immediately appealed, keeping her from going home once again.

Days later, Sage disappeared a second time. She was eventually located in Dallas, TX, where she had been taken by another predator who had placed her in a locked room, drugging, beating, raping, and exploiting her.

When Sage was finally reunited with her family, her grandmother took her to a residential behavioral health facility, where the staff persisted in affirming Sage’s male identity, even pushing her towards a double mastectomy, even though she no longer identified as a boy.

Nearly a year after the start of this horrifying story, Sage finally returned home to Virginia. Her grandmother says she is plagued by nightmares and panic attacks, and she is no longer able to attend school in person.

Her grandparents are loving and are using all means necessary to help her heal, but it goes without saying that the effects of her harrowing experience will be lifelong.

It would be difficult to script a more damning response to the transgender moment in which we currently find ourselves. It seems almost impossible that so many institutions and individuals could have failed a young girl and her family, but the new orthodoxy of radical self-expression has created the ideal environment for this kind of debacle to occur.

20 years ago, this would have been almost impossible.

With few exceptions, teachers then understood they were tasked with education, not indoctrination. They also recognized parents’ authority, looking to a student’s mom, dad, or legal guardian for the final say-so on what was best for their kids. But no more.

Now, radical political and union forces have invaded and empowered public school educators, deputizing them as surrogate parents always and only in support of progressive ideologies that are destructive to families, communities, and their students’ very lives.

It seems that the courts could have been relied on to bring some sanity and logic to Sage’s case, but we are no longer dealing with people whose priority is the truth and the law as written.

No, now we have activist, partisan judges, from our local municipalities up to the Supreme Court, who see their job as “enlightening” our founding documents.

“As sensibilities change, the law must bend and change as well,” they say.

And as is always the case, it is children who suffer the consequences of these half-thought-out agendas and policies.

What Sage and so many other kids like her need is stability and a clear sense of truth versus lies, right versus wrong. These boundaries are where kids find security and a place to thrive, whether they have deep struggles with their identity or not.

But the adults who are responsible for providing these guardrails must prize kids’ safety and innocence over their own desires and agendas, and sadly, many no longer do. To soothe their consciences, they’ve embraced two fatal lies: all freedom is inherently good and children are just small adults.

It appears Sage’s grandparents didn’t have a strong objection to Sage’s so-called “transgender identity,” so there’s no way to know whether they would have enabled her to pursue it.

What is clear is that they were robbed of the opportunity to parent her.

Through the public schools and the courts, the government interfered in the parent-child relationship, making possible a horrifying string of events and altering forever the course of a young girl’s life. It should never have happened.

Sadly, the circumstances that made this possible are not limited to Virginia and Maryland. This same abuse of authority threatens parents and kids in multiple states across the nation, with many examples cropping up here in Illinois.

For instance, the Illinois State Board of Education in 2020 issued guidance on “Supporting Transgender, Nonbinary, and Gender Nonconforming Students,” stating that

“schools are not required to seek parental consent to support transgender, nonbinary, and gender nonconforming students.”

This leaves the door wide open for teachers and counselors to not only run cover for students but also encourage them to doubt their gender and lie about it to their parents.

Illinois also no longer requires parental consent for hormonal birth control and the state’s parental notification of abortion law was repealed in 2021. Although hormone blockers and replacement treatments currently require parental consent, bills that aim to repeal these requirements have been introduced in Illinois.

Given the record of the Illinois legislature, it’s likely only a matter of time.

While these efforts to usurp parental authority are widespread, there is a growing movement across the nation to push back. Especially after the COVID lockdowns gave parents a glimpse into what their kids were being taught in public schools, it seems a sleeping giant has been awakened.

Illinois is no exception.

In response to the alarming increase in governmental interference in parent-child relationships in Illinois, the Parents Matter Coalition–which includes Illinois Family Institute–was formed to bring parents’ rights to the ballot in the November 2024 election. Between now and April of 2024, the group is gathering signatures on a Petition for Submission to place a “Right to Parent” question before voters, and we need your help to get to 500,000 signatures!

The text of the “Advisory Question of Public Policy on the Right to Parent” states:

Shall the written consent from a minor’s parent or guardian be required before any entity, person, clinic or school can provide a minor (under the age of 18 years) any non-emergency medical procedure, medication, pharmaceutical, or any gender modification procedure, gender identification counseling or gender therapy?

If the effort reaches the required number of signatures, this question will appear before all Illinois voters on Election Day in 2024.

Provided we can get the question placed on the ballot (which is where you come in) there can hardly be any doubt that the vast majority of parents all over the state will answer a resounding “YES.”

Members of our government and its proxies believe they have the moral high ground on these issues, but they are fatally wrong.

More and more parents are standing up and saying “I don’t co-parent with the government,” and this ballot initiative is a great way to take that message into the halls of power.

Our kids are “a heritage from the Lord,” and we are privileged to “train [them] up in the way they should go.”

No one, not even the government, has the right to invade that sacred, God-ordained relationship!

Take ACTION:  Join the Parents Matter Coalition by becoming an official petition circulator. Simply download the instructions and the petition forms linked below.


To become a circulator, you must be 18 years of age by the next General Election, which is November 5, 2024.

Visit the Parents Matter Coalition website today to learn about how to get involved.

Find a way to get involved today and raise your voice to protect our kids!

Mae Arthur
Mae is a freelance writer and editor, as well as a former staff member at a Washington, D.C. conservative policy group. An Illinois native, she now lives in south-central Pennsylvania with her husband and two children....
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