Education, Midwifery and Miriam

From today’s snatches of conversation. Notes.

Waldorf schools up until recently have had up to 2/3 state funding. This has now been cut to 1/2 and looks likely to be further eroded, despite the fact that 2 government ministers of education send their children to the Steiner School! It seems that the essential humanistic and spiritual values do not rate high on the list of priorities in the present political soil.

Home birth is still just about legal, but if, once chosen, and hospital admission and intervention should be necessary, you can expect to be psychologically AND physically mistreated/ bullied. A midwife who advocated home birth and supported women in their home births was recently jailed thanks to petitioning from Doctors threatened by this practice, and after much international protest she has been released but is under house arrest. I quote from a letter of protest… “After the 72 hours in detention, she was taken before a closed criminal court and charged with “reckless endangerment committed in the line of duty” and remanded in custody without bail for a further 30 days. It took 28 days before Agnes was allowed to see just 2 members of her family (her mother and eldest son) for one hour (Agnes has four children). She has been subject to strip searches after visits from her lawyer, is confined to her cell 23 hours a day, has been refused access to the library and medicines, is permitted 10 minutes of phone call time weekly. When Agnes subsequently appeared before a public court, for separate criminal charges related to other birth cases, she was chained to a policeman, handcuffed and leg shackled so tightly that she had a 10cm bleeding wound on her leg. ”
I was dismayed to hear of such appalling treatment. This in the 21st century. Whilst she was conveniently under lock and key, new laws have been designed to give women the ‘choice’ regarding home birth: however these are so laced with conditions as to make it nearly impossible to fulfill them. “Down with choice” is the message.

In the warmth of the home of Betti’s art therapist, the lovely daughter Miriam was talking about the resignation and despondancy of the Hungarian attitude and lack of concern for each other. “we have to believe that it can be different. If I do different, then others will. We must keep faith”. We talked about her name. The one in the bible who saved Moses. I said that perhaps it was her destiny to be the one who would hold safe a precious jewel of hope for the Hungarian people. I was so touched by her charisma and loyalty to human values. She is studying recreation. What is recreation? Something that will improve your moral and overall well being. An interesting philosophical and moral question “which is why I study this”

And finally Barbara’s long view, of an 83 year old Hungarian woman who has spent most of her life in Sweden, having been exiled to safety during the war. She is not happy with what Hungary has come to. Her father was Szende.

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