Phyllis has always loved the idea of family and caring for children. In fact she has said many times she wished that our children could have stayed young.
She enjoyed teaching them games, telling them stories, making up rhymes, joking with them and going on camping trips.
She liked playing in the floor and rolling around with our kids and playing in the yard. She liked packing their lunches, seeing them off to school and especially meeting them at the door when they returned home. Phyllis made everyday a special day.
I remember our conversations before we were married. Contrary to emerging feminist thought of the early 1960’s, Phyllis wanted a family. Her highest goal was to be mother and wife.Not only did she teach values and morals, she taught them to our children in ways that made sense to kids. By using songs and stories she taught that it was wrong steal, lie, cheat and to pick on kids who were different. My wife was especially vocal about taking prayer out of school and teaching such things as sex education. When our kids were in grade school, education administrators stopped listening to parents in matters such as these.
On one occasion in 1967, Phyllis attended an open forum on curriculum content for the upcoming school year. Tulsa Public School administrators/teachers hosted the event, ostensibility to provide input to the curriculum.However, that was not the true agenda. After a short time it was clear that the real reason for the meeting was to convince parents that it was appropriate for teachers and administrators to teach religious neutral morality, situation ethics, and age appropriate sex education.
Essentially, the administrators /teachers approach to sex education was clinical without boundaries of moral judgements. Further, the classroom was not a place for religious opinions of what is right or wrong rather it was the situation that determined ethical choices.
Near the end of the meeting the moderator opened the forum for questions and comments. It was clear that most parents objected to the educators approach to these subjects. But the host was undeterred.
When Phyllis was recognized, she spoke her mind about sex eduction and situational ethics, the moderator interrupted her and asked Phyllis whose morals should be taught. Without a pause, Phyllis responded “certainly not yours”. The meeting was over.