NETHERLANDS - World’s Happiest Teenagers

Arno Froese

In report after report, the Netherlands tops OECD countries for high life satisfaction among its young people.

It contrasts starkly with the picture in countries like Britain, where depression and anxiety are on the rise among teenagers, and the US, where the number of young people taking their own lives has risen sharply.

So why is this flat, damp country of 17 million people with its history of Calvinism and colonialism so good at giving young people an optimistic outlook?

“I think Dutch children have generally positive interactions in all their social surroundings,” says Dr. Simone De Roos, a researcher. “They have a supportive environment at home, with friends and also at school. Dutch parents give a lot of support and have mild control. There’s an egalitarian climate, teachers are not authoritarian but accept the feelings of pupils, and pupils trust teachers.”

The last Health Behavior in School-aged Children (HBSC) study, comparing children of 11, 13 and 15, showed a happy Dutch youth. When asked where they would be on “Cantril’s ladder”—with the worst possible life for them on 0 and their best at 10, about 94% of Dutch boys said six or above. Dutch girls were slightly lower, ranging from 84% to 92%.

“If you look across Europe, the Dutch and the Danes are the most lenient and focus more on developing autonomy than giving priority to obedience—and that fits the society,” says Prof. Ruut Veenhoven. “Children are more free to do what they want, and in doing what they want, develop an idea of what they really like and social skills. A happy boy may be sometimes not a very good boy.”

Despite the country’s reputation for cannabis smoking, the Trimbos Institute reports a downward trend for using alcohol and drugs and smoking in Dutch children aged 12 to 16. Such activities are described by HBSC experts as “risk behaviors” that impact happiness.

-www.theguardian.com, 17 June 2018

Arno's commentary

This report is noteworthy, because it follows an anti-Biblical philosophy when it comes to children, education and discipline. Yet the report card is quite amazing. More than 11% of the population is foreign-born, with about 5% Muslim. And this liberal country is secure with a low crime rate. NationMaster.com lists the USA as eight times more dangerous than the Netherlands when it comes to violent crime and murder rates. Capital punishment was outlawed long ago, and it was the first country in the world to approve same-sex marriage. The gross national product per capita stands at $53,600, and life expectancy is 81.4 years.

Thus, the question: why is such a liberal country so successful? Answer: the Netherlands is quick to adopt change. In other words, “Go with the flow,” meaning a modern, liberal education. Thus, they are building a society where peace, prosperity, and security are guaranteed to all people. That will lead to global government under the leadership of Satan’s masterpiece: the Antichrist.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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