Saturday, April 21, 2007

School district promoting an agenda

There was an editorial today in the Scottsdale section of the Arizona Republic titled “School district promoting an agenda. The writer, a mother of two high school aged daughters, asks, “What on earth has happened with the Scottsdale school system?”

What prompted this mom to ask this question? Apparently the school handed out a "school climate survey," asking students their sexual orientation without getting parent’s permission, which for this mom was completely out-of-line. Now I do have to wonder how this high school honestly thought they could get away with this without at least one parent going into a homophobic frenzy or as this mom did, writing a classic editorial that would make the Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, James Dobson crowd beam with pride, it was chock full of so many of their favorite homophobic buzz words and scare tactics.

But I guess the straw that broke this offended mother’s back was when the school started making announcements, showing staff support, and having discussions in class regarding the "Day of Silence", an event she claims is organized by homosexual activists that she believes promote the gay agenda to innocent, unsuspecting children.

She continues her diatribe:

This has been extremely disruptive to my children's learning and hostile to their freedom of religious beliefs. Daily, they experience anti-Christian bigotry.

Children should not be pressured to approve of homosexual, bisexual, transsexual, cross-dressing or (to be politically correct) "transgender" behavior. I don't want anybody discussing their sexual preferences, orientation or behavior with my daughters.

All of our children have been bullied for various reasons. If the agenda is about keeping LGBT's from being bullied, in reality, my children are being angrily bullied from that same group for not agreeing with them. They also feel pressure from teachers and administration.

Wow --- my head spins with all the Dobson-speak! And I was completely unaware of how dangerous it is to be Christian in a public school in Scottsdale Arizona these days. Hmmm, that must be a fairly recent turn of events since I don’t recall any of my children coming home with black eyes for being Catholic (my children were all part of the Scottsdale school system up until up until 3 years ago).

But she’s not done. She successfully uses the James Dobson talking points for turning the tables and convincing everyone that it is actually her daughters that are the victims, now it’s time for step 2, a breathless tirade of scare tactics and dire consequences should our children actually accept, tolerate, or feel sympathy for anyone who is not just like them (I guess she hasn’t watched TV lately because maybe she’d better understand what true dire consequences are when kids are bullied or made to feel different and out of the mainstream):

I agree that some incidents of bullying do occur, as they do for all students. But to quote from the Web site, "this event is an overwhelming exaggeration in an effort to manipulate our kids' natural sympathies. The result, ironically, is that youth develop favorable views about a controversial, high-risk behavior. The Day of Silence is a one-sided campaign to manipulate acceptance of homosexuality by every student. Nationwide, parents are fed up with the political hijacking of their kids' classrooms."

I vehemently oppose these tactics of homosexual activism. I especially oppose the support or at least perceived approval my children are receiving from adults working within our school system who should be neutral.

Well OK then, this poor victimized mother of two victimized children got her say, now it is this seething mom’s turn.

My online comment to her barely disguised homophobic screed:

It is unbelievable to me, the mother of a gay child, how deftly Holly Garcia turns her daughters into the victims over something as peaceful as "The Day of Silence". I just do not know where to begin with her diatribe. As a mother who knows only too well the agonies of watching her own son's painful journey from denial to self acceptance, I can tell Mrs. Garcia that he spent every waking moment of his high school years consumed with an "agenda" of trying to act, think, look, and BE heterosexual. I know first hand the pain my child was experiencing because I watched helplessly as he suffered and struggled "alone" to be something he could never be. He lost those precious years forever because he was trying to be that perfect little heterosexual boy that Holly Garcia's "Christian" faith demands he be. I cannot describe how offensive and painful Holly Garcia's words are to people who know firsthand the heartbreak children experience when they don't fit perfectly into people like Mrs. Garcia's very narrow view of normal. It's devastating - not only for the child, but for the helpless family and friends that love that child.

And I don't even know where to begin with the ignorance Mrs. Garcia exhibits in this editorial. She has definitely been schooled well in the Pat Robertson/Jerry Falwell/James Dobson school of homophobia. Oh if only homosexuality were a "behavior" as Mrs. Garcia so cunningly and Falwell-esque-ly refers to it! How much easier our family's life would have been. Then we could have just sent our little boy to a therapist who could have helped him unlearn that nasty little "behavior" that Mrs. Garcia finds so objectionable. But alas, there is no way to change what God has made and to try would be an affront to Him. God does not make trash. My son is just as God intended him to be.

Mrs. Garcia states that The Day of Silence "has been extremely disruptive to [her] children's learning and hostile to their freedom of religious beliefs." She further goes on to say that her daughters "experience anti-Christian bigotry" on a daily basis. If this is true, then my heart goes out to her. My family knows first hand the pain of daily discrimination and hostility and we believe no one should have to experience that. Her daughters no more deserve to be victims of bigotry than does my son. But it's sad that in Mrs. Garcia's eyes her daughters are victims because some students choose not to speak for a day, but children who are bullied with hateful words and physical violence are simply people who "choose" their sexual orientation. So my question for Mrs. Garcia is this, why does she believe that those who choose to be Christian should not be discriminated against for their choice, but those who "choose" to be gay are fair game?



Jarred said...

Well said!

Yet another person tries to drum up as much fear as they can by mentioning the dreaded "homosexual agenda." Personally, I don't see what's so frightening about encouraging all people to be true to themselves regardless of their sexual orientation.

Well, that's not true. I do know what's frightening about it to some people. I just think it's truly sad.

Steve F. said...

Mrs. Garcia states that The Day of Silence "has been extremely disruptive to [her] children's learning and hostile to their freedom of religious beliefs."

I haven't yet figured out how silence - the absence of confrontation - is disruptive or hostile to anything.

How does silence affect anyone's religious beliefs, in any way other than positively? If us gay boys are silent, doesn't that give you much more room to preach, Dr. Dobson?

Or are you and your ilk afraid that if you see all the dykes and fags and "friends of the family" claiming to be "openly silent," that folks just might figure out that the religious right does not have a corner on society?

Even that wouldn't affect your rights or freedoms. But it would shoot big damn holes in your self-image as the dominant force in the world today. And we sure as hell can't have that, now CAN we?

Dr. James Dobson - manly man of God - afraid of the queers. Pat Robertson, afraid of what gays and lesbians might "inject" into their churches.

Horrific concepts like love, and acceptance, and tolerance. Oh, the horrors....