Skip to comments.Bill O'Reilly still doesn't get it
Posted on 02/14/2004 1:04:29 PM PST by scripter
In the past several days, the media have descended on Massachusetts like a flock of vultures on a wounded prey. The scenes inside and outside the Statehouse are described by many as "surreal." With the thousands of people and hundreds of cameras on Beacon Hill, the legislators say they have never seen or experienced anything like this before.
The hoopla, of course, is about "gay" marriage.
One of the greatest battles for America's future right now is being waged in Massachusetts an outcome that will affect and possibly change our entire nation forever. Simply put, this battle is about one thing: do we or don't we, as a nation, embrace and accept the practice of homosexuality in America?
To observe the national media's biased reporting on this issue is disheartening, to say the least.
My wife, Irene, and I both led teams at pro-marriage rallies this past weekend in Hartford, Conn., and Boston, Mass. We were there. Yet the media's reporting was undoubtedly biased beyond belief. You would think they were at a different rally than we were. With upwards of 6,000 people rallying in support of marriage between a man and a woman in Connecticut and literally only a handful of homosexual protesters, the media gave all of the air time to the "gay" activists and their rally! The same angle was sadly taken in Massachusetts.
Watching the cable news programs and their reporting on America's homosexual dilemma isn't any better. It just shows how biased and one-sided the media really are.
Bill O'Reilly, host of "The O'Reilly Factor" on the Fox News Channel, on Feb. 11 featured Kevin Jennings, the executive director of GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network. Kevin discussed GLSEN's pro-homosexual curriculum being marketed to public schools all across America under the guise of "tolerance."
GLSEN's material instructs teachers how to teach America's children that "gay is OK." This material falsely equates homosexuality with heterosexuality teaching we need to accept and embrace everyone for who they "really" are. Bill O'Reilly tragically bit the bait and once again displayed his personal bias, stating he believes all Americans should "pursue happiness."
But what does Bill O'Reilly's think "pursuing happiness" includes?
O'Reilly, watched heavily by conservatives and Christians alike, shocked America in September 2002 when he publicly announced his support of homosexual special rights in the nation's largest homosexual publication, the Advocate. His interview, one he probably wishes would just go away, caused a lot of controversy and dissent among his viewers.
To many, O'Reilly has sold out.
What Bill needs to realize is that he and others in the media are sending a very bad message to America and our children. Does O'Reilly actually think two men engaging in anal intercourse is something America needs to embrace, accepting this behavior in the homosexuals' "pursuit of happiness"?
Does Mr. O'Reilly actually believe a sexual, sadistic act by two lesbians or "gay" men known as "fisting" should be taught to America's teens? This is exactly what was taught during a workshop his guest's organization GLSEN co-sponsored and participated in.
The event, called "Teach Out," took place in March of 2000 in Massachusetts. Drawing national headlines and outrage, the event became known as "Fistgate."
GLSEN also provides a suggested reading list of books to America's youth many of them containing blatant, pornographic stories of young boys who engage in oral sex and anal intercourse with older boys, as well as lesbian sex between young girls. Most parents are in the dark on the explicit, graphic homosexual content their children are reading. Linda Harvey, executive director of Mission: America has documented several of these and other troubling resources in great detail.
GLSEN is also responsible for encouraging GSA's or gay-straight alliances "gay" clubs nearly 2,000 of them in schools across America. These clubs meet and encourage the students in their homosexual lifestyles some even encouraging homosexual experimentation. I personally stopped one of these GSA's in Connecticut two years ago from taking their teenage club members on a "field trip" to Provincetown, Mass. one of the largest homosexual subcultures in the Northeast.
Is this the message that Bill O'Reilly wants to send to America? Are these books he wants America's children to read? Is this what Bill O'Reilly wants to have his child taught? Are these the kind of clubs he wants America's youth to join? Does Bill O'Reilly look forward to the day when his child will walk down the aisle to be married till "death do us part" with his child's homosexual lover?
Bill O'Reilly, who fervently advocates for children by fighting the demeaning messages of Ludicrous, Janet Jackson, Snoop Doggy Dog, Little Kim and others, is being hypocritical and doing a great disservice to America by using his celebrity to endorse the homosexual lifestyle. Homosexuality is not only harmful to children and to society, but has also proven deadly for many.
O'Reilly, who professes the Catholic faith, knows his views are in direct rebellion with the Catholic church's teaching on homosexuality.
Father Harvey, a Catholic priest from New York who heads Courage, a Catholic ministry to those who want to overcome their unwanted same-sex attractions, says people such as O'Reilly are in grave error and have placed themselves "above the church."
The Vatican itself issued a statement months ago addressing politicians and public figures stating no professing Catholic could nor should support the homosexual lifestyle, same-sex unions or "gay" adoption. Yet even with stern warnings from Rome itself O'Reilly's heart remains hardened.
Bill O'Reilly just doesn't seem to get it. He's right on so many issues, but on homosexuality he's dead wrong. As I've said time and time again, people such as Bill O'Reilly have fallen for the "Gay Spin Zone." Their reasoning is based on emotion, not on logic. It's based on "tolerance," not truth. It's based on believing a misinformation campaign being waged by "gay" activists and the media are the major conduit.
Tragically, the message Bill O'Reilly is sending to America is the wrong one.
Bill O'Reilly has had many opportunities to hear the truth about the homosexual lifestyle from many of his guests, including when I appeared on his show back in September of 2002.
Yet he didn't want to listen. He had other motives in mind. Yet as a former homosexual, I encourage Bill O'Reilly to listen and to examine the truth to put aside his presuppositions and not to go by his emotions. Lives are at stake here including America's children.
Those such as myself who take a public, principled stand against the embracing and promotion of homosexuality in America do so for a reason. We know the truths and facts about the homosexual lifestyle. I've been there personally and experienced it firsthand.
Our message is not one of hate, but hope. It is not one of discrimination, but of deliverance. A message that I perceived years ago as one of bigotry brought me a new beginning. This same wonderful hope awaits every homosexual man and woman a chance to become the real men and women they were created to be.
As the issue of homosexuality continues to be at the forefront in America, the media including Bill O'Reilly have to be held to higher standards and called to report accurately, fairly and without bias.
Fox News claims to be fair and balanced. Then let America hear the truth, Mr.O'Reilly, about homosexuality. Respectfully, do as you say "We report, you decide."
This movement to queer the public schools, as activists put it, originated with a shift in the elite understanding of homosexuality. During the eighties, when gay activism first became a major cultural force, homosexual leaders launched a campaign that mirrored the civil rights movement. To claim their rights, homosexuals argued (without scientific evidence) that their orientation was a genetic inheritance, like race, and thus deserved the same kind of civil protections the nation had guaranteed to blacks. An inborn, unchangeable fact, after all, could not be subject to moral disapproval. There ensued a successful effort to normalize homosexuality throughout the culture, including a strong push for homosexual marriage, gays in the military, and other signs of civic equality...
Underlying this militant stance was a radical new academic ideology called queer theory. A mixture of the neo-Freudianism of counterculture gurus Norman O. Brown and Herbert Marcuse and French deconstruction, queer theory takes to its extreme limit the idea that all sexual difference and behavior is a product of social conditioning, not nature. It is, in their jargon, socially constructed. For the queer theorist, all unambiguous and permanent notions of a natural sexual or gender identity are coercive impositions on our individual autonomyour freedom to reinvent our sexual selves whenever we like. Sexuality is androgynous, fluid, polymorphousand therefore a laudably subversive and even revolutionary force...
It would be tempting to dismiss queer theory as just another intellectual fad, with little influence beyond the campus, if not for gay activists aggressive effort to introduce the theorys radical view of sexuality into the public schools. Leading the effort is the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Educational Network (GLSEN, pronounced glisten), an advocacy group founded a decade ago to promote homosexual issues in the public schools. It now boasts 85 chapters, four regional offices, and some 1,700 student clubs, called gay/straight alliances, that it has helped form in schools across the country.
GLSEN often presents itself as a civil rights organization, saying that it is only after tolerance and understanding for a victim group. Sometimes, therefore, it still speaks the old gay-rights language of unchangeable homosexual identity and orientation. But it is, in fact, a radical organization that has clearly embraced the queer-theory worldview. It seeks to transform the culture and instruction of every public school, so that children will learn to equate heterosexismthe favoring of heterosexuality as normalwith other evils like racism and sexism and will grow up pondering their sexual orientation and the fluidity of their sexual identity.
That GLSEN embraces queer theory is clear from the addition of transgendered students to the gays and lesbians the group claims to represent. By definition, the transgendered are those who choose to change their gender identity by demeanor, dress, hormones, or surgery. Nothing could be more profoundly opposed to the notion of a natural sexual identity. Consider as evidence of queer theorys influence, too, the GLSEN teachers manual that says that middle-schoolers should have the freedom to explore [their] sexual orientation and find [their] own unique expression of lesbian, bisexual, gay, straight, or any combination of these. What is this but Michael Warners appeal to pansexual experimentation?
One of the major goals of GLSEN and similar groups is to reform public school curricula and teaching so that Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgenderor LGBTthemes are always central and always presented in the approved light. GLSEN holds regular conferences for educators and activists with workshops bearing titles such as Girls Will Be Boys and Boys Will Be Girls: Creating a Safe, Supportive School Environment for Trans, Intersex, Gender Variant and Gender Questioning Youth and Developing and Implementing a Transgender Inclusive Curriculum. Every course in every public school should focus on LGBT issues, GLSEN believes. A workshop at GLSENs annual conference in Chicago in 2000 complained that most LGBT curricula are in English, history and health and sought ways of introducing its agenda into math and science classes, as well. (As an example of how to queer geometry, GLSEN recommends using gay symbols such as the pink triangle to study shapes.)
Nor is it ever too early to begin stamping out heterosexism. A 2002 GLSEN conference in Boston held a seminar on Gender in the Early Childhood Classroom that examined ways of setting the tone for nontraditional gender role play for preschoolers. To help get the LGBT message across to younger children, teachers can turn to an array of educational products, many of them available from GLSEN. Early readers include One Dad, Two Dads, Brown Dad, Blue Dads; King and King; and Ashas Mums.
As for teaching aids, a 1999 book, Queering Elementary Education, with a foreword by GLSEN executive director Kevin Jennings, offers essays on Locating a Place for Gay and Lesbian Themes in Elementary Reading, Writing and Talking and How to Make Boys and Girls in the Classroomthe scare quotes showing the queer theorists ever present belief that categorizing gender is a political act.
For comprehensiveness, nothing beats a GLSEN-recommended resource manual distributed to all K12 public schools in Saint Paul and Minneapolis. The manual presents an educational universe that filters everything through an LGBT lens. Lesson ideas include role playing exercises to counter harassment, where students pretend, say, to be bisexual and hear hurtful words cast at them; testing students to see where their attitudes lie toward sexual difference (mere tolerance is unacceptable; much better is admiration and, best of all, nurturance); getting students to take a Sexual Orientation Quiz; and having heterosexual students learn 37 ways that heterosexuals are privileged in society. In turn, principals should make an ongoing PA announcementonce a week, the manual saystelling students about confidential support programs for LGBT students.
Teachers, the manual suggests, should demand that public school students memorize the approved meanings of important LGBT words and terms, from bigenderist to exotophobia. Sometimes, these approved meanings require Orwellian redefinitions: Family: Two or more persons who share resources, share responsibility for decisions, share values and goals, and have commitments to one another over a period of time . . . regardless of blood, or adoption, or marriage.
Two videos come particularly highly rated by gay activists and educators as tools for making primary school queer-friendly. Both films strive to present homosexuality in a favorable light, without saying what it actually is. Its Elementary, intended for parents, educators, and policymakers, shows how classroom teachers can lead kindergartners through carefully circumscribed discussions of the evils of prejudice, portrayed as visited to an unusual degree on gays and lesbians. In Thats a Family, designed for classroom use, children speak directly into the camera, explaining to other kids how having gay and lesbian parents is no different from, for example, having parents of different national backgrounds.
GLSEN even provides lesson plans for the promotion of cross-dressing in elementary school classes. A school resource book containing such lesson plans, Cootie Shots: Theatrical Inoculations Against Bigotry for Kids, Parents, and Teachers, has already been used in second-grade classrooms in California. A childrens play in the book features a little boy singing of the exhilaration of striding about In Mommys High Heels, in angry defiance of the criticism of his intolerant peers:
They are the swine, I am the pearl. . . .
Theyll be beheaded when Im queen!
When I rule the world! When I rule the world!
When I rule the world in my mommys high heels!
Some of the LGBT-friendly curricular material aimed at older children is quite sexually explicit. The GLSEN-recommended reading list for grades 712 is dominated by such material, depicting the queer sexuality spectrum. In Your Face: Stories from the Lives of Queer Youth features a 17-year-old who writes, I identify as bisexual and have since I was about six or seven. . . . I sort of experimented when I was young. Another GLSEN recommendation, Revolutionary Voices: A Multicultural Queer Youth Anthology, has a 16-year-old contributor who explains, My sexuality is as fluid, indefinable and ever-changing as the north flowing river.
Some of the most explicit homosexual material has shown up in classrooms. An Ohio teacher encouraged her freshman students to read Entries From a Hot Pink Notebook, a teen coming-out story that includes a graphic depiction of sex between two 14-year-old boys. In Newton, Massachusetts, a public school teacher assigned his 15-year-old students The Perks of Being a Wallflower, a farrago of sexual confusion, featuring an episode of bestiality as one of its highlights. Such books represent a growth industry for publishers, including mainstream firms.
As part of its effort to make the public schools into an arena of homosexual and transgender advocacy, GLSEN works assiduously to build a wide network of student organizers. It looks for recruits as young as 14, who in turn are to bring on board other students to form gay/straight alliances or other homosexual-themed student clubs at their schools. Glancing over the biographies of 2002s student organizers reveals a uniform faith among them that experimenting with a range of homosexual behaviors serves the cause of civil rights.
The behavior in question involves some practices that the Marquis de Sade would welcome. A GLSEN-sponsored, taxpayer-funded teach out for activists, educators, and students to brainstorm ways of creating schools and communities that are truly inclusive and safe, held at Tufts University a while back, is a case in point. The daylong conference, with Massachusetts Department of Education and other state employees as workshop leaders and drawing many high school students and teachers (who received professional development credits for attending), featured a youth only, ages 1421 session that offered a lesson in fistingthe potentially dangerous act, called by some the first new sexual invention in 1,000 years, of inserting ones fist into a partners anus or vagina.
Thanks to two members of the local Parents Rights Coalition, who secretly taped the session, we know that the fisting lesson did not arouse universal enthusiasm among the teens present. A boy asks why anyone would want to do such a thing. Other teens reportedly winced. But the self-identified gay and lesbian state employees turned aside doubts. Onea womanexplained that, though fisting often gets a really bad rap, it usually isnt about the painnot that were putting that down. Rather, she assured, it is an experience of letting somebody into your body that you want to be close and intimate with.
And so the workshop proceeded, marketing the polymorphously perverse to the sexually naive and emotionally immature. The etiquette of swallowing versus spitting after oral sex came up, as did the question of whether a tongue ring makes oral sex more pleasurable. Other topics included: how to use dildos, the mechanics of lesbian sexual gratification, and whether celery makes semen taste sweeter. The workshop leaders were sophisticated, yet breezy and colloquial, using street language and referring quite openly to their own sexual experiencesa Department of Public Health worker making his homosexual promiscuity obvious. The workshop initiated adolescents into a forbidden world that their parents likely knew nothing about.
In the winter of 2001, Tufts hosted another GLSEN-sponsored conference, entitled Creating SafetyTeaching Respect. This time, most of the 650 people present were teenagers, rounded up by gay activists or coming on their own to receive instruction in queer sexuality. Planned Parenthood representatives handed out special kits, containing latex gloves and lubricants, for safe fisting.
GLSEN and other activist homosexual groups have effectively used safe school campaigns to further their agenda. The federal Safe and Drug-Free Schools ProgramTitle IV of the Elementary and Secondary Education Actprovides millions of dollars to state education departments to combat drugs and violence in the public schools. Using some of these funds, gay activists have helped design and promote public school tolerance programs. One of the mildest of such programs, Healing the Hate, released in 1997 under Department of Justice sposorship, implicitly likens disapproval of homosexual behavior with the prejudices that in the past have led to lynchings, church burnings, and the Holocaust. Gay groups contenddubiouslythat such programs are necessary because homosexual students must endure bullying and hatred every day in schools across the country.
GLSEN is quite explicit about using the safety issue to silence opponents. As GLSEN chief Kevin Jennings puts it, We knew that, confronted with the real-life stories of youth who had suffered from homophobia, our opponents would automatically be on the defensive. . . . This allowed us to set the terms of the debate.
At the urging of gay/straight alliances, schools across the U.S. have also created safe rooms for homosexual or sexually confused students, as if they might not be safe from hate and intolerance elsewhere in the school. In these rooms, identified by inverted pink triangles, students can discuss same-sex attraction or anxiety about sexual orientation with teachers or counselors, who promise a nonjudgmental and sympathetic hearing. Students who drop by for private discussion about their sexual confusion will often be referredwithout parental knowledgeto local chapters of gay and lesbian organizations. If queer theorists are correct that homosexuality is a free choice, then parents might be forgiven for thinking such advocacy a kind of recruitment.
Without doubt, most parents would look at the subversive agenda on offer at GLSEN conferences and in LGBT-friendly curricula and find it bizarre and offensive. What sense, they might ask, does it make to queer math or science or other classeswhatever that might meanwhen so many public schools fail even to produce minimally literate and numerate graduates?
Especially when all the evidence suggests that the incidence of self-labeled homosexuality and bisexuality in the population is in fact minusculejust 1.4 percent of female subjects and 2.8 percent of male subjects, according to one of the largest and most scientific surveys by the National Opinion Research Center. Even Kinsey, with a very distorted sample population of volunteers, prison inmates (including sex offenders), and deliberately solicited homosexual respondents, only came up with a 4 percent figure for exclusive homosexual behavior, still far below the 10 percent frequently cited by homosexual activists. Should we revolutionize the schools for such a tiny minority?
Even more to the point, how many parents, even those not just tolerant of homosexuality but actively sympathetic toward homosexual rights, would really want their teenage children to be seeking out a unique expression of sexuality (let alone with their schools help) or learning how to fist? How many would want their kindergartnersjust figuring out their identities and desperately needing clear-cut categories like boy and girl to make sense of themto engage in non-traditional role play, so that they grow up with warm feelings about transgendered people? Or their elementary school boys and girls exposed to sexual themes that they arent old enough to understand and that are likely to fill them with anxiety? Parents might well brush off an old-fashioned word and describe it all as, well . . . perverse.
As for bullying, the real problem is not anti-gay prejudice but the overall breakdown of school discipline. No child should have to put up with verbal or physical intimidation at school. Making schools safer, however, does not require importing a broader LGBT agenda that offends the values of many students and parents.
Nevertheless, though many parents arent aware of it yet, the agenda has moved far beyond the wishful thinking of activists. The keynote speaker at GLSENs 2000 conference was Robert Chase, president of the 2.7 million-member National Education Association, the nations biggest, most powerful teachers union. The program booklet for the event featured greetings not only from Chase but from then-president Clinton, Chicago mayor Richard Daley, and the head of the American Federation of Teachers, the second-biggest U.S. teachers union. The celebratory notes expressed the kind of praise once reserved for groups like the Boy Scouts. A long list of well-known organizations has backed LGBT programs in the classroom, including the American Psychiatric Association, the American Library Association, and the National Association of Social Workers.
No organization has been more steadfast in its support of GLSEN than the NEA. During the NEAs annual convention in July 2001, many observers expected the teachers union to pass an official resolution incorporating GLSENs sweeping educational goals into K12 curricula nationwide. As it turns out, the NEA, clearly trying to minimize public awareness of an unprecedented infringement on parental prerogatives, tabled the resolution and announced a task force to study how best to approach LGBT issues in the schools. But in February 2002, the NEA board of directors approved the task forces reporta pure emanation of the GLSEN worldview, as is clear both from its numerous citations of GLSEN documents in the footnotes and from its recommendations.
Following the task forces lead, the NEA will now struggle to expunge heterosexism from the consciousness of children in the classroom. The union has encouraged schools to integrate LGBT themes into curricula, instructional material, and programs; to emphasize the legitimacy of different family structures, including domestic partner arrangements; and to offer counseling services for students struggling with their sexual/gender orientation. Small wonder that GLSEN greeted the NEA task forces report, and its endorsement by the union, with hosannas. These powerful new recommendations signal that help is on the way for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students and staff who experience day-to-day abuse in Americas schools, enthused GLSEN head Jennings.
The queering of the public schools has perhaps advanced furthest in California, where a new state law requires public schools to teach all K12 students (and K means five-year-olds) to appreciate various sexual orientations. What the new law might mean in practice, warned a state assemblyman, was on display at Santa Rosa High School, where invited homosexual activists talked about using cellophane during group sex and said that clear is best because you can see what you want to lick, or at Hale Middle School in Los Angeles, where during an AIDS education course, 12-year-olds were subjected to graphic descriptions of anal sex and tips on how to dispose of used condoms so parents dont find out. As the assemblyman noted, sex ed courses throughout California public schools, influenced heavily by national sex education advocates SEICUS and Planned Parenthood, have already enthusiastically endorsed the GLSEN worldview.
But California is only the cutting edge: efforts to queer the schools are under way in many other locales, from Massachusetts to Oregon. The co-chair of the Massachusetts Governors Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth, for example, informs the Boston Globe that teachers across that state are increasingly integrating LGBT themes into lessonsdiscussing the sexual orientation of authors as an interpretive tool in literature classes, she says, or comparing gay and bisexual with straight student mental health data in order to study percentages. After a ferocious battle, the Broward School Board in Florida recently voted to rely on GLSEN to train teachers in LGBT sensitivity. In Gresham, Oregon, in early 2002, school officials at Centennial High School brought in gay and lesbian speakers in English, drama, and health classes during the schools annual diversity week, neither telling students about it beforehand nor letting them opt out of the classes if they wanted. Parental anger forced school officials to issue a public apology.
GLSEN constantly emphasizes the need for tolerance for homosexuality, bisexuality, and transgenderism, but if someone bucks the LGBT party line in a school that follows it, watch out. Consider the experience of Elliott Chambers, formerly a student at Woodbury High School in a suburb of Saint Paul, Minnesota. Woodbury High had posted pink triangles on 48 of its 60-odd classrooms and offices (what made the other rooms unsafe isnt clear). Belonging to a conservative family, Chambers decided one day to express his values and wore to school a sweatshirt with the words STRAIGHT PRIDE emblazoned across the front and an image of a man and woman holding hands on the back.
Parents or other concerned citizens who complain about any aspect of the queering of public education can face withering attacks, not just from gay activists but from cultural elites in general. When the two members of the Parents Rights Coalition released their tape of the GLSEN-sponsored fisting workshop to the public, to take one typical example, the Boston Globe didnt condemn the use of public funds and state employees to instruct schoolchildren in an arcane and dangerous sexual practice; instead, it denounced the whistleblowers as fomenters of intolerance.
School districts that refuse to go along with the homosexual agenda now must contend with the American Civil Liberties Union, too. The ACLUs Lesbian and Gay Rights Project has launched a national effort, called Every Student, Every School, that plans to sue on First Amendment grounds any school that refuses gay/straight student clubs on its premises. Already, schools in Kentucky and Texas face legal action.
No compulsory public school system can be justified unless what it teaches is a worldview that the taxpayers who fund it can support. The common schools came into existence, after all, to acculturate immigrants to American values. For schools to try to indoctrinate children in a radical, minority worldview like that promoted by GLSEN and its alliesa vision that will form those childrens values and shape their sense of selfhoodis a kind of tyranny, one that, in addition, intentionally drives a wedge between parents and children and, as queer theorist Michael Warner boasts, opposes society itself. We must not let an appeal to our belief in tolerance and decency blind us to indecencyand to the individual and social damage that will result from it.
About the time Hurricane Isabel reached landfall on Thursday, September 18, 2003, a group of activists, educators, and junior high and senior high school students gathered in Washington, D.C. for the annual GLSEN (Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network) National Conference. Like the havoc that Isabel wrought on communities in North Carolina, GLSEN threatens to produce far greater
What I witnessed during these brief 72 hours left me with the conviction that GLSEN is a cultural hurricane thats hitting our schools with the kind of force and devastation that may take years to fully assess. Let me try to paint the picture.
GLSEN is a self-styled pro-gay education network targeting our kids in public schools.
The danger is in how they seek to accomplish this mission. In effect, GLSENs objective is to cut out parents and adult leaders in the childs life who dont agree with the LGBT agenda. Every speaker at the national conference made this message very clear.
On Friday night founder and co-director Kevin Jennings defiantly declared, Neither rain, nor wind, not even a hurricane will stop us from bringing justice to our schools!
A clinic earlier that day was entitled Strategies for Responding to Homophobic Bigotry: Everybodys Business! The title accurately set forth this point in their agenda-- to make the GLBT agenda everyones agenda, yours and mine included. And the strategy is to get to our kids.
Its not just that they are generously funded, though they certainly are. Revenues for 2001 were $3.35 million, and this years conference was liberally supported by Kodak, Levi Strauss, Microsoft, and IBM whose logos were emblazoned on banners, brochures, and conference freebies. For the close to 500 people in attendance, including about 100 junior high and senior high students, the companies hoped to capture this powerful purchasing sectorgays and youtharguably two of the most powerful buying sectors in America today.
No, GLSENs success comes from a carefully planned message that homosexuality, bisexuality, and transgender identity issues represent the next human rights and civil rights battle, on par with Martin Luther King, Jr and other reformers great work of the last 200 years. Again, this message is targeted at our kids. Today, GLSEN sponsors about 1700 campus student clubs, called GSAs (Gay Straight Alliances) promoting LGBT issues.
The opening plenary included Washington, D.C. delegate Eleanor Holmes. Homophobia, announced Holmes-Norton, is alive and well in the House of Representatives. She ranted on, They are a group of fools who should know better. What you [the GLSEN crowd] are doing has more to do with leaving no child behind than what Congress is doing. Speaking for a moment directly to the students in the audience, she summed up her philosophy this way, I believe that every one of you should be left alone to be who you are. The comment embodied the conference message: do whatever you want with your sexuality. Its a message our kids are hearing on many public school campuses across the nation.
Candace Gingrich, famous gay activist sister of former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, led the workshop entitled Everyday Heroes: How Openly GLBT Faculty, Administration, Students, and their Allies Help to Facilitate Safety, Support, and Respect in Our Schools. As the manager of the Human Rights Campaign's National Coming Out Project, she used the 90 minutes as a bully pulpit to rouse the forty or so of us in attendance to work to include anti-discrimination language in your school district policies and support GLBT staff to come out. At one point, suddenly aware of the steep political pitch of her comments, she said, Forgive me if Im being too political.
Never mind she was supposed to be addressing a group of public school educators.
Most importantly, you need to know that there is, coming to a school near you on April 21, 2004, GLSENs Day of Silence. This is their latest plan to impact high school and junior high students. The promotion is intended to impose a campus-wide silence in observance of LGBT issues. In 1999 300 high schools sponsored the Day of Silence. In 2001, over 1900 schools and 100,000 students participated in the event. In the words of their web site, The possibilities are endless. Their giddy confidence that the skys the limit is understandable when you consider that theyve seen over 300% growth in attendance in just four short years.
The hurricane that GLSEN represents is hitting our schools. Unlike Isabel, this hurricane doesnt threaten homes, businesses, and lands. Instead, this force threatens our most precious resourcesour kids.
Marc Fey brings ten years of teaching experience in California public schools and seven years of pastoral ministry to his work as Education Analyst at Focus on the Family.
This is why he says things like "I don't care what you do in the privacy of your own home, just keep it from the children". It must be O K to make love to an Alpaca then, as long as it is in your own bedroom, and for a man to drill another man in the backside , but not in front of the Kids. IMHO
(an excerpt from an article printed in the Des Moines Register posted on the GLSEN web site)
"... School Principal Todd Wolverton said school officials realized one month ago that the Orlando trip for 70 Creston band students would coincide with the annual Gay Days celebration scheduled for May 28 through June 3. The district's travel agent assured school officials the festival was fairly small, Wolverton said...
It was only last week, he said, that school officials realized Gay Days is expected to attract 100,000 or more adults for what organizers call "America's biggest gay and lesbian vacation experience." At that point, school administrators decided to postpone the band's three-day trip to Orlando so that it would begin June 3, the last day of the festival.
"From the school's standpoint, this has nothing to do with the sexual orientation of the group of people who will be there," Wolverton said. "It didn't make one bit of difference what the nature of the group was. We did not move this trip because of the fact that it's Gay Days 2002. We moved this trip because of the fact that there would be 100,000-plus adults partying down there in some of the same areas where we were going to have our kids."
Wolverton said he would have made the same decision had there been any other sort of large festival planned for that many adults..."
An excerpt of GLSEN's response posted on their web site:
"The leading national organization working to end anti-gay discrimination and harassment in Americas schools today expressed concern over the decision of Creston High School officials in Creston, Iowa, to postpone a band trip to Orlando that was to coincide with the citys Gay Days festival. The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, or GLSEN, said the decision and resulting controversy may further isolate lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students in local schools.
"This decision reinforces harmful stereotypes, and sends a devastating message to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students and their supporters involved in the band program, school and community," stated GLSEN Executive Director Kevin Jennings. "Regardless of motive, the school has sent a message that may lead some to conclude that gay is bad - a message with dangerous and unacceptable consequences in school."...."
Did you catch Kevin Jennings' response? "Regardless of motive, the school has sent a message that may lead some to conclude that 'gay is bad.'."
It's obvious that the school officials' motive was safety of the students. They stated that they didn't want any of their students going on any trip that would put the kids in an environment with an extremely large group of partying adults. So where's GLSEN's concern for the safety of school kids? Why would GLSEN want kids in such a risky environment?
No Kevin, it not all about safety and tolerance. It's about exposing kids to the homosexual lifestyle. We know it, and so do you.
( Posted here )
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