Reis goes on to quote an by Gay Parenting author J. Schulenberg [although she erroneously lists the author as "Schuler"] that six million children in the U.S. had a gay or lesbian parent. There is no study supporting this figure, but it is obviously another unfounded extrapolation from inflated incidence statistics. Reis then uses some bizarre mathematics to claim up to 40% of school children are either gay or have a gay relative. I confess that was where I lost all confidence in Reis’ claim to be recognized as an authority in public health education.
The Rationale section opens with an essay by Beth Reis, a public health educator from Seattle. Reis makes an unfounded extrapolation from adult data (Laumann, 1994), claiming that incidence of adult homosexuality was "at least about two and nine percent" [sic]. She then claims that those percentages automatically translate into identical percentages in high schools. In checking with my own copy of Laumann, I found the statistic was 2.8% for men and 1.4% for women (which included both homosexuals and bisexuals). Children were not even surveyed. Those who were exclusively homosexual (i.e. have never had sex with someone of the other gender) was even smaller—0.6% for men and 0.2% for women. However, a massive study of 36,741 adolescents in Minnesota conducted by Gary Remafedi (whose research Reis also quotes), found that the rate of homosexuality was 0.7% for boys and 0.2% for girls (Remafedi et al, April, 1992).
Capitol Resource Institute
The History and Danger of AB 606
[Note: Compare this California bill with the move to compel BritishColumbia schools to carry pro-homosexuality materials. See article entitled "Corren Case Moves Forward."]
AB 606 (D-Levine) was recently amended to require broad-sweeping changes toindoctrinate school children concerning homosexual, bisexuality andtranssexuality.
As amended, AB 606 would require California school districts to take specifiedactions to increase awareness and prevent incidences of discrimination andharassment based on actual or perceived sexual orientation and gender. It wouldalso require curriculum read by young school children to contain information onaccepting and embracing these various forms of sexuality.
If a school district fails to comply with the provisions in AB 606, the statesuperintendent has carte blanche discretion to withhold state-funding from thatschool district.
In order for you to understand exactly how disastrous AB 606 really is, you needto know a little background information.
AB 606 builds on AB 537, the California Student Safety and Violence PreventionAct of 2000 (SSVPA).
AB 537 added two new forms of discrimination (actual or perceived sexualorientation and actual or perceived gender) to the list of discriminationprohibited in California's public schools. In the spring of 2000, Superintendentof Public Instruction Delaine Eastin established the AB 537 Advisory Task Forceto identify, research, and recommend guidelines for implementing the SSVPA. Thegoal was to ensure that "AB 537 did not become another law that sat on abookshelf."
AB 606 is an effort to codify (make mandatory) some of the more outrageous AB537 Task Force recommendations.
The AB 537 Task Force recommended that resources are used to "createpositive, grade-appropriate visual images that include all sexual orientationsand gender identities for use in school common areas throughout the schoolyear."
The Task Force also recommended that public schools "acknowledge lesbian,gay, bisexual, and transgender historical figures and related events, concepts,and issues in the revisions of content standards and curriculum frameworks, whenappropriate."
Additionally, it recommended that public schools "identify and expand theavailable lesbian, gay, bisesxual, and transgender resources for school librarymaterials."
These specific goals are satisfied by AB 606.
AB 606 would repeal current provisions in the law that keep curriculum frombeing forced on school districts in order to advance SSVPA objectives. In otherwords, AB 606 would mandate that curriculum and classroom time be used to teachchildren to embrace homosexuality, bisexuality and transsexuality.
AB 606 would require all public schools to do what is currently being done atSan Leandro High School in the Bay Area.
At San Leandro High School, a rainbow-flag poster, with pink triangles and othersymbols of homosexual pride, and containing a pro-homosexual message, has beenordered to be posted in all classrooms. Five teachers have protested, based ontheir religious convictions. This has resulted in a standoff between theseteachers and the school administration.
Pushing homosexual indoctrination on young children is being packaged and soldin the name of "preventing violence." No one wants incidences ofviolence to occur on school campus. Violence is never acceptable on publicschool grounds. AB 606, however, goes beyond addressing violence on schoolcampus.
If the goal were simply to prevent violence, legislation could be enacted toensure that public school administrators promptly address all incidences ofviolence when they occur, regardless of what they are about.
AB 606 is not about safe schools, it's about molding and shaping the minds ofyoung children to accept various forms of sexuality regardless of what theirparents or religious beliefs tell them.
AB 606 will surely conflict with parental rights and the religious beliefs ofboth parents and students.
The Philadelphia School District has launched a new advance in the battle to indoctrinate school children into the "gay" agenda with its announcement that October is "Gay and Lesbian History Month."
And a report on Family News in Focus said officials there will make sure parents relinquish their children for that "education."
"If there is a parent who wants to remove their child from school," district spokesman Fernando Gallard told the report, "they would have to deal with the truancy regulations."
His comments came after a number of protests erupted over the school system's formalization of its "gay" agenda recognition.
The district reports that it already has had about 120 complaints about the recognition, even though Gallard explained there are no special activities associated with the formal recognition.
One of those complaints was from a parent who said she would keep her child home for the month, and that prompted Gallard's threat.
School officials say they added the recognition this year "to be more inclusive" and follow a district policy requiring equity for all races and minority groups, according to Cecilia Cummings, a school community relations executive.
However, of the many minorities available for recognition, the only other groups receiving that are the Hispanic Heritage in September, African American in February and Asian Pacific American in May, officials confirmed, all three racial minorities.
"We knew that this would be controversial," Cummings told The Philadelphia Inquirer. "When you deal with diversity, there are some hot-button issues that emerge."
Parent Senita Watson took it a step further than many, traveling to school district headquarters to see about arrangements for her to homeschool her daughter for October.
"How can you celebrate gay and lesbian month? What are you going to teach my daughter," she demanded. She also called on other parents to boycott the district.
Leaders within the "gay" movement have praised the school district's decision to promote, at its own expense, their goals. A "gay" newspaper Philadelphia used the school district's announcement for a promotion, asking a survey question on its website about whether schools should be teaching "gay" perspectives.
They already are, according to Alberta Wilson, of Faith First Education Assistant Corp. She told Family News in Focus that even elementary school phonics cards have been through the "'gay" editing process.
"They're teaching three syllable words, the word 'fam-i-ly,'" she told Focus. "And on those phonics cards they have a mom and a dad, an elderly grandparent and grandfather raising children, and then they have two men and two women," she said.
"They are teaching our young children that this is acceptable and that they should tolerate it. It is an outrage; it's against God, and God is not pleased."
One e-mail about the situation gave rise to a new perspective on the issue.
"Whatever happened to the separation of church and the state, that liberals keep harping about? Everyone knows, or should know that homosexuality is one of the tenets of the church of the devil. So, why is it that the devil's tenets can be espoused in school, but not the word of God?"
"Besides, is there a month for heterosexuality?"
Cummings said school officials have heard such questions over and over, but the district hasn't made plans for any such balancing recognition.
And Peter LaBarbera, president of the conservative Americans for Truth, told Baptist Press in promoting homosexual rights "by definition you have to undermine people's religious rights and religious beliefs.
"If you have a gay history month, you're basically saying, 'This is a wonderful part of American history - homosexual history - let's celebrate it and let's teach the kids that this is like civil rights.' Are they going to teach the role that homosexual behavior had in the onset of HIV and AIDS?"
The time to act is now to help stop the proposed pro-homosexuality programs. Here are some things you can do. Would you do one or two of them at least? 1. Write to: The Premier, Parliament Buildings, Victoria, B. C., objecting to the provincial government’s allowing such programs. Send copies of your letter to the Minister of Education at the same address, to your MLA, and to the BCTF, your local school board, and the local teachers’ association. Also send copies to the leaders of other provincial parties. 2. Write a letter to your local newspaper. 3. If you are a parent, bring the matter up at the Parent Advisory Council meeting for your school, if your child attends public school. 4. Form an ad-hoc committee of like-minded people. Speak together with a firm (but not shrill) voice. (BC Parents and Teachers for Life will gladly give what information we can to help you.) Get your school board to act to prevent schools being used to propagandize for controversial, unhealthy behaviour. 4. You could phone the Ministry of Education, Public Affairs Branch at 387-4611, ask for the Curriculum branch, and leave your message, asking that you receive a reply. 5. If you are a high-school student, you and like-minded friends could make a respectful representation to the educational authorities. In all your communications, stress that you are for the protection of all students from violence, but oppose the indoctrination of students for the homosexual life-style. We must be accurate about our facts, show concern for others, and stand up for the rights of parents and the welfare of students.
The definition of heterosexism includes the statement that it is the I don’t dispute the definition, but point out that such beliefs are foundational to many religions, whose beliefs are protected by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The gay movement may not agree with their beliefs, but they must respect them, as must teachers, who are bound by a Code of Ethics to respect the sensibilities of their students. Certainly, the recent unanimous BC Court of Appeal ruling overturning GALE BC’s earlier victory against the Surrey School Board, asserts that points of view formed from religious convictions do have a role to play in the formulation of policies and practices in the public school system (McKenzie, September 20, 2000). It is not the role of educators to teach children that their religious beliefs about sexuality are erroneous.
As well, a new group, , has started meeting with local school boards to protestwhat it sees as the basic unfairness of giving a special interest group a say inthe education of their children.
So, the question then is: What rights do parents have todetermine what parts of the provincially mandated curriculum their children willlearn and how they will learn it? Many teachers may be surprised to learn thatthose boundaries are very restricted and, have, for years, been clearly definedby the Ministry of Education. The policy, currently described as the AlternativeDelivery Policy, clearly defines the areas of the curriculum where students andtheir parents or guardians may arrange for alternative delivery of instruction;namely, the Health curriculum organizer of Health and Career Education K to 7,Health and Career Education 8 and 9, and Planning 10, and the PersonalDevelopment curriculum organizer of Personal Planning K to 7. The policy doesnot apply to any other prescribed learning outcomes in those IRPs. Nor does itapply to any other BC provincial curriculum.
In a letter from the deputy minister sent to all the education partner groups inSeptember 2006, this policy was, once again, reiterated "in order toclarify some common misunderstandings" with regard to its application."The policy does not permit schools to omit addressing or assessing any ofthe prescribed learning outcomes within the health and career educationcurriculum," the letter states, and goes on to say, "Neither does itallow students to be excused from meeting the expectations of any prescribedlearning outcomes related to health. It is expected that students who arrangefor alternative delivery will address the learning outcomes and will be able todemonstrate that they have done so."
Just so that we are all clear, the Alternative Delivery policy applies only tothe health organizers of the above-named IRPs and to no others. What this meansis that there are no other areas of the curriculum that students have the optionof not being in attendance or accessing alternative means by which to achievethe required learning outcomes. So, when a student says he or she can’tparticipate in lessons, other than those of the health organizers, for whateverreason, our response needs to be that they are required to be in attendance andare not exempted from meeting the prescribed learning outcomes.
This brings us back to the examples described earlier where teachers haveallowed parental pressure to determine what and how we teach to meet therequirements of the curriculum. As professionals, we have a duty to address thelearning needs of all our students by ensuring that they be exposed to ideas,materials, and knowledge that informs and educates them about the world in whichthey live. When we relinquish our right to professional autonomy and bend to thedictates of a small segment of the parent population, we do a disservice to ourstudents as a whole.
So, when a parent declares that a teacher’s choice of a novel to be used inclass must be vetted by the parent first; when, in social studies, children arelearning about the different family models, a parent objects to the inclusion ofsame-sex parented families; or when a child is not permitted to attend music orphysical education classes because of the religious beliefs of the family, weneed to take a stand. Our response should be, "This is the public educationsystem and I am required to follow the mandated provincial curriculum. Ifyou are not happy about that, there are other educational options available toyou and to your child."
Tactic 1: Broaden the debate
Lamont's audience that day included gay and lesbian teachers, as well as an"adjustment counselor" and a school librarian.
Lamont gave them an "umbrella" talking point he said was developedwith the help of the National Education Association: "Addressing anti-LGBTharassment in schools creates safer and better schools for students."
Teachers were advised how to use that talking point to justify things such aspro-gay curricula and GLSEN's student clubs.
But one gay activist in the audience objected: Why do we have to give in to the"other side's" argument by putting the emphasis on "all"students? Why can't we just be up front about wanting to focus on gays andlesbian kids?
Lamont's response was revealing: Most students in GLSEN's 3,000 clubs areactually heterosexual, he said. And the majority of complaints regardinghomosexual-related harassment come from "straight" kids.
So, "use this tactic of broadening" to "every child," hesaid.
It's a smart strategy: Not only does it mask the fact that there aren't enoughgay students to warrant the immersion of entire student bodies in pro-gaypropaganda, but it also gives GLSEN convenient heterosexual student"allies" who put themselves in the role of defending perceived gay"victims."
How to respond:
As good as this tactic is, it's still possible for parents to counteract itby exposing it as a Trojan horse, said Caleb Price, a research analyst for Focuson the Family.
"Make it a fairness issue," he advised. "While it's true thatevery child needs a safe school, there's no need to create a special class ofcitizens who get more protection than others. Parents can point out thatapproximately 80 percent of school kids experience some form of bullying atschool -- so why not give attention to all children who need protection --including those who are overweight, wear glasses, etc."
. . . .
Even Brenda High, whose son committed suicide after being bullied, has opposedsafe-school policies that create special categories for homosexuals.
"The efforts to include definitions of classes of victims, also excludesother victims, making it more difficult to protect kids," shesaid.
Parents can also expose GLSEN's true agenda -- one of its student manuals, forexample, mentions getting homosexual themes "fully integrated intocurricula across a variety of subject areas and grade levels."
Tactic 2: Make it personal
Lamont also revealed that GLSEN put together focus groups of kids todetermine which messages resonated most powerfully.
The conclusion? Moms and dads have the most influence. After that, "themost effective tactic proved to be personalization" -- i.e., stories kidshear from their peers or other people who are personally affected byhomosexuality.
To illustrate the point, Lamont related what happened when researchers showedthe group a video featuring Judy Shepard, whose son, Matthew, was murdered in1998 in Wyoming.
"I'm glad I was behind glass, because I almost fell out of my chair,"Lamont said.
The very first comment from a focus group kid was, "How much did that[profanity referring to Judy Shepard] get paid?" Lamont remembered."Because to them it looked like a paid celebrity preaching to them."
But when researchers replaced the video with the "personalization"method, he said, "one of the kids even came out in the focus group."
"Wow, that's powerful," one teacher commented.
Which is why GLSEN is working tirelessly to get gay speakers into publicschools.
How to respond:
If your school invites a homosexual speaker, challenge the school to openthe forum to other perspectives, including ex-gays.
To find local ex-gay speakers, contact Exodus International.
There is solid legal backing for this approach: At least one federal court hasruled that school districts are illegally engaging in "viewpointdiscrimination" by excluding ex-gay and conservative perspectives whenaddressing homosexuality.
Tactic 3: Threaten lawsuits
"This is almost our trump card," Lamont told his audience."Make it a money issue."
When all else fails, he said, threaten a lawsuit. Warn schools they're"legally liable for not protecting young people."
"In all the cases brought, to date, the student either prevailed aftertrial or achieved a settlement," read a handout distributed at theworkshop.
How to respond:
But what GLSEN doesn't tell schools is that, rather than deflectinglawsuits, they may actually become more vulnerable to them by adopting policiesand curricula that single out gay and lesbian individuals, said Mike Johnson,senior legal counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund, a legal group based inArizona.
"Schools are better off using blanket-protection policies," he said,"that shield all students from bullying or harassment."
The dark side of sexual-orientation policies advocated by GLSEN, Johnson said,is that they often trample on the free-speech rights of students with opposingviewpoints.
"Organizations like the Alliance Defense Fund have won hundreds of freespeech cases nationwide and are willing to stand in the gap for parents,students and school officials," he said.