Friday, January 14, 2005

‘School for Seduction’



Where will you be on “We Are Family Day,” this March 11th?

Will you be with your family? Will you spend the day with your children? Will you invite family and friends over to the house for barbequed chicken, hot dogs and hamburgers? Will the Mrs. make her famous pizza-flavored potato salad?

Or… will you be indifferent to “We Are Family Day” while your children are in one of 61,000 lucky schools nationwide, private and public, celebrating this glorious day without your concern?

Wouldn’t it just be terrible if you missed out on “We Are Family Day”?

I mean… it’s all about “families,” right?

Well, not exactly.

“What is ‘We Are Family Day’?”

On March 11th grammar schools across the nation will stop teaching reading, writing and arithmetic (if they are actually doing this in the first place) and will hold a program teaching “gay tolerance.”

The program includes a video on “gay acceptance,” featuring SpongeBob SquarePants and Barney the dinosaur. Materials provided by the “We Are Family Foundation” include comprehensive lesson plans for teachers.

Discussion on homosexuality will be encouraged for all students and children will be asked to visit the foundation’s website to take a “tolerance pledge,” which includes sexual orientation.

The distribution of the video is being sponsored by FedEx and will coincide with the video's broadcast March 11 on Nickelodeon, PBS, and the Disney Channel in celebration of the proposed “National We Are Family Day.”

No children’s TV character will be left behind in the effort. Characters appearing in the video are from award-winning shows including “Arthur,” “Barney,” “Bear in the Big Blue House,” “Between the Lions,” “Blue's Clues, Bob the Builder,” “The Book of Pooh,” “Clifford the Big Red Dog,” “Dora the Explorer,” “Jimmy Neutron,” “JoJo's Circus,” “Kim Possible,” “Lilo & Stitch: The Series,” “Little Mermaid,” “Madeline,” “The Magic School Bus,” “The Muppet Show,” “The Proud Family,” “Rugrats,” “Sesame Street,” “SpongeBob SquarePants,” and “Zoom.”

The video also features cameo appearances by entertainers Bill Cosby, Diana Ross and Whoopi Goldberg.

How come we can’t get this sort of comprehensive effort in schools for reading, writing and arithmetic?

Now, here we go again. The word “tolerance” pops up like a stubborn weed in the middle of the lawn. Not only is the weed there, obstructing an otherwise well-kept yard, but the PC police will not allow you to mow it down.

How can anybody be against “tolerance,” unless they are… (gasp), “intolerant,” right? If you are against this program in public and private schools you must be a… (gasp), “homophobe,” right?

For me the issue is one of common sense and has nothing to do with “intolerance.”

Our schools are churning out students who cannot read, write or add and subtract. But these same yahoos that can’t teach Johnny (or Juan, depending upon your city's demographics) anything useful in life are going to teach “tolerance” to grammar school kids in furtherance of Gay Awareness.

I’m all for “tolerance” regarding anyone except criminals but schools should not be the place where sexual orientation is preached or discussed. Shouldn’t all of this be between parents and their children and, if need be, a decent therapist?

Shouldn’t teachers be teaching other things?

What about the kids themselves? Is there a desperate need for this info in Kindergarten-sixth grade? Is the idea of “intolerance” foremost in their minds?

I don’t know about you but when I was in these grades my biggest problem was which side would want me at recess for “tackle the man with the ball.” I was also fond of sweet-tarts and was always concerned about whether I’d have enough change for a steady supply.

I didn’t have a clue what “sexual orientation” was so I wasn’t “intolerant” about it. I was VERY intolerant of my 5th-grade English teacher, Mrs. McMickle, who forced me to write hundreds of lines at a time for challenging her instruction about sentence elements (who cares about “dangling participles”?).

Maybe times have changed since I was in school. Maybe there ARE tens of thousands of gay students being intolerated and homophobied… I don’t know.

Maybe there are thousands of children in our schools who are gay and don’t know it yet and they need the teachers to show them how to be gay the right way. Maybe teachers who can’t teach children anything else CAN properly instruct them on “sexual orientation.”

But, I kind of doubt that.

I’m fairly sure Mrs. McMickle wouldn’t have handled it well.

So, what will you do on “We Are Family Day,” on March 11th?

Well, I’d suggest you keep the kids home, play hooky from work and have a nice barbeque.

20 Comments:

At 9:45 AM, Blogger Aldon Hynes said...

I think it is great to support families. Here are a few families that are worth checking out

http://theothermother.typepad.com/blog/

and

http://www.lmfamily.org/

So, yes, spend time with your family, and try to understand families that are different from your own.

 
At 12:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Civic decency is part and parcel of public education. Having part of a day dedicated to awareness and tolerance of others' differences is hardly a waste of time, nor will it somehow cause mass illiteracy or innumeracy because a couple of precious hours of class time was diverted.

I facilitated similar "human relations" seminars (covering all forms of discrimination and intolerance) in my public school. People got to jam out on a class of their choosing for it - facilitators like myself had the whole day off. I'm sure they got more out of the experience than they would've in another 50 minute Geography class. I know I did. And as far as I know, none of them are profoundly undereducated as a result.

 
At 12:35 PM, Blogger jessgirl said...

I agree with you totally. I do not believe that schools should be devoting an entire day to teaching children something that their parents should be teaching them. Maybe the thinking behind this is that children who live in intolerant households will be "shown the light" by this. I disagree. Children spend way more time (hopefully) being taught and influenced by their parents words and actions than by their teachers'.
I really don't see why this is something younger grades need to be taught in school. I could understand an assembly for highschool kids, but grade schoolers?
I admit I don't have children of my own. But, I don't remember such things as sexual orientation being an issue when I was in grade school. Grant it, that was quite a while ago.

 
At 12:44 PM, Blogger Kerry R. Fox said...

"I facilitated similar "human relations" seminars (covering all forms of discrimination and intolerance) in my public school."

"Facilitator," huh? Either that's what teachers are calling themselves now or you represent an organization that goes to public schools to indoctrinate children in something that isn't any of the public school's business... or both.

"And as far as I know, none of them are profoundly undereducated as a result."

From one city to the next, from one county and state to the next, the numbers do not back you up on this one.

If you are a teacher you need to stop "facilitating" and start teaching kids the basics, because you are failing to do so now. If you represent a specific lobbyist group pushing an agenda of some sort you should be kept away from public schools and required to keep your opinions, agenda and feel good marketing baloney at a safe distance from impressionable school children.

 
At 1:50 PM, Blogger natalie said...

I think school should be where kids learn about text-book types of things, like math, english, science, etc. But life things should be learned at home. Sadly, too many parents aren't involved in this area of their kids' lives. But... it is still not the school's responsibility to teach kids sex ed or tolerance. If they get pregnant at 15 or are intolerant, that falls on the parents, not the school. Besides, there are A LOT of parents who totally disagree with homosexuality. Thus, I am a homeschooler!

 
At 1:58 PM, Blogger SheaNC said...

I was a child once myself. I remember what it was like... children in general were intolerant, cruel, violent, filled with biases and predjudices. Many enjoyed causing emotional and/or physical pain. Those who were able would beat the living crap out of anyone they could, sometimes for a reason, sometimes not.

They were products of their environment, so obviously the idea that tolerance should be taught at home is worthless if that teaching never takes place. Much of the time the home environment is what created the bad behavior in the first place.

So, if it takes one day a year to teach children not to torment, ridicule, or beat up those who are different, then I say it is well worth it. Quite frankly, I think they should teach it a little bit every day, because those same intolerant, violent kids grow up and extrapolate those feelings into warfare and global domination.

 
At 2:12 PM, Blogger Kerry R. Fox said...

SheaNC,

Okay. I think what you are referring to is basic bullying. I think the subject matter of the article is, well... a bit different than that.

And, yes, there are some things that cannot be corrected at home, as that is the source of the problem.

I don't think that what you are referring to can be cured by bringing in NAMBLA or the Gay Lobby.

 
At 2:23 PM, Blogger Spork said...

If you visit the website for the We Are Family Foundation, you will find that the tolerance they are promoting is focused on different racial and ethnic backgrounds. In fact, i searched the site for any reference to any homosexual topics, and there were none.

But even if there were portions of this program devoted to discussing homophobia, it wasn't that long ago that I was in school, and I remember that well enough to think that a little tolerance could go a long way.

Spork

 
At 2:38 PM, Blogger Kerry R. Fox said...

Spork,

No. You are correct about that. I took a look at that site when I read the original story and there are no references there to this particular "tolerance" activity. But, IT IS this organization that is behind this activity in the schools on that day.

There's absolutely nothing wrong with teachers giving some sort of instruction/lessons about different racial backgrounds. But, again, lobby groups should not be brought into grammar schools to cover "sexual orientation."

If the motive is the one being purported, "tolerance" of gay people or "homophobia," it would seem to be more appropriate in high school, as someone suggested earlier in this discussion, as that's when there is a problem with "gay tolerance" and "homophobia."

I'd sure like to hear some evidence that either is a big problem in K-6.

But, then... young people pretty much know if they are gay or not by high school, don't they?

Maybe the motive is not what is being purported.

 
At 3:05 PM, Blogger Superhappyjen said...

What's more important? In my opinion, although literacy and numeracy are important, tolerance is infinitely more important. Math won't make a child a better person, but tolerance will. Shouldn't it be the jobs of both teachers AND parents to teach something so all important?

I personally don't see anything wrong with homosexuality but I realise many parents will teach their children that it is wrong. Fine. However, too often this leads to hatred of homosexuals instead of simply disagreeing with their lifestyle. To me tolerance means respecting others even if you disagree with them.

Disagreeing with homosexuality is like disagreeing with Buddhism. It may not be your lifestyle, and it may not represent your beliefs, but the people should be respected.

 
At 3:10 PM, Blogger Kerry R. Fox said...

"To me tolerance means respecting others even if you disagree with them."

That sounds good to me too. Perhaps I should be advocating "pundit tolerance," as it seems many disagree with me on this one...:-)

 
At 4:10 PM, Blogger girlfiend said...

Where I went to grade school, the boys who played "tackle the man with the ball" called it "smear the queer." Most, if not all of those kids learned to read and write and graduated from four year colleges. they're also homophobes. A little tolerance training never hurt.

 
At 4:15 PM, Blogger Kerry R. Fox said...

girlfiend,

"Where I went to grade school, the boys who played 'tackle the man with the ball' called it 'smear the queer.'"

Sounds like a rough school.

 
At 5:00 PM, Blogger SheaNC said...

Rough!? Rough? [tugging at necktie], Hoo boy, my school was so rough that...

 
At 7:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another excellent article. Keep on, keeping on, my friend!

oej

 
At 2:56 PM, Blogger Jade said...

I am not sure that I am for the schools teaching these things in place of what they are supposed to teach. We are having enough problems with education, is this necessary? Isn't it the parents jobs to teach these things to our children? I know I do and I'd much rather have me there for my kids to ask questions to than a 20 year old new teacher. Tollerance is important in my household, I know I can't be the only one.

 
At 7:42 PM, Blogger downtownlad said...

Well I'm gay, and I think the schools should spend their time teaching math, english, science, etc. Spending an entire day on "diversity", etc. is just dumb. But at the same time, schools should be teaching real subjects such as evolution, and not bogus science such as "intelligent design". It cuts both ways.

However, they should teach teachers to be on the lookout for bullying, which is often propagated against gay students. And gay students are much more likely to commit suicide in high school, mostly due to bullying. It is amazing how many teachers ignore this.

The teen suicide rate has plummeted 25% over the last ten years due to more tolerance for gay people. I think only those who bully should be forced to attend "tolerance" training. Let the rest learn math.

 
At 8:39 PM, Blogger Alan Levering said...

I have been doing some research on my own on this video and came across this thread via Google so thought I would chime in.

Well. after reading these two articles (#1: http://headlines.agapepress.org/archive/1/42005c.asp; #2: http://headlines.agapepress.org/archive/1/102005a.asp), The skeptic in me said that it could not be THAT bad, so I did some checking. I went to the website that the video will be advertising -- http://wearefamilyfoundation.org -- and looked for myself. All I found was a lot of generic language on tolerance and lots of information about the March 2005 video and the media/educational campaign that follows . . . UNTIL I dug a little deeper. There is a convenient "Search" bar on the site so I helped myself to see if anyterms like "sexual" or "sex" might be found on the list (even in terms such as Sexism). I found it peculiar that no listings were found. I tried several other terms that would appy and got no "hits." I decided to peruse the site myself only to find the term "sexual" listed in a few places, therefore telling me that the search engine was obviously not indexing the entire site and was apparently only providing pre-screened content. Thank heavens for Google!! I ran the following Advanced Search on Google (you can copy and past this and do the search yourself!): [ sexual site:wearefamilyfoundation.org ]. (Also you can simply click here: http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=navclient&ie=UTF-8&rls=RNWE,RNWE:2004-49,RNWE:en&q=sexual+site%3Awearefamilyfoundation%2Eorg )

I got SEVEN hits which I have viewed and I will comment on each of them below. {Keep in mind that, as the prviously posted articles say, the basic goal of the kids video (and the media frenzy that will most assuredly accompany it) is to not only promote so- called "tolerance" but to re-direct the viewers (children, teachers, parents) back to the "We Are Family" website for more information and resources.}

1. http://www.wearefamilyfoundation.org/TEACHERS/wfc_s1.asp (Worksheet -- part of item 3, below, asking questions to prompt writing on sexual orientation of fellow students and the feelings the knowledge of their orientation generates)

2. http://www.wearefamilyfoundation.org/tolerance_pledge.asp (Tolerance Pledge that includes "...I pledge to have respect for people whose ... sexual identity [among other items listed]... [is] different from my own."

3. http://www.wearefamilyfoundation.org/TEACHERS/wfc_use.asp ("Using This Guide" part of "Writing for Tolerance", includes the hope that this guide will "...reach people in a broad range of ages, classes, sexual orientations, [list continues] ...)

4. http://www.wearefamilyfoundation.org/TEACHERS/wfc_resources.asp (list of resources including: American Psychological Association. "Answers to Your Questions About Sexual Orientation and Homosexuality." Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association, 1998. By the Way, this is the FIRST resource listed!!; Also listed: Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays. "Faith in Our Families: Parents, Families and Friends Talk About Religion and Homosexuality." Washington, DC: Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, 1999. Of course, NO listings by PFOX or any other pro-gay-change/ex-gay resource)

5. http://www.wearefamilyfoundation.org/ADL_101Ways_YourComm.htm (101 Ways to Combat Prejudice #93: Meet with school and community librarians and local bookstores to discuss ways to highlight literature that is representative of all cultures and sexual orientations. #40: Organize a No-Ethnic/Homophobic Humor Open-Mike Nite featuring stand-up comedy by students. #14: Initiate classroom discussions of terms such as anti-Semitism, racism, sexism, homophobia and bias. Then compose a list of definitions and post it in a prominent place; ALSO, under Subtitle: "Developing A Common Language" is this: Heterosexism -- Heterosexism is prejudice and/or discrimination against people who are or who are perceived to be lesbian, gay or bisexual. Homophobia is the irrational fear of people who are believed to be lesbian, gay, or bisexual.

6. http://www.wearefamilyfoundation.org/PrinterFriendyPages/Article_MissAmerica.htm ("Miss America 2004 -- Tolerance Out, Understanding In" By Lauren Parker {Interviewing the Current Miss America, who is African-American}: "Dunlap also explains that 'acceptance' needs to spread far beyond black-white race issues, and far beyond race in general. 'America isn't just black and white, so I don't approach my platform from just a racial standpoint,' she says. 'It's about uplifting everyone--people of all varied religious beliefs, sexual orientations, class differences, cultural diversities, and the like.' "

7. http://www.wearefamilyfoundation.org/PDFs/WeAreFamily-guide.pdf ("We Are Family" Guide Activities geared to grades Pre-K through Grade 12, including: {from high school activity -- "Pyramid of Hate"} "...Ask the students if they can think of examples of genocide that occured due to race, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, etc...."; {also from "Pyramid of Hate"} Student Handout including these questions: Have you Ever... Overheard a joke that made fun of a person of a different ethnic background, race, religion, gender or sexual orientation? Have You Ever... Been the target of name calling because of your ethnic group, race, religion, gender or sexual orientation? Have You Ever... Engaged in stereotyping (lumping together all people of a particular race, religion, or sexual orientation?)



So the second article was EXACTLY on target by saying this is a "Stealth" campaign to promote acceptance and tolerance of homosexulaity to grade school and pre-school aged children across North America and beyond!!

Please pray that God would show you how you can respond in your own community. Also, please forward ALL THREE of these articles to as many people as you can so we can inform the public as to the true meaning behind this campaign!!

Blessings

--Alan Levering; Founder, NCXDS Ex-Gay Internet Christian Ministries

Web: < http://geocities.com/exgaylinks > |
Discussion Board: < http://groups.yahoo.com/group/exgaydiscussionboard > |
Spanish Language Discussion Board: < http://groups.yahoo.com/group/exgayenespa > |
"Wounded Heart" Abused Men's Group: < http://groups.yahoo.com/group/woundedheart > |
Chat: < http://groups.yahoo.com/group/exgaydiscussionboard/chat >

Feel free to link to these pages on your own website!!!

 
At 5:03 PM, Blogger Alan Levering said...

What the liberal media fails to realize is that the video in question makes 2 separate references to the Foundation, including a clip from the character "Mouse" from PBS's "Between the Lions" which shows he apparently has found the Foundation's website on his computer.

The Foundation, itself, beyond just the "Tolerance Pledge" has at least SIX different references to homosexuality, sexual identity, or sexual orientation in its site's materials, mostly in suggested lesson plans (from previous campaigns) aimed at school-aged children.

The actual lesson plans that will be accompanying the video are not publicly posted anywhere for review, so no one knows what the exact package will contain (Though MSNBC supposedly has a copy).

My website's discussion board has research showing at least SEVEN references on WAFF's website as well as a sample letter to school administrators who might be showing the video or other pro-gay material in the classroom (see links, below).

Yes tolerance can and should be promoted, but would it not be better to use more neutral or all-inclusive language, like "tolerance for individuals no matter what there difference is." "You should not tease other kids no matter what the reason is." "You should try to get along with others even if you disagree on things."

These are simple statements that ANY sane person would accept as true and healthy for young children to hear, but SPECIFICALLY singling out homosexuality among a list of other groups does something more -- it attempts to bring homosexuality to the same level and status of other minority or oppressed groups as if it is something to be honored, not just shown tolerance to.

In addition, I find it fascinating that not only has WAFF threatened a lawsuit against AFA but has also REMOVED most of the offensive pro-gay pages from its site, especially the ones that AFA has specifically referenced (including #'s 1, 3 & 4 from my earlier post). Is this an attempt at making peace or an attempt at removing evidence?? (for more info on this see: http://www.earnedmedia.org/sbm0125.htm )

Research: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/exgaydiscussionboard/message/13428
Letter: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/exgaydiscussionboard/message/13456

--Alan Levering, Director & Founder, NCXDS Ex-Gay Internet Christian Ministries

 
At 6:11 PM, Blogger Alan Levering said...

To further prove the makers' intentions, some of the makers have also produced an episode of "Postcards from Buster" (An Arthur Spin-off on PBS) that shows them visiting a real lesbian couple with a child in Vermont. The Bush Administration heard about it and has denied it being able to air it on PBS, but I guess FCC rules state that individual stations are free to air it if they wish but it will not be shown nationally (The Boston affiliate -- WGBH -- who was one of the producers is still planning on airing it.)

BTW -- Arthur, Buster and the gang ALL appear on the SpongeBob video as well! Coincidence????

--Alan Levering

 

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