I’ve been dismayed and discouraged at the Exodus national office’s March 5 defense of antigay bullying in schools, and its condemnation of gay people to Hell. I’ve been too upset, in fact, to write much for the past 10 days.
Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed by parents and students across the nation against schools that tolerate or encourage violence against students perceived to be gay. Most of these lawsuits have been successful, and taxpayers have been burdened by millions of dollars in damage claims due to the apathy and hate practiced by school officials and their defenders on the religious right.
On March 5, Exodus issued a public statement amounting to a tirade against GLSEN, one of the nation’s few organizations working in schools to stop violence and bullying against gay children.
This week we are going to break away from the continuing hot potato issue of same sex marriage and focus on children. Did you know that a few radical activist groups have a prepared plan to make your children embrace same sex attraction as early as pre-school? They want to desensitize them and create future generations of gay identified adults and silence any oppositional statements. Today’s Spotlights will briefly highlight Massachusetts pre-schoolers, the radical vision of the Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN) and why it is important that “ex-gays” not get comfortable in the activist defined closet of denial and silence.
“Whoever should cause one of these little ones to stumble…” (Mark 9:42)
Exodus spokesman Randy Thomas shows remarkable gall in quoting Mark, considering that Exodus refuses to launch or support any program to reduce antigay violence in the schools.
Instead of linking to, quoting from, or critically analyzing GLSEN’s web site, Exodus instead quotes extensively from a tirade by the American Family Association. Exodus concludes from AFA propaganda that:
Schools have been used as an agent of social instruction for a long time but what amazes me is that these “leaders” are changing your world with your money and your children. All the while telling you what your morality should look like. Reports like this come in from all over the country; just last year a similar proposal failed in Florida.
The Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN) makes their intent to brainwash children overtly clear in their 2003 Annual Report. GLSEN’s Vision statement says:
“Today and Tomorrow: For nearly 10 years, GLSEN’s work has been driven by our vision — A future in which every child learns to respect and accept all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression.”
Exodus states that it considers respect and acceptance for all people a form of brainwashing. So what alternative does Exodus support in the schools? Disrespect for gay and struggling students, apparently — and tolerance for a violent status quo.
Exodus complains that it found a GLSEN press release dated 1999 — five years ago — in which GLSEN opposes a role for ex-gays in the nation’s schools.
If — as Exodus says — the goal of ex-gays should be to promote disrespect in the schools, then it’s no wonder GLSEN is opposed to ex-gay involvement in public education.
GLSEN’s intolerance and singular focus is isolation not incorporation. Is not their goal true understanding? Their dismissive attitude toward people of faith and former homosexuals is an apparent elitist attitude of their way is the “only” way. We, who have moved beyond homosexuality, must lift our voices to shield the youngest members of our social family from having to deal with sexual morality too early. We must help young people in junior and senior high not be hemmed into a politically driven one way street.
Exodus does not promote “true understanding” when it assails the character of organizations working to stop violence and promote respect for all. Nor does it promote understanding when it shields children and teen-agers from age-appropriate information about sexuality, based on the questions kids raise and the myths that kids exchange in the schoolyard during recess.
With such rhetoric about protecting people from information — and shielding them from the facts about antigay violence — Exodus does not broaden the discussion of sexuality among secondary-school students; it seeks to shut down the discussion entirely.
Exodus concludes by quoting Mark 9:42 again:
Mark 9:42 — “But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea.”
Exodus warns that God will judge them “for what they are doing to young people.” Let’s be perfectly clear: Exodus is condemning to Hell the parents and teachers of GLSEN, the parents of those who are bullied, and the students themselves.
Exodus hangs millstones around the neck of public school children when it condemns them to a status quo of violence, verbal harassment, and sexual ignorance that results in STDs, rape, and teen pregnancy.