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February 10, 2012

Diversity traning good?... Gay acceptance bad?

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I came across a controversial article this week about teaching acceptance of gays and lesbians… to younger children...in schools.  There are many who don’t consider gay rights a topic of discussion that is appropriate for school, especially elementary-aged children.  When the unwelcomed topic starts to creep into our schools, it causes even more friction for those with conservative lifestyle views vs. those who have liberal lifestyle practices. 

We all agree that bullying is a problem.  That’s one thing we can cross off the list.  The question of how to handle and prevent it is a much bigger issue that remains unresolved.  Is it appropriate for schools to teach diversity and acceptance of races and religions?  Is it appropriate for them to teach diversity and acceptance of gays and lesbians?  There are many families that believe these lessons should be taught in schools at an early age, just as you would teach children how to share crayons.  Same-sex families want to be recognized and accepted, not ostracized, for being “different.”  In D.C. public schools, a city where it is legal to have a same-sex marriage, a plan has been developed to increase gay awareness in schools.  There is the belief that teaching acceptance and diversity at an early age will help prevent bullying in the future.  True or False?

There are many other families that oppose this type of curriculum.  It is not the duty of the school system to expose their children to a way of life that is immoral and unacceptable in their eyes.  In a society that is oversexed, why should their children be introduced to an alternative sexual lifestyle?  They appreciate diversity training just as much as most, but not at the risk of teaching their children about homosexuality too soon or at all.  Just as parents have the right to opt out of sex education classes being taught to their children, shouldn’t they have the option to opt out of diversity training that includes conversations about homosexuality?

Is it true that “highly publicized teen suicides tied to anti-gay bullying,” according to the Washington Post article, have contributed to the need to the change in school curriculum?  Who should be held accountable? Is it the job of the school to teach gay sensitivity training?  Do parents have the right to object to diversity training when it mentions homosexuality?

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