Blogging Bayport Alameda

May 11, 2009

Raising Holy Hell

Filed under: Alameda, School — Tags: , — Lauren Do @ 6:22 am

As mentioned by Michele Ellson on Friday, AUSD’s lil ole Elementary School Caring School Curriculum has brought down upon itself the attention of the vaguely named Capitol Resource Institute which really seems to only give a damn about LGBT issues.  Under the guise of “strengthening families” — what?  Gay people don’t have families? — they churn out press release and get called for one-off quotes around anything that mentions “gay” and “children.”   Seriously though, there is zero information about who is behind the group on the website, including funders or the board…hey…that sounds so familiar, but I digress.

The Press Release, neatly entitled: Homosexual Curriculum Meeting in Alamedarefers to “multisex,” “multisexual,” and “multisexuality” and for the life of me I can’t figure out what the heck that is or why I feel like I need to take a shower after reading the press release.  Highlights from the press release:

…This multisexual curriculum is part of AUSD’s “school safety” initiative. All students should be safe at school, but promoting safety and promoting multisexuality are not actually the same thing. Unfortunately, the social agenda first seen in San Francisco and Los Angeles continues to spread.

In kindergarten, being “welcoming” to all classmates is equated with supporting multisexuality. The first grade lesson plan trains children “to identify what makes a family” and teaches about same-sex couples. Third grade vocabulary includes “two moms” and “two dads.” Fifth graders are required “to identify stereotypes about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.”
 
“This curriculum ignores the fact that every child has a mom and a dad, to redefine ideas like ‘family.’ School absolutely should be a safe place, but this isn’t just about safety. Students have to embrace highly controversial social values or risk being labeled as bigots,” England said.

“Five year old kids aren’t ready to think on their own about sexuality — and their families’ values will be dismissed. That’s not an education in critical thinking. It’s social activism,” she said…

Clearly this lady didn’t read the actual curriculum since there is nothing, NOTHING, in the Kindergarten lesson plans that say anything, ANYTHING, about sex or sexuality.  Unless there is some perverse drawing hidden in the pages of The New Girl…and Me.

It appears that CRI is a press release producing machine, the most recent press releases “strengthen families” by dissing the LGBT community included this tip about how good families should keep their kids home on the National Day of Silence because it is “pro-homosexuality”:

…Friday is the Day of Silence, a campaign of the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), which is often used to make homosexual behavior appear normal on school campuses.

“Students should focus on academics in school. They should not be allowed to end their verbal engagement in class for a social agenda,” said Karen England, Executive Director of Capitol Resource Institute.

“We pay California teachers to teach — by speaking in classrooms — and teachers should also be expected to fully discharge their duties this coming Friday,” she said. “If a school allows teachers to stop teaching, it should not get tax dollars for educating our students on that day.”…

Then there was this one that  raises the big bad spectre of not wanting policies from that looney San Francisco in your school district next.

Best of all was the Executive Director’s characterization of Harvey Milk when asked what she thought about the proposed Harvey Milk Day:

“It’s crazy,” Karen England, executive director of Capitol Resource Institute, told News10, the Sacramento ABC affiliate. “It’s a day that celebrates the history of a gay individual for being gay. That’s his claim to fame.”

Aren’t we fortunate that Ms. England will be here, live, in Alameda to tell us all what’s what on Tuesday?   She’ll be there to testify (about what exactly?) and is urging parents, taxpayers and interested community members to join her.   Let’s hope they’ll actually be Alameda residents and not, you know, these folks.

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31 Comments

  1. Good for CRI … we need them around to keep the militant fruitcakes from trying teach our elementary school children that gay sex is great. And, regardless of your personal feelings on the issue Lauren, every child DOES have a mom and a dad.

    Comment by Jeff R. Thomason — May 11, 2009 @ 8:11 am

  2. No Jeff. Not every child has a mom and a dad. Every child has a biological mother and a biological father.

    I am a single parent. My daughter is adopted. While she obviously has birthparents, including a biological father, I am her mom. She does not have a dad. I view this curriculum as encouraging kids to accept non-traditional families of all kinds, including families like mine.

    Comment by Page Barnes — May 11, 2009 @ 8:52 am

  3. Sorry Page … regardless of your personal feelings, every child DOES have a mom and a dad. Good for you, however, for stepping up and being her adoptive mother when her real mother and father dropped the ball.

    Comment by Jeff R. Thomason — May 11, 2009 @ 11:40 am

  4. “This curriculum ignores the fact that every child has a mom and a dad, to redefine ideas like ‘family.’”

    It’s strange that the Christian lobby, which appears keen to keep sex and biology out of the elementary curriculum, chooses to highlight a “fact” that is only a fact in biological / sexual terms. It’s certainly not a fact in sociological terms.

    Comment by Andy Currid — May 11, 2009 @ 12:36 pm

  5. Lauren, thanks for the post.

    Page – I agree with you and the world is a better place for families like yours (and all the other kinds of families out there).

    Can we all agree not to chase Jeff down this particular rathole? I’m never quite sure if he believes the stuff he puts out there, but I think he mostly does it because he gets a perverse pleasure in trying to rile folks up. He’s been having particular success lately and it’s not really adding anything useful to what could be good discussions on the topics Lauren’s been posting.

    Maybe if we just ignore him he will, like most bullies, just get tired and go away.

    Comment by david burton — May 11, 2009 @ 12:50 pm

  6. JRT,

    actual definition=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mother

    Your definition= Bristol Palin & Britney Spears

    Does Levi take the baby to see his mommy in the clinker…

    Comment by member of a real family — May 11, 2009 @ 12:54 pm

  7. David,

    I was posting as you were and you are right. He isn’t worth the time it takes to cut and paste. Thanks for reminding me he has no concept of a world were people do right by children and each other.

    To the point of this post: Should the AUSD BOE even consider something said by members outside our community and parent population when making their decision? This is an issue for the parents of children who attend AUSD schools and the community members who live within its boundaries. I really want to watch the meeting tomorrow night and hear what our citizens have to say not comments from every religious zealot from across the country.

    Comment by member of a real family — May 11, 2009 @ 1:08 pm

  8. David … just a point in fact, over 50% of the voting population in California agrees with me. Or, have you conveniently forgotten about Prop 8?

    We need more people like Page … she stepped up and took care of a child who was not her responsibility when the real parents dropped the ball. Nonetheless, the child still has a real mother and father and no attempt to redefine those terms can change that. You attempted to redefine the term “marriage” and California said no. Your attempt to redefine the terms “mother” and “father” will be met with a similar fate. That is not to discount Page’s actions or her role in that child’s life … but to say that a traditional family with a mother and father actively engaged in the lives of their children isn’t inherently better for the kids is simply ridiculous.

    I am not telling you what to believe or how to raise your children …

    Comment by Jeff R. Thomason — May 11, 2009 @ 1:10 pm

  9. Jeff,

    First of all, you have no idea what circumstances led my child to be available for adoption. For you to say that her birthparents “dropped the ball” is not only uninformed; it is just plain offensive.

    But what really matters here is that every family, regardless of its composition, deserves dignity and respect. That’s what this curriculum teaches.

    Comment by Page Barnes — May 11, 2009 @ 1:53 pm

  10. –Alameda– voted no on 8 by a significant margin.

    Comment by Not That It Matters All That Much, But — May 11, 2009 @ 2:23 pm

  11. “But what really matters here is that every family, regardless of its composition, deserves dignity and respect. That’s what this curriculum teaches.”

    Unless, of course, you are a family who believes that homosexuality is wrong. In that case, we will call you names and you can feel free to leave the Island.

    Comment by Jeff R. Thomason — May 11, 2009 @ 2:50 pm

  12. #7 – interesting point you make about keeping the comments to local folks. The locals should at least get priority so that there voices are definitely heard. If the “outside” group that was coming to speak was a LGBT group would you have the same objection?

    Comment by david burton — May 11, 2009 @ 5:03 pm

  13. #12 You didn’t ask me, but I’d say yes. Alamedans and their elected representatives should decide this, not off-island “LGBT” or off-island “Christian values” groups. Can we close the bridges and tunnels tomorrow evening?

    Comment by Not That It Matters All That Much, But — May 11, 2009 @ 5:16 pm

  14. Dave B – Careful what you theoretically wish for, & remember all the organizations the district hired to put this biased curriculum together are from off our island, …if it really matters.

    Comment by Another voter — May 11, 2009 @ 7:08 pm

  15. Did you know that Oakland has more lesbians per capita than anywhere else in the world?

    Comment by Jeff R. Thomason — May 11, 2009 @ 7:40 pm

  16. #15
    “Did you know that Oakland has more lesbians per capita than anywhere else in the world?”

    Have you counted them all? I’ve seen that estimate. Personally, I think it is all based upon some male fantasy of two gals and one guy.

    My neighbors are lesbians with kids in the public schools. Nice couple and they keep their yard up. More than can be said for that hetero guy up the street who is always drunk and has an overgrown yard.

    Why is everyone so concerned about who is having sex with whom? Humans are quite adaptable and able to form all sorts of kinship groups for survival. What, you don’t have at least three generations living in your home? That isn’t a family! Families should all live under one roof. A house without grandparents is not a home.

    Comment by AlamedaNayTiff — May 11, 2009 @ 8:08 pm

  17. I posed the question about whether outside groups that promote/support the cirrriculum should also be exclucded to see if we’re all being consistent.

    I support the cirriculum. I know a number of gay parent households and I admire them greatly. I also know a number of single parents (some adoptive, some not) and I am in awe of what the extra effort they put in to support their families. I am thankful every day for my wife and the love and support she gives the rest of us in the family.

    We can’t exclude the views of outsiders just ’cause we don’t agree with them and then say we want to let in others we agree with. If you do that you’re being as closed minded as those you oppose.

    I don’t think those who are afraid of LGBT families should succeed in keeping the cirriculum out of schools (or watering it down so much it’s meaningless), but as a church going Catholic I try to understand their desire to raise their children in a certain way and hope we can find a way to teach tolerance and love without throwing them aside. Teach love and tolerance by exhibiting it ourselves. Hope that makes sense.

    Comment by david burton — May 11, 2009 @ 8:19 pm

  18. clarification….

    by “their right to raise their children…” I meant the rights of those opposed to the LGBT cirriculum. Just in case there was any confusion…

    Comment by david burton — May 11, 2009 @ 8:22 pm

  19. I’m tired of religious sects pushing their extremist Christian agenda in this community. If they really were concerned about their children’s education, they would enroll them in one of the many Christian schools in the community instead of seeking to turn children into political footballs. Extremist Christian sects have the right to practice their religion as they choose, but they don’t have the right to seek Taliban like control of our local school system. The more understanding we try to be, the more they will seek to deprive us of basic freedoms.
    http://vodpod.com/watch/1526415-frontline-where-women-are-flogged%E2%80%A6-pbs

    Comment by AlamedaNayTiff — May 11, 2009 @ 9:32 pm

  20. #18 – Amen David B.

    I expect the BOE to disapprove of ALL harassment at ALL k-12 grades, and to provide staff a method to deal with it without assuming a personal liability. If the BOE can’t agree on how staff should deal with confronting bullies esp at middle and high school levels, then I understand why staff would refrain from involvement; but this is a poor excuse to only address one form of harassment at K-5 only.

    We don’t have to define words that are misused or banned in elementary school – contact parents.

    I don’t see why people should be recognized for their sexual preference. I agree that the reading books in all the K-3 rooms should mirror their community, but this curriculum does not do that. (Kids are more dependant on in-room readers than the school library in the youngest grades)

    While middle schools may have some curriculum which examines various religions, we would not teach or describe religions in K-5. Do you see a parallel? Hindering or harming the Constitutional rights of one protected class to elevate the advocacy of another protected class (beyond their State or Constitutional rights) sounds like an unaffordable legal battle to me.
    While I am normally a Gay Rights advocate, for me a K-5 curriculum shows the pendulum has swung too far.

    Since records show there is still too much name-calling and bullying in our schools, maybe the Caring School Curriculum should be traded for a different anti-harassment program that serves to end all bullying. I would encourage examining “Safe School Ambassador” a program by ‘Community Matters’.

    No matter what – we have to train staff how to safely deal with all forms of harassment in our schools, and they have to be empowered and obligated to do it in middle and high schools too.

    Comment by Dave Kirwin — May 11, 2009 @ 9:37 pm

  21. #19 – ANT – it works both ways.

    I’m tired of LGBT advocates pushing their extremist sexual ‘freedom’ agenda in this community. If they really were concerned about their children’s education, they would enroll them in one of the many private schools in the community instead of seeking to turn children into political footballs. Extremist LGBT advocates have the right to practice their sexual ‘freedom’ as they choose, but they don’t have the right to seek hedonistic anarchy or a pagen like control of our local school system. The more understanding we try to be, the more they will seek to deprive us of basic freedoms.

    Comment by with justice and freedom for all — May 11, 2009 @ 9:45 pm

  22. All right ANT and #21, both of you chill out or we’re all going to the principals office! Maybe for a little tolerance lesson…

    ANT – lumping all us Christians into the pejorative “religious sect” isn’t open minded, liberal, kind, etc. And not everyone who is a Christian and is opposed to the LGBT is an “extremist” either I’ll bet. The practices in the clip you include, and others equally abhorrent, aren’t in the offing here and you know it. We need to battle against such practices and for the rights of women, yes indeed, but let’s keep things in perspective here in Alameda.

    #21 – why is it that those who fear the LGBT community (yes, I’m lumping you in there and pardon me if I’m wrong) seems to think that the entire community is a) some sort of sex addict, b) isn’t religious, and c) is part of some alien plot to install evil overlords that will control our every thought? The LGBT folks I know are a)in very committed relationships or would certainly like to be, b) are often going to the same churches as the rest of us (and sometimes even leading them), and c) just want a seat at the table. Alot of folks thought those “uppity blacks” (or insert your own pejorative here) were out to control the world too when they took to the streets to protest, but most of the community just wanted to live in peace and enjoy the same kind of lives as the other, more favored, folks. Take a deep breath, it’ll all be okay.

    DK, you’ve certainly put in your time on this subject but sorry, you’re not going to change any minds at the rate you’re going. Use that energy wisely; go spend some time with your wonderful family and maybe read a book with your kid (I suggest something by Percy Jackson for that age).

    Comment by david burton — May 11, 2009 @ 10:44 pm

  23. sorry, that would be a book ABOUT Percy Jackson by Rick Riordan. Now go read…..

    Comment by david burton — May 11, 2009 @ 10:47 pm

  24. Burton, I respect your views and your right to teach them to your children. I wish you would do the same for others.

    I know some of my posts have been long, especially those that contained the text of Assembly Bills, but you should go read those and see what AUSD is SUPPOSED to do! Then maybe you can comment on why you feel AUSD should not try to meet the standard of law and instead push to divide the community.

    Comment by David Kirwin — May 12, 2009 @ 6:34 am

  25. Mr. Burton,

    you asked me earlier yesterday if I would give preference to speakers from Alameda no matter what side they are on…YES. Obviously I am for this program but I am very much for being fair. The people making the presentation are not from Alameda but logic would speak to the fact that they are presenters not general public speakers.

    By the way ANT you will like this one:
    http://www.thedailyshow.com/video/index.jhtml?videoId=226608&title=Gaywatch—Marion-Barry

    Comment by member of a real family — May 12, 2009 @ 7:41 am

  26. I usually don’t post here anymore. But I feel pretty strongly about this subject. I come from a long history of school teachers in my family. It has been their belief for generations that children should be given more credit and that they- just like us- have the ability to make objective decisions based on what they’ve learned or what they hear.

    I don’t think anyone can deny that gay and lesbian families are becoming more and more commonplace. Its a fact that regardless of what you do as a parent to somehow “shelter” your kids from them that they will encounter people who are either gay, or perhaps a child from a gay or lesbian couple. School is about how to prepare children for the real world around them. That includes people from other races, religions, political leanings, and sexual orientation.

    Lastly, and unrelated to my broad reasons above, I personally don’t see why people have such diffulty accepting gay and lesbian couples as equivelants. I even feel stupid typing this. Its to me a no-brainer. We’re all here together and there are people of all stripes who are good, bad, nice, mean, sloppy, neat, poor, rich, or whatever. Its about time we put this issue to rest and give everyone the same kind of treatment that we would expect for ourselves.

    I’ve said my peace.

    Comment by edvard — May 15, 2009 @ 10:21 am

  27. I’m sure your schoolteacher parents are at piece knowing you’ve said your peace.

    Comment by Assistant Principal — May 15, 2009 @ 10:50 am

  28. They don’t know because they don’t read this blog. Shwarmy comments or not.

    Comment by edvard — May 15, 2009 @ 12:36 pm

  29. THE RECALL HAS BEGUN AND THE LAWSUITS WILL FOLLOW SHORTLY … I told you this was coming. Did you really think that the parents of Alameda would sit back and let a vocal minority attempt to indoctrinate our kids with the homosexual lifestyle? And, attempt to do it without notice? And, attempt to do it without giving us an option to opt out? The legal proceedings are just getting started. And, yes … we are well organized and well financed. We don’t care what you do in your own homes, have no desire to “cure” you, and don’t care if you want to marry each other … just don’t try to teach that crap to our kids.

    Comment by Jeff R. Thomason — August 9, 2009 @ 4:18 pm

  30. “we… don’t care if you want to marry each other”

    So why did you contribute to Prop 8?

    Comment by Andy Currid — August 9, 2009 @ 7:47 pm

  31. @Andy … Specifically to prevent this curriculum, that was proposed prior to Prop 8, from gaining validation.

    Comment by Jeff R. Thomason — August 9, 2009 @ 10:20 pm


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