Holy moly cheeseballs and pie. I don't even like cheeseballs but I love cheese and cheese comforts me and in times like these, cheeseballs may be the answer.
The CVUSD board meeting tonight was one I should have brought a flask for.
I want to truly start out by saying this: If you have not researched and read the FAIR Education Act, PLEASE do so. Read the suggested examples, digest proposed framework, understand what exactly you're for or against before forming an opinion. I say this respectfully, because it was clear many people responded based to fear-mongering propaganda as opposed to actually taking time to understand what it means for curriculum. And, it's in no one's best interest, not even your children's, to not educate yourself.
First and foremost, I'm going to pull from Betsy Connolly's (board trustee) words because it became quite apparent through a few speakers that people don't actual understand how CVUSD operates, how our board operates, or how our curriculum committee operates. YES! There is a curriculum committee! For everyone who suggested the groundbreaking idea of forming a committee... it ALREADY EXISTS and you just didn't know it. LITERALLY. This committee is comprised of CVUSD teachers and specialists who specialize in the subject at hand and make curriculum-based judgments. FOR. EVERY. TOPIC. You've trusted them allllll this time to do just that.
Whaaaaaaa? No, yes, like for realsie. So.... the curriculum you've been fine with as of late? It's because YOU and the BOARD trusted this committee to make appropriate decisions and judgment calls on curriculum that are age- and content- appropriate, and they've done so. Why would you assume it would be any different now? Are you unaware of this process or do you really, actually believe the curriculum is all of a sudden going to tell five-year-old Billy, in detail, about the sex life of an LGTBQ+ community figure? We don't talk about that now regarding our heterosexual historical figures so why in the fuckety-fuck-fuck do you think the District is all of a sudden going to go balls deep, in... balls?
HISTORY TALKS ABOUT HETEROSEXUAL INDIVIDUALS ALL OF THE TIME. And guess what, they're able to do it without saying, "Abe Lincoln went home to screw the shit-balls out of his wife."
Why ANYONE would think this would be ANY different when ammending history and social science lessons to rectify a history excluding individuals that deserved recognition in the past, to including those individuals from diverse backgrounds who equally contributed to history, is beyond me.
I witnessed tonight, a man, whittle down a homosexual person to a topic, removing their humanity. "Homosexuals should only be discussed in a sex education class."
WHAT WHAT WHAT WHAT WHAT WHAT.
If that is something you think, or say, PLEASE, I beg you, please evaluate your own infatuation with another's sex life. See, the LGBTQ community just wants to fucking live their lives. It shouldn't be a controversy to love who you want to love. HONESTLY THOUGH. This is what you spend your time fighting?
Think about this. Of all the things going on in this world... poverty, child trafficking, starvation, war, racism... your battle is determining whether who someone loves is a sin or not?
That is a genuine question. Let it sit. I'm so serious right now. Sit on it and reflect if that's the bone you're picking.
A person, who happens to also be homosexual, is not relegated or diminshed to a topic you get to vote on. They're not a fucking science project. Didn't Jesus teach you a lick about loving thy neighbor, love and tolerance? A person is a person is a person is a person, first and foremost and HOW DARE YOU diminish them to an "it" and a "topic" to be touched upon as a lesson. How dare you.
Now, let's pause for a moment.
If you aren't familiar with me, or my writing, you may not know that perhaps I used to think like you.
Conejo Valley born and raised. What, what! YUP. It's true! I was raised in a middle-class Jaysus-loving, white, privileged, CONSERVATIVE family. So, like you, growing up, anytime someone said something that should have been enlightening, I was like OMGGGGGGGG, they're attacking my morals! Someone disagreed with me! They must be a bully! Someone said something I didn't like... they're attacking me for my faith. I'm the silent majority!! I must stand strong! Morals. Morals. Morals.
What good are morals if they make you treat everyone else around you as "less than?"
Good god. It makes me recoil.
And, I wasn't a bad person. I truly believed I was the nicest, bestest person ever! (I mean as long as you adhered to my idea of a perfect person of course). And, you're not a bad person. I just think you're ignorant. HOLD ON, HOLD ON. Don't make this a false victimhood about you. I was ignorant as well. I just didn't know it. No one had those tough conversations with me. No one challenged me to reflect on my need to control others' lives based on my very own set of "morals." No — I learned I wasn't the only buttercup in all the land when I traveled nationwide and interviewed literally hundreds of people for my job.
So yes, I was you. And then I realized it wasn't a badge of honor to claim false martyrdom and victimhood in relation to conversations regarding the rights I wished to withhold from minority groups.
Back to the topic at hand.
Do you still really believe that all of a sudden, a history lesson is going to become NOT age-appropriate and teach your kids how to be gay? Well, then stop reading because you actually might be a lost cause.
Now, in the meeting tonight, Betsy Connolly brought up an extremely valuable point.
We've been teaching children as young as kindergarten about family and family structure. Wives, husbands, cousins, aunts and uncles. It's the very first way kids are introduced to history, actually. So, to be blunt, they're introduced to the structure of one, traditional type of family.
What about ALL of the children that come from broken families, or families with one mom, or one dad, or two moms, or two dads? See, kids can understand when their family is NOT represented. And whether or not you want to admit it, the curriculum only "normalizes" one structure of family, even though we know this isn't real life... regardless of what we would prefer based on our "morals."
As an eloquent speaker tonight stated, YOU DON'T GET TO MONOPOLIZE FAMILY VALUES. All families of all sizes, colors, ethnicities, sexualities, races, disabilities and beyond can have family values. You don't get to own that phrase as though you're part of the elite because of a religion. That's not the way it works, and it's also not reality.
Kids should learn about ALL families, not just the one you prefer based on your religious preference. If you want to shelter and censor your kid from real life, no one is holding you back from enrolling them in a private school that caters to your needs for censorship. But, DON'T think it's appropriate to censor public school policy because of your religion. Your religious preferences or faith don't get to undermine public education. I respect your right to have your faith... just don't shove it down my kid's throat. Sound familiar? I know.... because I'm sure that what you might have said about this fantasy "gay agenda."
I mean, fuck gay people for just wanting goddamned equal rights, right? How dare they demand this, and inclusivity so brazenly! It's like they're suffocating me and my right to hate with their equality demands UGGGGG.
You don't think it's controversial for your children to see a heterosexual couple holding hands or kissing. It's not any less appropriate for a gay couple to behave similarly. Stop fooling yourself.
Did you know tonight that someone who is heterosexual tried to insist that the gay lifestyle is a CHOICE unless it can be otherwise proved by a blood test? THAT'S RICH CONSIDERING THIS SAME MAN... a self-proclaimed white, christian conservative who pretended he was the victim at the meeting ALSO BELIEVES IN GOD. SO TELL ME.... WHERE IS THE PROOF GOD EXISTS???????? IS THERE A BLOOD TEST FOR THAT? No? We're just supposed to believe it? Ok dude. Tell me more about how you've decided for other people what is and isn't a choice based on a blood test. Also, where's your heterosexuality blood test?
But, then the most horrifying story of the night. I'm so serious, this was a legit horrifying story.
A woman came up — a teacher — who told us about a conversation she had with her two students... both girls. One of the girls wanted to be called Jake, and asked to be referred to as he/him/his moving forward. This woman then went on to inform the audience that she flat out denied his sexuality to him. She proudly boasted that she said to Jake: No, I will not do that. My religion is against that! -- and then went on to lecture everyone about how respectful she was and asked why we all couldn't be the same.
SHE LITERALLY FUCKING DENIED SOMEONE OF THEIR SEXUALITY, DISRESPECTED IT, and then wanted to be a walking example, to be applauded, for her approach.
I'M NOT MAKING THIS UP.
That was followed by a young gal, who complained about how it was distracting to her to have to be respectful to someone because of their sexuality. Also not kidding. See, it was hard for her to just be a kind, decent, tolerant person while learning 2+2, she informed us, thus highlighting the very fucking reason this inclusion is important.
We talk a lot about bullying. People bully those who they fear. Those who they are uncomfortable with. Those who they don't understand.
As a graduate of NPHS drove home so eloquently .... I don't trust you to teach your children love and acceptance at home. She brought up her experience... forming the Gay and Straight Alliance at NPHS. Within seconds of doing so and launching the group's banner, she and her friend were bombarded with sexually aggressive comments so severe that the school administration had to step in. Her point: These people didn't learn that at school. They learned it at home.
We need inclusive education if not to teach acceptance of diversity.
Your kid isn't going to be taught about gay sex. Your kid isn't going to become gay because they're exposed to the reality of our world... you know, the one where people that are gay, people, in our community, ACTUALLY EXIST.
And if that's the bone you pick... I hope to hear you demanding a removal of ALL mention of all families. I mean, afterall, apparently we can't talk about people without describing what they do in the bedroom, right?
Stop pretending you're a martyr for your cause. Stop pretending you're standing up for your faith.
The FAIR Education Act isn't about you. And it's certainly not about your right to indoctrinate your kids in whichever way you choose to do.
It's about embracing and incorporating the individuals that have made impactful contributions to our history who deserve recognition and their due place, and have otherwise, in the past, been excluded because of their disability, race or sexuality. It's not a sexual lesson. Stop it.
Morning edit: I would like to add that there were many amazing, well-spoken and compassionate speakers last night, of all ages and religions and backgrounds that encouraged kindness and explained the need for diversity and acceptance. There were a lot of disheartening comments, but what far outweighed those were the speeches of brave individuals who looked those in the eye that would deny them their place and their existence.
1/18/2017 08:53:00 am
Seriously, this is one of the best and most insightful opinions on the topic. Your choice to publish your thoughts is very admirable and very appreciated.
1/18/2017 11:24:16 am
Thanks for the nice comment, Mike. I know this is a very heated topic, but it frustrates me to no end that people in our community paint minority groups of people, such as the LGBTQ+ community, for example, essentially as controversial circus acts that require delicate conversation with their children. They're people. It's simple. If you stopped focusing so much on who they're sleeping with, it wouldn't matter to begin with.
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