Don’t say gay! Or any of the other initials in LGBTQIA! Because heterosexuality is all there is!

13 03 2009

Tennessee State Sen. DeWayne Bunch and Rep. Stacey Campfield have introduced Bill SB 1250 / HB 0821 which will be voted on next week. The bill “prohibits the teaching of or furnishing of materials on human sexuality other than heterosexuality in public school grades K-8.” This bill was proposed last year but failed.

Correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t education about uncovering and spreading knowledge and information? It’s supposed to be a tool to fight ignorance and help prepare individuals to be open-minded and socially-conscious citizens in a diverse society. While some may dismiss this bill and its implications as a strictly LGBTQ issue, it is a societal issue that concerns everyone.

Teaching that heterosexuality is the only expression of human sexuality alienates children who come from families where heterosexuality is not the norm. It will make them feel like there is something wrong with them or their families and can result in a range of emotions from confusion, shame, guilt, fear and depression. Meanwhile children who are raised in heterosexual families where sexuality is not discussed will grow up to view LGBTQ individuals as deviant and not “normal.” Failing to educate about other sexual orientations can breed homophobia and transphobia.

Reinforcing heterosexism in education will not promote the growth of more patriarchal, nuclear families. Nor will it reduce the divorce rate in this country. It will, on the other hand, reaffirm the marginalization of the LGBTQ community. Because all forms of oppressions, all of the isms, are interconnected and function together to maintain the status quo, being intentionally homophobic is also being by default sexist, racist, classist, ableist, etc. If we find it acceptable to exclude one group in the community what will stop you from finding it acceptable to exclude more and more groups in the community?

If we cannot rely on education to enlighten our children and prepare them to be socially-conscious and socially-responsible citizens, then what can we rely on? Talking about sex and sexuality with one’s children is not exactly the easiest or most un-awkward thing for a parent to do. And even if children talk to their parents about such issues at home, if they go to school and are only taught about heterosexuality then that will negate what they’ve learned at home.

This is absolutely ridiculous and goes to show how desperately the state tries to police sexuality and impose heterosexuality (the supposed only sexuality that exists) on children. Not to mention the censorship and exclusion of LGBTQ related information, media, etc.



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