Same-sex marriage and the school curriculum

Issues and Action in Education

An e-letter produced by EdWatch, a nonprofit organization.

April 11, 2005

Same-sex marriage and the school curriculum

Legislators tell us that proponents of same-sex marriage, when asked if students have the right to believe that homosexuality is morally wrong, will universally say no, students do not have the right to that belief. The school, they say, is responsible for training students that such a moral belief is bigoted and hateful.

Parents must consider the serious implications of this position for our children and for the schools. The March 28th issue of National Review magazine features an article by David Frum entitled, "A New Word, A New Day," in which he describes a concept that will take hold in school curriculi everywhere if same-sex marriage becomes the law of the land. The concept is called "Hetero-normative," and it means that words are homophobic if they imply "that standard sexual relationships are only between males and females."

For example, a controversy raged last February when a Harvard speaker described her life this way: "Women, you can have it all -- a loving man, devoted husband, loving children, a fabulous career. They say you gotta choose. Nah, nah, nah... You can do whatever you want. All you have to do is want it."

The gay and lesbian groups filed a complaint because "the content was specific to male-female relationships." Similarly, the governor of Massachusetts was chastised by the Boston Globe for "mean spirited politics" when he stated that every child "has a right to a mother and a father." Praise for the traditional family is bigoted in the new world of gender-free marriages.

Frum makes the point that "same-sex marriage does not extend marriage. It transforms marriage." Husbands and wives, mothers and fathers will be required to be removed as concepts from law -- for every citizen, not merely for homosexuals.

Where do these ideas lead us? Frum tells us: "This is not a debate about extending an institution; it is a debate about overthrowing a norm; not about reconstruction, but about destruction." This is what schools will be required to teach our kids -- that hetero-normative language is hate-speech.

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