Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Which Is It?

The Ex-Recall blog seems to be trying to say something about the fact that we signed a letter with 140+ other groups, complaining about a government web site that gives biased information to parents who need to talk to their teens about sex, an abstinence-only web site put up by the United States government to keep people from discussing contraception with their children.

You're damn right we're against that. We're TeachTheFacts.org, and we are absolutely opposed to the propagation of ignorance by the government, through non-informational websites or through the public schools.

We oppose it, actively.

And we're not the only ones who are drawn into this battle.

Scientists are drawn into the battle (more on that later, if I have time), pro-choice groups are drawn into the battle, gay advocacy groups are drawn into it, health educators are drawn into it. Something very bad is happening in America -- the imposition of narrow religious beliefs on our free way of life -- and lots of people are getting involved to stop it. These guys put together a long list of signatures in one day to oppose the HHS web site, and we were proud to sign it.

There isn't much informational content in Ex-Recall's message, it looks like they're just continuing to "spread hate and fear," as their spokesman bragged of doing. They make some mention of "pro abortion groups," but I don't believe anybody who signed that letter was "pro abortion" (any more than groups who opposed Prohibition in the 1930s were "pro alcoholism"). Listen to this:
No, the only agenda is the one that the pro abortion groups want to instill in every young teenager -- that sex for kids is ok, in fact its to be encouraged and that for backup -- after that condom fails ... the abortion and STD clinics at Planned Parenthood are right down the street.

Now, I do have a question here. I really wish I could be a fly on the wall and hear these guys talking about this. I wonder: are they so ignorant that they think that we, or any of the groups signing that letter, really believe "that sex for kids is ok, in fact its to be encouraged," or are they flat-out lying?

Ignorant, or liars, which is it?

I would love to have heard the conversation. Maybe at their Ex-Recall meeting, somebody said "Duh, hey, looky here, some o' these groups are them-there baby-killers, I betcha them TeachTheFacts fellers is baby-killers, too." Or was it, "Okay everybody, here's the strategy -- let's say that TeachTheFacts and those other people that signed that letter really want kids to have sex, OK? Hey, no, even better -- yeah, that's the ticket -- let's tell everybody that TeachTheFacts thinks kids should be encouraged to have sex, and then the children can just go down the street and get abortions if they get pregnant. You think people will buy that?"

I really wonder which one it is. Is Montgomery County under attack by fools, or liars?


Blogger andrea said...

Fools or Liars- I would say maybe half and half.


April 12, 2005 1:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I disagree - I think it is 100% liars -- you.

April 16, 2005 7:53 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

OK, Anon, thanks for explaining that. I think everybody sees the picture much clearer now.

April 17, 2005 9:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're very welcome, Jim!

April 18, 2005 10:18 AM  
Blogger War Diaries said...

As much as you and all teh anonymous insist TTF.org slurs religious folks, if you only knew who are part of TTF.org you wouldn't be saying that. We don't slur religiosity, we slur, without any apologies, the intention of some, religious or not, to impose to prevent OUR children from learning things we agree with - and even things the CDC seems to agree with-, instead of just preventing their own kids to learn it, if that's what they chose.
Besides, do you think that southern and religious folks suffer from discrimination, and very specific instances of difficulties for daily living things -such as health insurance benefits, decision making for their partners, etc.- like the gay folks do?
You wouldn't dare to say of black people what you say of gays, although, in fact, is much of the same that has been said of blacks before -and it is said still behind closed doors-.
Since you are so participatory, why don't we move to discuss the actual curriculum stuff? For instance, in the same post you took issue with, there were several points that would merit discussion, and so people will see exactly what you and us oppose and defend. We could do that at the Ex-Recall website, but there is no comment section there.

April 19, 2005 6:29 AM  
Blogger JimK said...

Let's stay a little closer to the facts. Looking at the Board of Education's report -- that is, the outline of everything that is included in the curriculum, here are the only uses of the word "religion:"

Under How to develop relationships and share equally it says, "5. accept individual differences (e.g. ethnicity, religion, sexual identity, etc.)"

One section says: Possible Affects of Religious Beliefs
1. cannot marry outside the religion
2. children must be raised in the same religion
3. different religions take different stands on sexual behaviors and there are even different views among people of the same religion

And under a section called Societal violence, it lists some things people get harassed about, including "v. Religion."

That's it.

The word "church" is found in association to some of the members of the citizens committee. No "synagogue," no "Jesus," no "Allah."

And the word "sin" is not in there, either, despite what you say.

Nothing tells the teacher to refer kids to anything outside their religion, that's silly.


April 19, 2005 4:55 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Theresa, you know as well as I do that "teachers' resources" are not things to tell the students, but are only background information for the teachers. So when you say the new curriculum tells the teachers to refer kids to a religous group outside of whatever their particular beliefs might be... you are incorrect -- and not just wrong, you are clearly trying to twist the details to put this in the worst possible light. When you say it suggests that if the teachers get questions on whether homosexuality is a SIN (a religous concept) that they should quote the Anglican church of Canada... -- there may be a teacher resource that says that or any other thing, but that doesn't go into the classroom, it's just so the teachers have some background. It's not part of the health class, and you know that. At least I assume you have looked over the materials.

If this curriculum were really so terrible, I'd think you guys wouldn't have to make stuff up.

April 20, 2005 3:04 PM  
Blogger JimK said...


All these things are teachers' resources. I don't know the exact definition of how they get used, but these are not things that are taught in the class! These things are for teachers to read privately, so they have some understanding of the issues, and how to deal with hard questions, and hard situations.

It looks like perhaps MCPS issued their revisions partly to clarify this issue. These resources do not seem to be listed in the new documents. I guess it was just too much for some people to comprehend, that teachers need to learn, too.

And as for your long passage about freedom of religion, I wonder, did you mean to include that? Was it supposed to be pertinent to the discussion we've been having here?

April 20, 2005 5:06 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Theresa, the MCPS position is consistent with all the mental health, counseling, and psychotherapy professionals. Nobody really believes that "people who used to be gay" are a significant part of the population, do they? Do you know anybody who fits that description? Of course not, unless it's somebody eating at the PFOX trough.

Have you ever watched a kid grow up gay? I have. They don't choose it, it's just how they are. PFOX's crazy beliefs have no place in a public school curriculum, or any place that values truth. A person can choose to engage in homosexual behaviors, for instance, guys in prison, but sexual orientation is not a choice, even your spokesman Peter Sprigg agrees, they don't seem to choose it -- even your group's letter threatening to sue the school board admits this fact.

April 20, 2005 8:15 PM  

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