By Linda P. Harvey
Let's say you're a high school principal in Anytown, USA, and some students have come to you asking to form a "gay" club. Since roughly 3,000 such clubs have been formed in the past decade in American high schools(and a few middle schools), it's certainly not revolutionary, they tell you. You start to think, yes, this might be a workable idea. After all, these are students who are more prone to being discriminated against, and this would raise their self-esteem.
But wait. This administrator needs to slow way down, and think. We are talking here about homosexuality---not the debate team. Most or all the students who want to form this group have homosexual desires and are willing to participate in the behaviors involved in homosexuality, behaviors commonly associated with serious diseases like AIDS. In fact, in the weirdest of ironies, there is a high probability that currently at Anytown High, there is money being spent to fund a health education program warning about the dangers of HIV, and its associated high-risk behaviors. And now the school may sponsor a club that will imply those behaviors acceptable?
Those at highest risk of HIV are males who participate in, well, anal sex, to be blunt. It's a practice engaged in by roughly three-fourths of homosexual males.
So how in the world can any high school justify a club that considers homosexual behavior a respectable option? That brings homosexually-inclined teens together, as well as older advisors, for social activities? That allows teens to reinforce one another in their inclinations---inclinations that may result in early death? And imply to all the other school's students that it's an acceptable option? Why aren't more school administrators seeing the hypocrisy-no, lunacy --of indulging these groups?
A smoking club or maybe and anorexia would make more sense.
But the issue goes way beyond health. In today's climate, a school not only encourages risky, unhealthy behavior by allowing a homosexuality club, but also fosters a climate of tension and division. This is because of what homosexual clubs-or "gay/straight alliances," as they are often called-will spend their time exploring. Here's what goes on in such groups, and some of the ramifications:
* Misinformation about homosexuality will be learned. Uniformly supportive, it will reinforce the homosexual desires of vulnerable teens, without any authentic exploration of what has prompted these desires. Genetic origins will be firmly claimed without a scintilla of supporting scientific evidence (since there is none). This dangerous brainwashing of at-risk teens-some of whom are there simply as "questioners"-- is to have the aegis of school support. Liability issues are just lurking to be discovered.
* Their "rights" to "be who they are"----i.e., to participate in homosexual behavior-will be constantly reinforced. These "rights" will increasingly be defined as they want, until adults put on the brakes. Short of that, what happens in the school environment to the rights to others to practice freedom of religion and freedom of speech (not including, of course, genuine harassment or threats)? What about privacy rights-like, the right of straight students not to be openly ogled in the shower after gym class?
* The group will dwell on what they believe constitutes harassment or discrimination by other students or teachers. Yes, there is unkind name-calling and even worse in high schools, but schools already have policies to deal with real problems. What these students will do through a club is to seek ways to manipulate the problem of unkindness, into a solution that affirms homosexuality. So, having sealed their decisions to "be who they are," and being immature adolescents anyway, this group's interpretation of harassment can range from extreme sensitivity about natural and commonplace disapproval of homosexuality by other teens, to rage when a "straight" teen swiftly and angrily rejects homosexual advances. And, depending on the limits set by the school, what this groups feels is harassment may be the standard adopted.
* Activist training will have a fertile field. Regional conferences will be attended by the club members and adult advisors. A slight can become a potential lawsuit, because these teens, and often their sympathetic parents, will know about the resources at their disposal through ACLU,Lambda Legal Defense Fund, GLSEN, and other national, well-funded groups. Suspicion and a victim mentality are developed in already emotionally-challenged teens, and an explosive and costly situation will be in the making.
* Traditional religions that disapprove of homosexuality will be regularly and soundly trashed. The intolerance coming out of the adult pro-homosexual lobby is implanted here, and a mindset of animosity is created. "Gay" clubs, by perpetuating myths, help to fuel division, not eliminate it. These kids are told that "homophobia" must be "eliminated." Eliminated? These kids will be taught that, way beyond actual violence, they have the moral right to silence ordinary disapproval and to become incensed at anyone's distaste for the lifestyle. Think of the many people who have well-founded objections to homosexuality. Is such a club's attack-dog hostility something anyone wants unleashed in their school?
* Homosexual clubs will embrace the idea that cross-dressing or even sex change surgery are defensible activities for teens. Transgendered rights are going to include--get ready, school boards--the right to define one's own gender; to use whichever bathroom or shower one wants; or attend whichever gym class or be on whatever sports team one wishes. To not see reality as these individuals see it will be, again, "discrimination."
ready, school boards-the right to define one's own gender; to use whichever bathroom or shower one wants; or attend whichever gym class or be on whatever sports team one wishes. To not see reality as these individuals see it will be, again, "discrimination."
* Social activities will be planned for homosexual teens--and their adult advisors. So their defense will be that the prom is a dating activity for heterosexuals-why not something for homosexuals? But homosexuality is high risk. Vastly higher percentages of kids die early from the practices associated with it. Fifty percent of all newly- reported HIV infections are found in people under 25.1 If the school or your state has an abstinence education policy, all the more ammunition. How can a school sanction both simultaneously? Take a look at just a few of the recommended reading selections by pro-homosexual groups P-FLAG or GLSEN -often filled with graphic sex between teens-- and it will be easy to prove how abstinence is hardly being encouraged or promoted.
But This is "Who We Are!"
Throughout the debate will rage a continual cry---that this is an identity issue, not a sexual practices issue. When that claim is raised, tell them you will seriously consider their claim if they can bring you even one article that shows conclusive evidence for a biological origin for homosexuality. Ask for the location of the nearest genetic testing site for homosexuality. We are not being flip-- just trying to show the quicksand of a pro-homosexual defense. If you stand your ground, you will find that they will not be able to produce such evidence. If an honest debate can be the result, some eyes and minds may be opened in the process.
Without that underlying claim, "discrimination" on the basis of "sexual orientation" falls apart as public policy, at the national, state and school board level. It really comes down to just allowing certain sexual practices, or not. Like sodomy laws. This is why they were in place to begin with, because historic evidence has shown that homosexuals are not different humans. They are heterosexually constructed like everyone else. Societies had decided to discourage homosexual behavior, and we need to do so again, while at the same time trying to help those struggling.
Homosexual desire violates something foundational in humans, and the truth about its origins is something that these kids really need and deserve to hear.
Common Rationale for "Gay" Clubs
When students present a club proposal, they usually have support and advice from an adult organization. Check out the Lambda Legal Defense Fund's web site at www.lambdalegal.org and you'll find all their best arguments for "gay" clubs. These arguments are, however, founded on myths, misinformation and/or the desire for political clout.
We aren't going to address all of the misleading claims here, but here are a few points to consider.
Some of the most frequently-cited reasons given for forming a "gay" club are that homosexual teens are at higher risk of suicide; have higher levels of depression; have more trouble in school, greater problems with drug and alcohol, and so on. These are generally troubled kids. But even though our hearts are saddened by the plight of such students, we must look with skepticism if the proposed solution is that these kids receive more social support for their homosexual behavior. It may be claimed that it is society's homophobia that causes all their problems.
This is where we need to object. Homosexuals have some behavior patterns that show every indication of emotional problems.The more vulnerable students with chaotic backgrounds are thsoe most likey to be attracted to the behavior, sadly.
The presumption of homophobia as the underlying issue needs to be challenged, because it takes one down a road that has no end to demands. It's also demonstrably untrue and prevents kids from getting real help to understand their self-destructive feelings. When teens have homosexual desire, it is a symptom, not an identity. The desire stems from emotional issues, and these same factors may also be responsible for these students' frequent history of school problems, the substance abuse, depression, and so on. If these issues remain unresolved and the teen enters the lifestyle, the pattern of high risk behavior continues. Only this explanation accounts for:
* The anonymous sexual encounters characteristic of homosexuals, the high-risk sex practices, the numerous partners, and the substances needed to cope with it all;
* The suicidal tendencies that don't diminish in communities of acceptance, nor with age and "well-adjustment" within the homosexual community;
* The millions of dollars spent on pointless education about condoms and safe sex don't seem to change the behaviors of most homosexuals;
* High rates of domestic violence characteristic of homosexual live-in relationships.
Drawing kids into a homosexual club, for all these reasons, is the last thing these teens need. They need family and individual counseling, and they need to be told in no uncertain terms the course they are on if they don't reject the idea that they are "gay". No one is born homosexual. These desires are created---not inborn.
There is hope, because many people have overcome homosexual desire. For much more information on this, as well as the stories of young people who are ex-homosexuals, see the Exodus Youth web site at www.exodusyouth.net .
The wise high school principal is one who will know that a "gay" club involves health decisions, as well as decisions about competing rights. Ultimately, it is a moral decision. A stand will have to be taken. A "gay" club is not a position of neutrality, but a slap in the face to health, to morality and really, to the kids.
Affirming homosexuality, in a club or elsewhere, will result in the rapid demoralization of the school, and a possible increase in experimental homosexual behavior by students. The most educationally-supportive parents will flee with their families. Few responsible parents want their kids to be subjected to increasingly empowered "gay" students in the classroom, the gym, or in a dark hallway. Remaining will be left-wing ideologues willing to subject their children to social experiments, and parents who are indifferent, to school levies as well as other involvement. Neither makes for a stable yet growing school system.
1. HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report, Centers for Disease Control, June 1998, 10 (1).
Resources on Homosexuality
Causes / "Gene" Question
Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth, Jeffrey Satinover, MD, Baker Books, 1996.
My Genes Made Me Do It, Neil & Briar Whitehead, Huntington House, 1999.
Web sites: www.narth.com
Straight & Narrow? Compassion & Clarity in the Homosexuality Debate, Thomas E. Schmidt, InterVarsity Press,1995.
Legislating Morality: The Homosexual Movement Comes Out of the Closet, George Grant, Mark A. Horne, Moody Press/Legacy Communications,1993.
Web sites: www.cwfa.org
Web Sites: www.exodus.to
Schools / Public Policy
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