Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger of California made waves recently by signing SB 1441 into law. The law requires organizations receiving public funds to add “sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of protected classifications for the purposes of this provision.” (It seems only fair that if the people are paying taxes funding the services, that they be allowed to participate, or to be eligible for services.)
Some groups in California, have labeled this legislation ‘anti-family’ although it is to be assumed that the people who will benefit from the legislation have, at some point, been affiliated with a family, or are currently part of a family. I hope that in the United States the benefitees of this legislation aren’t all orphans who have raised themselves in alleyways, or are children dumped in rural fields like so many unwanted pregnant cats. How can the legislation be anti-family if the people it benefits live in families? But, my irritation at people ‘speaking in code’ is causing me to digress.
Some of the groups who see this legislation as a negative development have formed groups to encourage families to remove their children from public schools as a way of protesting the legislation.
Agape Press, Tupelo, Mississippi, 5 September 2006, California’s Passage of Pro-Homosexual Bills Draws Pro-Family Backlash
Charles Lowers, director of Considering Homeschooling, says it is time for upset parents to take action. That is why he says his group is using California lawmakers’ recent passage of this series of pro-homosexual bills as “a wake-up call for Christian families who, despite everything else that has happened, are still sending their children to public school.”
[also picked up by many other news outlets]
And, one would assume again, that families of other religious persuasions are also affected in some way? Maybe Buddhist, Zoroastrian and Baha’i families?
A, slightly less strident, but still not too friendly, opinion was posted last May at Townhall.com. Apparently this is no flash-in-the-pan story.
Townhall.com, Arlington, Virginia, 30 May 2006, Suicide and the textbooks
I found six of the seven academic articles cited. Not a single one proved that harassment causes students to become suicidal. Some didnt even address the question of whether discrimination was to blame. Of the ones that did address the question, none came near showing a significant causal link. Most simply documented the higher rates of suicidal thoughts and plans and attempts among gay studentz. (sic) It is actually an open question whether the rates of actual suicide, as opposed to suicide attempts or fantasy, are greater for gay teens than for straight.
And so because the kids in the sexual-orientation-minority aren’t killing themselves at higher rates than their peers because of the bullying, there is no reason to raise awareness about how varieties of people exist, and have existed?
Despite all this, as an advocate for homeschooling I can’t tell people to homeschool because of legislative or curricular changes I might not like. People know about homeschooling, and they can choose it if they want to. If either the legislation or the curriculum does offend them, then, yes, by all means, do what you have to do. But proselytizing among public school families for homeschooling is like going to football games to recruit soccer fans: nervy.
There is one good reason I can think of connected to such changes for people to homeschool: when you’re homeschooling you don’t have to concern yourself about the changes from either side unless you want to — at least not as far as educating your kids is concerned. My conception of homeschooling isn’t about thumbing your nose at the choices made by other people, or forming useful voting blocs, it’s about having a grand adventure with your kids. If you wish, you can tune out the whole shooting match and go swimming.