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Old 04-01-2005, 04:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Are They Turning the U.S.into the fundamentalist christian republic of America?

Welcome to the fundamentalist christian republic of the united states.
Is this how you want your tax dollars to be used? Do you want the "education" in "Health, Education, and Welfare - HEW" to be religious
influenced moralizing? Well......you got it !!!
Quote:
<a href="http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/politics/wire/sns-ap-government-sex-talk,1,3540535.story?">http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/politics/wire/sns-ap-government-sex-talk,1,3540535.story?</a>
7:33 AM PST, April 1, 2005

<b>Government Abstinence Web Site Draws Ire</b>

By KEVIN FREKING, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON An array of advocacy groups are calling on the federal government to take down one of its new Web sites, saying it presents biased and inaccurate advice to parents on how to talk to their children about sex.

The site -- 4parents.gov -- stresses the promotion of abstinence.

Emphasizing abstinence is fine, said the groups, but the government also should stress the need for contraception if sexual relations do occur.

"There's this misconception that giving young people negative information about contraception will encourage them not to have sexual intercourse, when all it will do is encourage them not to have contraception, so the strategy backfires," Monica Rodriguez, an official at the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States, said Thursday.

The council, which also provides sex education materials, sent a letter addressing its concerns to Michael Leavitt, secretary of the Health and Human Services Department. More than 100 organizations, primarily liberal advocacy groups, signed on, including the American Civil Liberties Union, the Human Rights Campaign and Planned Parenthood.

Leavitt said in a statement unveiling the site last week that it was designed for parents who are embarrassed about talking with their children about sex.

"Parents have a tremendous amount of influence on their children and we want them to talk with their teens about abstinence so that they can stay safe and healthy," he said.

HHS officials said Thursday evening they were not surprised certain groups disliked the site.

"They've always opposed us on the issue of abstinence. That's fine," HHS spokesman Bill Pierce said. "One thing we do know about abstinence is that if you practice it, you will not have an unintended pregnancy or risk catching a sexually transmitted disease."

The site advises parents to tell their teens why they should not have sex: "Tell them abstinence is the healthiest choice. They will not have to worry about getting pregnant or getting someone pregnant. They will not have to worry about sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS. Nor will they have to worry that the person they are dating is only interested in them because of sex. "

The Human Rights Campaign said it was particularly concerned about sections of the Web site that focus on sexual orientation. The group works for equal rights for gays, lesbians and bisexuals.

The site says: "If you believe your adolescent may be gay, or is experiencing difficulties with gender identity or sexual orientation issues, consider seeing a family therapist who shares your values to clarify and work through these issues."

Joe Solmonese, president of the Human Rights Campaign, said in a separate letter to Leavitt, that describing sexual orientation as an "alternative lifestyle" is outdated and inaccurate language that can alienate youth at a time when they are particularly vulnerable.

"By terming sexual orientation a 'lifestyle,' HHS is discussing it as a matter of choice, which is contrary to the vast majority of scientific evidence. Sexual orientation is not a lifestyle," Solmonese said.

The site describes condoms as imperfect, saying they can break or be used incorrectly, and it includes a chart of whether a condom protects a little, some, or a lot, against various sexually transmitted diseases.

Patrick Fagan, a research fellow at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, said the Web site's information about condoms looked accurate.

"This is standard, straightforward research on the effectiveness of condoms," he said.

Fagan also said the Web site would be useful for parents of gays and lesbians. He said they deserved to get the same information made available to parents of heterosexual children.

"Teenagers involved in homosexual acts ... are worth the same transmission of information on the effectiveness of condoms and on the dangers of sexually transmitted diseases," he said.
* __

On the Net:

HHS' sex talk site: http://www.4parents.gov

Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States: http://www.siecus.org
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Old 04-01-2005, 04:22 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm afraid my tax dollars are already being used for much more sinister purposes in places like Iraq, Cuba and the Nevada desert.

Last edited by Coppertop; 04-01-2005 at 04:22 PM.. Reason: bleah
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Old 04-01-2005, 04:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I'm more upset about the fact that even our government is now of a mind to allow parents to pass the buck onto somebody else rather than fulfilling their responsibility and obligations!

They're YOUR children, YOU take care of them, if you leave it to someone else you're not going to like what they learn, I can almost guarantee it.
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Old 04-01-2005, 06:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I wish that it weren't the case, but the fundies are destroying everything good about this country. My wife and I starting to look at each other and wonder where else in the world we could move to and be happy.

As I have said before, "Oh Lord, save me from your followers!"
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Old 04-01-2005, 10:19 PM   #5 (permalink)
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...well shit guys, give him some suggestions.
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Old 04-01-2005, 10:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Why are the most politically active Christians are fundamentalist extreemists? I am a Christian. I want Bush impeached. I believe that homosexuals should be treated as equals in every way. If I tried to enter the religious political arena, I would be laughed out of the building (or whereever I am). The most I can expect is president of the congregation in some random church or mayeb an elder. In order to be taken as an accurate representative iun the church, you have to become a pastor and become indoctronated by other conservative fundamentalists. Then you get noticed by being slightly more fundamentalist than the average pastor. Then you write for a fundamentalist publishing company (maybe CPH or something). Then you say something really extreme, like all gays should be either forced into therepy or killed. Now you can control the president.
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Old 04-01-2005, 11:40 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by braisler
I wish that it weren't the case, but the fundies are destroying everything good about this country. My wife and I starting to look at each other and wonder where else in the world we could move to and be happy.

As I have said before, "Oh Lord, save me from your followers!"

As soon as our kids are out of the house, we are moving to Canada. No bullshit.
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Old 04-02-2005, 03:03 AM   #8 (permalink)
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"...Leavitt said in a statement unveiling the site last week that it was designed for parents who are embarrassed about talking with their children about sex."

It's sad that there are people like that. They weren't too embarrassed to fuck and make babies. Now they need a website to disseminate bad information to their offspring, who will breed more even more sexually repressed individuals. It spirals out of control.
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Old 04-02-2005, 05:00 AM   #9 (permalink)
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How is absistence now a Christian fundamentalist belief? Last time I checked, it was the only method guarenteed to prevent pregnancy and STDs. Sure, placing condoms on cucumbers is loads of fun, but it also sends mixed messages to our children. Stressing abstinence is the best method of protecting our children for unwanted pregs. and STDs.

Also, why is the left so defiant about stressing abstinence education. I just don't get it.
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Old 04-02-2005, 06:27 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCB
How is absistence now a Christian fundamentalist belief? Last time I checked, it was the only method guarenteed to prevent pregnancy and STDs. Sure, placing condoms on cucumbers is loads of fun, but it also sends mixed messages to our children. Stressing abstinence is the best method of protecting our children for unwanted pregs. and STDs.

Also, why is the left so defiant about stressing abstinence education. I just don't get it.
Abstinence is indeed the only method that ensures no risk of pregnancy or STDs. However, teaching abstinence and only abstinence is NOT the best method of protecting our children -- it has been shown to be tremendously unsuccessful. Children who are taught abstinence only are much more likely NOT to use any form of protection when do have sex, and I think you know that. The "left" is not defiant about...argh, god, why am I bothering.
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Old 04-02-2005, 07:33 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCB
How is absistence now a Christian fundamentalist belief? Last time I checked, it was the only method guarenteed to prevent pregnancy and STDs. Sure, placing condoms on cucumbers is loads of fun, but it also sends mixed messages to our children. Stressing abstinence is the best method of protecting our children for unwanted pregs. and STDs.

Also, why is the left so defiant about stressing abstinence education. I just don't get it.

Abstinence is not just a christian fundamentalist belief, unless it is the only method to prevent pregnancy and std's that is discussed. When you stress that abstinence is the only method or only point out the bad points in the other methods, then you are trying to pass on fundamental beliefs.

The fact remains, with or without this abstinence discussion, there have always been and will always be kids out there that are having sex. If you continue to close your eyes to that, you are a sad, sad person.
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Old 04-02-2005, 08:39 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by host
Welcome to the fundamentalist christian republic of the united states.
Is this how you want your tax dollars to be used? Do you want the "education" in "Health, Education, and Welfare - HEW" to be religious
influenced moralizing? Well......you got it !!!
This is not a fundamentalist christian idea. I think it's a little off base to call it that. The best way to prevent stds and unwanted pregnancy is abstinence.
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Old 04-02-2005, 09:53 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Yes but it's also the most unrealistic way to prevent it. Kids are going to have sex, and lots of it.

On a funny side note, a study showed that kids who pledged abstinence until marriage were more likely to perform oral and anal sex. We're making our children do anal people.
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Old 04-02-2005, 03:41 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willravel
Why are the most politically active Christians are fundamentalist extreemists? I am a Christian. I want Bush impeached. I believe that homosexuals should be treated as equals in every way. If I tried to enter the religious political arena, I would be laughed out of the building (or whereever I am). The most I can expect is president of the congregation in some random church or mayeb an elder. In order to be taken as an accurate representative iun the church, you have to become a pastor and become indoctronated by other conservative fundamentalists. Then you get noticed by being slightly more fundamentalist than the average pastor. Then you write for a fundamentalist publishing company (maybe CPH or something). Then you say something really extreme, like all gays should be either forced into therepy or killed. Now you can control the president.
well, you could go through the process and then come out as less extreme but incredibly vocal voice for the christian community. it might just leave you howling at the wind, but it could also mobilize the non-fundamental christian community. you never know...
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Old 04-02-2005, 04:09 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hannukah harry
well, you could go through the process and then come out as less extreme but incredibly vocal voice for the christian community. it might just leave you howling at the wind, but it could also mobilize the non-fundamental christian community. you never know...
Well, I've considered that. The fact is that there are no real liberal (pro homosexuality, pro other religions, pro women preachers, etc.) voices coming from the church. Either no one is crazy enough to try it, or people have tried and failed. Either way, I'd have to devote my life to this, and to be honest I don't think I can do it. I don't come across as a srtong enough Christian (being that I moved away from Christianity propor a while ago).

The thing that really gets me mad is that most people are basically good. The problem is the doctrine and dogma that are hammered into everyone's skulls since their baptism (or what have you). My father is a good man. He was a Lutheran pastor for over 10 years. I had every anti-homosexual, no sex before marriage, pray before every meal, Jesus loves me story in me before I could form a rational thought of my own. As luck would have it, I was best friends with an Arab Muslim and a Jewish kid. If the three of us didn't have each other, we'd probably all be religious zombies, hating each other out of ignorance induced fear. We all had the benifit of realizing that we shouldn't hate other religions, we shouldn't assume our religion is the right one, and we shoudlnt' force our beliefs down other peoples throats. I was damned lucky to have these friends. I'm not better than anyone (except Carrot Top), I just happened to get my morality from different places. It's the common themes in different moralities that really shine through in the end.

I believe in God. I believe that God loves man. I belive that in the eyes of God, every man, woman, and child is created equally. I believe that the golden rule is God's greatest gift to mankind. This is getting too philosophical, getting back to the political aspect...

In order for someone like myself, a faithful liberal, to rise to power in a given religion, there needs to be a strong base of also liberal followers upon which to build the political power. There exists no such group that has any sort of influence. I'd be boring to them. Another flower smelling hippy with no connections with reality. I'd be there for them to ridicule and hate. "Those liberals are too cowardly to get anything done. Would that liberal have gone after Osama like Bush did?! Hell no! Those anti-freedom pegans will get theirs our way. The good christian way." Obviously that was an exaggeration, but that seems the general concensus. We need an atheist president, or at least a rpesident who knows that God's house is church, not the Whitehouse.

I'm going to live my life as a good, moral man. I'll go to non-violent, legal protests when I want to show my support for something. I'll only step up to the plate if no one else will.
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Old 04-02-2005, 04:12 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The_wall
Yes but it's also the most unrealistic way to prevent it. Kids are going to have sex, and lots of it.

On a funny side note, a study showed that kids who pledged abstinence until marriage were more likely to perform oral and anal sex. We're making our children do anal people.
yeah, while this makes me laugh, it's mostly because my mother of all people brought this up to me the other day. Even on the phone...well...it's a little odd.
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Old 04-02-2005, 06:02 PM   #17 (permalink)
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just think back to your high school days...abstinence is rather difficult. Instead why don't we give a balenced sex ed? You know...one that says you really shouldn't have sex, but if you do please use some protection! This is what happens when you don't use protection, (show disgusting picture of some poor dude who let w/e STD he got fester). The End.
:-D
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Old 04-02-2005, 09:10 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonjon42
just think back to your high school days...abstinence is rather difficult. Instead why don't we give a balenced sex ed? You know...one that says you really shouldn't have sex, but if you do please use some protection! This is what happens when you don't use protection, (show disgusting picture of some poor dude who let w/e STD he got fester). The End.
:-D
Because premarital sex is a mortal sin in the eyes of the fundamentalist... meaning you stand a very good chance at going to hell to suffer for all eternity if you lost your virginity out of wedlock. Practical solutions and comprimise are of no use to a fundamentalist when souls are on the line. Absolute morality only.

edit: I know not all fundamentalists feel compelled to legislate their morality. My post is referring to those militant few who try to convert the rest of us, not only through the bible.. but through our government.
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Old 04-03-2005, 04:11 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kadath
Abstinence is indeed the only method that ensures no risk of pregnancy or STDs. However, teaching abstinence and only abstinence is NOT the best method of protecting our children -- it has been shown to be tremendously unsuccessful. Children who are taught abstinence only are much more likely NOT to use any form of protection when do have sex, and I think you know that. The "left" is not defiant about...argh, god, why am I bothering.

So explain exactly just how you can successfully teach kids about condoms on cucumbers without undermining a program that stresses abstinence
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Old 04-03-2005, 04:59 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by NCB
So explain exactly just how you can successfully teach kids about condoms on cucumbers without undermining a program that stresses abstinence
Is "condoms on cucumbers" a phrase that gets you hot? I couldn't at first figure out why you used it twice. Then I googled the phrase. Imagine my complete lack of surprise when it turns out to be used by fundamentalists to attack sex education! You are clearly a person who understands the value of rhetoric. I want to thank you, though. In my googling I found out from The Light Party that HIV is NOT the cause of AIDS.
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Old 04-03-2005, 08:52 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kadath
Is "condoms on cucumbers" a phrase that gets you hot? I couldn't at first figure out why you used it twice. Then I googled the phrase. Imagine my complete lack of surprise when it turns out to be used by fundamentalists to attack sex education! You are clearly a person who understands the value of rhetoric. I want to thank you, though. In my googling I found out from The Light Party that HIV is NOT the cause of AIDS.
Owned!
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Old 04-03-2005, 11:07 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Honestly, my sex ed class in highschool was kinda like what was mentioned earlier, abstinence was the BEST, but if something was gonna happen, use protection..two forms if possible (condom and pill at the time if possible, as depo, nuvaring, norplant, etc were not widely used) and STDs were fairly highly stressed, as was the need to use a condom every single time all of hte time, etc as it only took one slipup.

at the time, i thought there was a bit of paranoia, but honestly, it instilled enough of a threat to 1, keep my mind on protection, 2, not sleep around with every lady possible, and 3, have a sex life that was safer than it would have been had i only been taught abstinence bc i know i still would have slept around..

oh, a google on "cucumbers on condoms" is pretty hilarious..
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Old 04-03-2005, 05:20 PM   #23 (permalink)
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[QUOTE=Kadath]Is "condoms on cucumbers" QUOTE]


Most of y'all are too young to remember, but when I was in school, that's what we actually did. Since I haven;t been in HS in a number of years, perhaps you, will, or some of the other boys can tall us what they use now.
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Old 04-03-2005, 10:54 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by willravel
I'm not better than anyone (except Carrot Top)...
I love that, no matter what, you can almost always shift the burden of ultimate loserdom to Carrot Top. He's a great punching bag.

For my $0.02- I don't now, nor have I ever been able to comprehend where people get off thinking that telling someone simply, "don't do it" is a viable deterrant to ANYTHING. It worked for Nancy Reagan and drugs [sarcasm] and it's REALLY working for reducing sexual activity in young people [also sarcasm].

You don't have to give the kids lessons in positions and fingering technique, but how about simply telling them, 1. the reasons why sex is dangerous, 2. how to best protect themselves.

I've always equated the "abstinence only" approach to trying to reduce car accidents by suggesting everyone just stay off the road, just because it's "the only way to be sure". Bullshit. Teach them the harsh reality of young pregnancy, STD's, and arm them with humankind's best weapon of all time: knowledge.
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Old 04-04-2005, 05:29 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Problem is, abstinence is only really expected of the female. The church turns a blind eye to men getting their rocks off before marriage. Abstinence is BS anyways, we are sexual creatures and sex should be a pleasurable part of everybody's life. Problem is, they (fundies) have made it into this demon-act of lust and sin which makes everybody overly curious and secretive of it.
As a female, I blame this abstinence-christian thing for my fear of sex in my youth. Not fear really, but more of "oh, I could NEVER." I regret not giving myself that opportunity to explore my sexuality before marriage.
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Old 05-29-2006, 12:36 AM   #26 (permalink)
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More signs of an emerging, U.S. Christian Republic:
Quote:
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationwo...173,full.story
'Ex-Gays' Seek a Say in Schools
In response to campus programs supporting homosexuality, critics call for offering an alternative view: that people can go straight.
By Stephanie Simon, Times Staff Writer
May 28, 2006

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. Over the last decade, gay-rights activists have pushed programs to support gay and lesbian students in public schools. Their success is striking:

More than 3,000 Gay-Straight Alliance clubs meet across the country. Nearly half a million students take a vow of silence one day each spring in an annual event to support gay rights. California may soon require textbooks to feature the contributions of gays and lesbians throughout history.

Critics, mostly on the religious right, view all this as promoting the "homosexual lifestyle." Unable to stop it, they have turned to a new strategy: demanding equal time for their view in public schools and on college campuses.

Conservative Christians and Jews have teamed up with men and women who call themselves "ex-gay" to lobby and even sue for the right to tell teenagers that they can "heal" themselves of unwanted same-sex attractions.

They argue that schools have an obligation to balance gay-pride themes with the message that gay and lesbian students can go straight through "reparative therapy." In this view, homosexuality is not a fixed or inborn trait but a symptom of emotional distress a disorder that can be cured.

Alan Chambers, a leading ex-gay activist, recalls how scared and depressed he felt when a high-school counselor advised him to deal with his attraction to other boys by accepting his homosexuality. He had no choice, she told him: He was gay. "It was very damaging," Chambers said. "I didn't want that. I hadn't chosen it."

His senior year, Chambers found his way to Exodus International, a network of groups that support ex-gays. He is now married to a woman, a father of two and the president of Exodus.

Mental-health professionals overwhelmingly warn against therapy to change sexual orientation, calling it ineffective and potentially harmful to patients' self-esteem. But ex-gays say they have managed to eliminate or reduce their pull to the same sex, though it often takes years of struggle.

"That's an important perspective," Chambers said. "If you're going to allow one side into the schools, you need to allow the other side, too. People want alternatives."

That rhetoric echoes the creationist campaigns of the 1980s and '90s: Just as conservative Christians demanded equal time for Genesis whenever Darwin got a mention, ex-gays and their allies are insisting on equal time for their views whenever homosexuality is discussed. Several ex-gay websites offer equal-time policies that parents can urge their local school boards to adopt.

Teachers, too, are beginning to raise the subject with their principals and in the classroom. "It's been our hottest issue over the last two years. Without a doubt," said Finn Laursen, executive director of the Christian Educators Assn. International, which represents 7,000 teachers, mostly from public schools.

Though the equal-time argument didn't work for creationists, ex-gays have begun to notch some successes.

A high school in New Hampshire invited ex-gay activist Aaron Shorey to present his story on Civil Rights Day last year. He told several standing-room-only classes that he refused to let his attraction to men define him as gay. "I have experienced change," he told them. "Change is possible." He's working with several other New England schools to get permission for similar presentations.

The ex-gay group Inqueery, based in Des Moines, has also sent speakers to public high schools, including one in Chicago this spring.

In Boulder, Colo., educators are considering including an ex-gay pamphlet in a resource guide to help teachers handle questions about sexuality. The pamphlet states that sexual identity is fluid and that conversion therapy can help some gays and lesbians overcome depression. The district in one of the most liberal cities in the country does not endorse that philosophy, but "we're a big believer in providing all viewpoints," spokeswoman Maela Moore said. "It would be negligent to omit."

The ex-gay movement's biggest victory came last year, when a federal judge sided with Parents and Friends of ExGays and Gays, or PFOX, in a lawsuit against a Maryland school district.

PFOX, a national advocacy group based in Alexandria, Va., had sued to block the district's new sex-education curriculum, arguing that its treatment of homosexuality was one-sided. The judge agreed that students should hear other perspectives, and PFOX took a seat on the committee charged with drafting new lesson plans.

Similar lawsuits may be filed soon. New Jersey-based JONAH Jews Offering New Alternatives to Homosexuality is seeking parents and students willing to sue to get the ex-gay view into schools. So is Liberty Counsel, a Christian law firm in Orlando, Fla. The firm joined PFOX last month in urging teens to form Gay to Straight Clubs and hang "Choose to Change" posters in their schools. If an administrator tries to censor that message, Liberty Counsel promises to provide legal backup.

Already this spring, the firm has threatened to take a Wisconsin high school to court for inviting a gay speaker but not an ex-gay to Diversity Day. (The school responded by canceling the program.) Liberty Counsel is also weighing action against colleges in Ohio and Connecticut after students said they were barred from putting ex-gay literature in the campus gay and lesbian centers.

The ex-gay movement considers same-sex attraction to be a gender-identity disorder, brought on by inadequate parenting, unmet emotional needs and, often, childhood sexual abuse.

Mainstream associations of psychiatrists and psychologists resoundingly reject that model, but the ex-gay movement promotes it through groups such as the National Assn. for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality. That group's president, psychologist Joseph Nicolosi, opened a recent conference for men and women seeking to overcome homosexuality with a ringing statement:

"There is no such thing as a homosexual. We are all heterosexual. Our body was designed for the opposite sex."

The audience of more than 700 sat rapt in the pews of a Fort Lauderdale church. Some held Bibles. Others took notes. Nicolosi went on to tell them that fathers could help their sons stay straight by bonding through rough-and-tumble games, such as tossing them in the air.

"Even if [the dad] drops the kid and he cracks his head, at least he'll be heterosexual," Nicolosi said, chuckling. "A small price to pay."

Critics say such comments reflect a deep homophobia and can devastate men and women trying to come to terms with their sexual orientation.

"There's a fine line between saying 'Change is possible, and I have changed' and saying 'Change is possible, and you better change because something's wrong with you,' " said Eliza Byard, deputy executive director of the nonprofit Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network.

Protesting the ex-gay conference in Florida, Jerry Stephenson said his three years in conversion therapy plunged him into despair and self-loathing. He could not break his attraction to men; ashamed of his weakness, he contemplated suicide. Today, Stephenson counsels others on accepting their homosexuality.

The idea of promoting conversion therapy in schools frightens him: "Let's save the children from this," Stephenson said. "All it does is bring oppression."

Even the most ardent champions of ex-gay therapy acknowledge that it's not always possible to banish unwanted attractions. Nicolosi says only one-third of his patients are ever "cured" and even then, "that doesn't mean they never have a homosexual thought or feeling again."

Embarrassing lapses have plagued the ex-gay movement: In the 1970s, two of the men who founded Exodus fell in love and left their wives to live together. In the 1980s, the founder of Homosexuals Anonymous was caught having sex with men who sought his help going straight. In 2000, a leading ex-gay speaker with Focus on the Family was photographed leaving a gay bar.

When Dr. Robert Spitzer, a psychiatrist at Columbia University, interviewed 200 people who had sought to change their sexual orientation, he concluded that many of them had succeeded and were happier for it. But many of his subjects for the 2001 study had been referred by or worked for ex-gay groups, and Spitzer relied entirely on their self-reporting of thoughts and desires. He now says that some of his subjects may have been deceiving themselves or lying to him.

"If some people can change and I think they can it's a pretty rare phenomenon," said Spitzer, a strong supporter of gay rights.

Promoting conversion therapy in schools, he added, may be giving teens "false hope."

Ex-gay activists, however, take heart from guidelines developed this spring to help educators around the country deal with clashing views on homosexuality.

Drafted by an unlikely coalition of gay activists and conservative Christians, the guidelines call for schools to open a respectful dialogue with all parties.

That doesn't necessarily mean all views deserve a place in the curriculum, said Charles Haynes, a 1st Amendment scholar who mediated the process. Educators must decide which perspectives are scientifically valid and which lessons will help their students grow.

But Haynes is adamant that the ex-gay community at least deserves a hearing.

"I can see where it might be offensive to some to say that ex-gays, or any other group with controversial views, should get a place at the table," he said. "But that's America. That's who we are, on our best days."
Public schools that allow "equal time" to a "reparative therapy" message from "ex-gay" speakers, would seem to be risking exposure to lawsuits for providing a forum, on school premises, for advocates of a practice that has been determined by a U.S. medical professional association as unsound and detrimental to mental health:
(Is a medical association of 36,000 member physicians, wrong??)
Quote:
http://www.psych.org/psych_pract/cop...endum83100.cfm
POSITION STATEMENT

COPP Position Statement on Therapies Focused on Attempts to Change Sexual Orientation (Reparative or Conversion Therapies)

Approved by the Board of Trustees March 2000

Approved by the Assembly May 2000
.........Recommendations:

1. <b>APA affirms its 1973 position that homosexuality per se is not a diagnosable mental disorder.</b> Recent publicized efforts to repathologize homosexuality by claiming that it can be cured are often guided not by rigorous scientific or psychiatric research, but sometimes by religious and political forces opposed to full civil rights for gay men and lesbians. APA recommends that the APA respond quickly and appropriately as a scientific organization when claims that homosexuality is a curable illness are made by political or religious groups.

2. As a general principle, a therapist should not determine the goal of treatment either coercively or through subtle influence. Psychotherapeutic modalities to convert or "repair" homosexuality are based on developmental theories whose scientific validity is questionable. Furthermore, anecdotal reports of "cures" are counterbalanced by anecdotal claims of psychological harm. In the last four decades, "reparative" therapists have not produced any rigorous scientific research to substantiate their claims of cure. Until there is such research available, <b>APA recommends that ethical practitioners refrain from attempts to change individuals' sexual orientation, keeping in mind the medical dictum to first, do no harm.</b>

3. The "reparative" therapy literature uses theories that make it difficult to formulate scientific selection criteria for their treatment modality. This literature not only ignores the impact of social stigma in motivating efforts to cure homosexuality; <b>it is a literature that actively stigmatizes homosexuality as well. "Reparative" therapy literature also tends to overstate the treatment's accomplishments while neglecting any potential risks to patients.</b> APA encourages and supports research in the NIMH and the academic research community to further determines "reparative" therapy's risks versus its benefits.....
The fact that any public schools in the U.S. even consider it appropriate to allow an "ex-gay" equal time, "reparative" therapy message to be delivered on school property, is a sign that, in some areas, a fundamentalist Christian influence is given at least "equal time". To expose students to this anti-scientific, mental health threatening therapy as an "alternative" or a "relief", seems to me to be an abusive practice on the part of some public school educators. Given the position of the dominate U.S. association of mental health physicians, which evolved carefully and thoughtfully over a 27 year period, what.....other than inappropriate influence of religion on the judgment of school administrators, would cause them to expose students to a mental and emotional health threatening message?
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Old 05-29-2006, 11:01 AM   #27 (permalink)
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I just can't seem to bring myself all up-in-arms about this. They want to stress abstinence and a lot of you don't. Well, so what? Is the government going to teach your kids how to act, or are you?
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Old 05-29-2006, 11:33 AM   #28 (permalink)
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I just can't seem to bring myself all up-in-arms about this. They want to stress abstinence and a lot of you don't. Well, so what? Is the government going to teach your kids how to act, or are you?
No...they are exposing public school students in some areas of the country, and they want to increase the number of areas.....to an option of "reparative therapy", that the medical community of menatl health physicians has stated prominently....is not "reparative" and is not "therapy"....and that is a specifically "unhealthy" to perform on people.....especially on emotionally vulnerable students.

Can you think of another instance where public school administrators would permit this to happen? It seems like religious influenced child abuse, to me. It seems to me that by allowing this message on school property, educators expose themselves to potential criminal violations and exposure to successful and costly civil litigation. What would motivate them to take these risks....to expose students to alternative therapies declared to be unhealthy by a majority of medical experts in their field ?

Isn't this irresponisbility and abuse, by definition, religious influenced fanaticsim? There is no controversy in the medical community, as far as policy. Why, then is it permitted in public schools, if not for a trend towards inappropriate religious fundamentalist influence in public administration?
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Old 05-29-2006, 12:46 PM   #29 (permalink)
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how is stressing abstinence a form of child abuse?
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Old 05-29-2006, 01:55 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by dksuddeth
how is stressing abstinence a form of child abuse?
This is the description of the "form of child abuse" in the May 28, 2006 LA Times article. The fundamentalist religious interference in schools that I find abusive is:
Quote:
.....Conservative Christians and Jews have teamed up with men and women who call themselves "ex-gay" to lobby and even sue for the right to tell teenagers that they can "heal" themselves of unwanted same-sex attractions.

<B>They argue that schools have an obligation to balance gay-pride themes with the message that gay and lesbian students can go straight through "reparative therapy." In this view, homosexuality is not a fixed or inborn trait but a symptom of emotional distress a disorder that can be cured.</B>

Alan Chambers, a leading ex-gay activist, recalls how scared and depressed he felt when a high-school counselor advised him to deal with his attraction to other boys by accepting his homosexuality. He had no choice, she told him: He was gay. "It was very damaging," Chambers said. "I didn't want that. I hadn't chosen it."

His senior year, Chambers found his way to Exodus International, a network of groups that support ex-gays. He is now married to a woman, a father of two and the president of Exodus.

<B>Mental-health professionals overwhelmingly warn against therapy to change sexual orientation, calling it ineffective and potentially harmful to patients' self-esteem.</B> But ex-gays say they have managed to eliminate or reduce their pull to the same sex, though it often takes years of struggle......
Some teens commit suicide because of self esteem issues. Why would schools cave in to groups who want to target students who have sexual orientations that have been determined medically, not to be "abnormal" or a "disorder". The medical practitioners believe that "reparative therapy" erodes self esteem. There is no medical or emotional disorder that justifies "reparative therapy".

No one suggests sending a message to students who are attracted to the opposite sex that they should consider "reparative therapy" to reorient themselves to a same sex attraction.....so why, if medically, it has been determined that it is not helpful, but actually harmful to perform "reparative therapy", is it offered...in schools....for students to consider, as an "option" to "cure" a disease that medicine says does not exist.

All students, from a standpoint of social responsibility and control of STD's should be given instruction in safe sex practices and even in abstinence, if it is communicated without moralizing and religious based justification. One group who develops an sexual attraction to members of their own sex should not be mistreated by being told...by outsiders who are permitted to come into their schools to speak to them, that they should consider "reparative therapy".

Such a message is condescending and sends students a message that they should consider repairing a "disorder", or implies that they are "abnormal". The mental health experts have determined that the opposite is true...that they are normal, that they have no disease, simply because they are sexually attracted to members of their own sexual gender.

Are you saying that it is appropriate to send a school sanctioned, abstinence message specifically to these students, because of their sexual orientation?
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Old 05-29-2006, 02:18 PM   #31 (permalink)
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I see what you were saying now, but that issue isn't going to get fixed until science can show with 485% verifiable scientific proof that homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexualism, and every other gender identity-ism is not a 'choice' but a bonafide genetic trait.
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Old 05-29-2006, 03:00 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dksuddeth
I see what you were saying now, but that issue isn't going to get fixed until science can show with 485% verifiable scientific proof that homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexualism, and every other gender identity-ism is not a 'choice' but a bonafide genetic trait.
i hope this isn't off topic... but really, what difference does it make if it's a choice or not?
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Old 05-29-2006, 03:14 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dksuddeth
I see what you were saying now, but that issue isn't going to get fixed until science can show with 485% verifiable scientific proof that homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexualism, and every other gender identity-ism is not a 'choice' but a bonafide genetic trait.
I agree, as far as societal attitudes.....but...when it comes to what public school administrators choose to expose students to....they seem to have an obligation not to put some students in entirely avoidalbe situations where they receive a message that is contradictory to medical practice, or threatens self esteem. When schools start down a religiously driven "road" that exposes students to "therapy" choices that are not medically approved, for "disorders" that are specifically ruled out medically as pathological or treatable, or even as "abnormal", where does it stop?

Intelligent design and creationism are controversial, but they are not health or self esteem issues. Sexual preference and orientation are considered to be non-negotiable choices and a normal part of development, by those licensed medical practioners who treat abnormalities. Public schools need to be "in synch" with public health policy and medical science. Will schools next offer speakers a forum who promote "reparation therapy" to "cure" "self abuse", delivered by ex-masturbators? Will ex-birth control pill ingestees take the stage at schools to relay a message that it is abnormal to take the pill to regulate hormone imbalances.

Will schools next permit speakers who discredit medically approved treatments for medically recognized disorders......maybe surgery or blood transfusions, or even antibiotics, on religious or prevelant socially prejudicial grounds.
"Race mixing" can lead to challenges in life, as difficult in some locales as those that same sex couples are often confronted with. Should "ex-race mixers" be given a forum to guide students into avoidance of a lifetime of being stared and pointed at, in public, or for bearing mix raced children who suffer from the effects of prejudice?

Once the door is open to allow a message to students from allegedly "rehabbed" "ex" practitioners of a given practice....the inference, by the very presence and message of these speakers....at a school....is that students are doing something that is abnormal or unapproved....and that their conduct or orientation must be "repaired" or changed to a "more normal" or more "positive" level.
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Old 05-29-2006, 03:32 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hannukah harry
i hope this isn't off topic... but really, what difference does it make if it's a choice or not?
As long as the 'religious' anything considers those 'alternative lifestyles' choices, then they will continue to support reparitive therapy and/or legislation of prohibition against those lifestyles. Choices can be punished or outlawed whereas genetic 'anomolies' (forgive my choice of wording, I didn't know what else to call it at this point) cannot be repaired with therapy or outlawed.
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Old 05-29-2006, 03:38 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by host
I agree, as far as societal attitudes.....but...when it comes to what public school administrators choose to expose students to....they seem to have an obligation not to put some students in entirely avoidalbe situations where they receive a message that is contradictory to medical practice, or threatens self esteem. When schools start down a religiously driven "road" that exposes students to "therapy" choices that are not medically approved, for "disorders" that are specifically ruled out medically as pathological or treatable, or even as "abnormal", where does it stop?

Intelligent design and creationism are controversial, but they are not health or self esteem issues. Sexual preference and orientation are considered to be non-negotiable choices and a normal part of development, by those licensed medical practioners who treat abnormalities. Public schools need to be "in synch" with public health policy and medical science. Will schools next offer speakers a forum who promote "reparation therapy" to "cure" "self abuse", delivered by ex-masturbators? Will ex-birth control pill ingestees take the stage at schools to relay a message that it is abnormal to take the pill to regulate hormone imbalances.

Will schools next permit speakers who discredit medically approved treatments for medically recognized disorders......maybe surgery or blood transfusions, or even antibiotics, on religious or prevelant socially prejudicial grounds.
"Race mixing" can lead to challenges in life, as difficult in some locales as those that same sex couples are often confronted with. Should "ex-race mixers" be given a forum to guide students into avoidance of a lifetime of being stared and pointed at, in public, or for bearing mix raced children who suffer from the effects of prejudice?

Once the door is open to allow a message to students from allegedly "rehabbed" "ex" practitioners of a given practice....the inference, by the very presence and message of these speakers....at a school....is that students are doing something that is abnormal or unapproved....and that their conduct or orientation must be "repaired" or changed to a "more normal" or more "positive" level.
Of course you have no evidence to prove that homosexuality is non-negotiable, just your opinion that is backed up by the opinion of other people with letters behind their name.

How is this opinion "The ex-gay movement considers same-sex attraction to be a gender-identity disorder, brought on by inadequate parenting, unmet emotional needs and, often, childhood sexual abuse" any less valid that the opinion that someone is born a homosexual. Both are nothing more than opinions. Neither are fact.
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Old 05-29-2006, 03:40 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by host
I agree, as far as societal attitudes.....but...when it comes to what public school administrators choose to expose students to....they seem to have an obligation not to put some students in entirely avoidalbe situations where they receive a message that is contradictory to medical practice, or threatens self esteem. When schools start down a religiously driven "road" that exposes students to "therapy" choices that are not medically approved, for "disorders" that are specifically ruled out medically as pathological or treatable, or even as "abnormal", where does it stop?
The only 'logical' stop would be to stop teaching religion, or non-religion, in the public school system. It is because we've allowed, or in some cases even demanded, that the school system take over the parents responsibility. If parents would take their responsibility back, we wouldn't be facing these issues on a public school basis.

Quote:
Originally Posted by host
Public schools need to be "in synch" with public health policy and medical science. Will schools next offer speakers a forum who promote "reparation therapy" to "cure" "self abuse", delivered by ex-masturbators?
Public schools shouldn't even be 'synching' these issues. They have nothing to do with preparation for adult life in the social and economic world. These issues should be assumed by the parents.

Quote:
Originally Posted by host
Will schools next permit speakers who discredit medically approved treatments for medically recognized disorders......maybe surgery or blood transfusions, or even antibiotics, on religious or prevelant socially prejudicial grounds.
"Race mixing" can lead to challenges in life, as difficult in some locales as those that same sex couples are often confronted with. Should "ex-race mixers" be given a forum to guide students into avoidance of a lifetime of being stared and pointed at, in public, or for bearing mix raced children who suffer from the effects of prejudice?

Once the door is open to allow a message to students from allegedly "rehabbed" "ex" practitioners of a given practice....the inference, by the very presence and message of these speakers....at a school....is that students are doing something that is abnormal or unapproved....and that their conduct or orientation must be "repaired" or changed to a "more normal" or more "positive" level.
which is why the school system should not be made to handle these issues. This is part of the 'it takes a village' crap that causes problems, doesn't work, and only divides us. These are all issues that should be discussed between parents, children, and their doctors/priests/anyone else in a capacity to deal with this that isn't in the school environment.
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Old 05-30-2006, 10:44 AM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dksuddeth
which is why the school system should not be made to handle these issues. This is part of the 'it takes a village' crap that causes problems, doesn't work, and only divides us. These are all issues that should be discussed between parents, children, and their doctors/priests/anyone else in a capacity to deal with this that isn't in the school environment.
bingo.

The problem isn't the ex-gays wanting equal time. The problem is discussing homosexuality in school to begin with. Keep all that crap out of school. Teach kids how to read, write, do math. Prepare kids to think for themselves and to solve problems. Period.
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Old 05-30-2006, 11:52 AM   #38 (permalink)
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Of course you have no evidence to prove that homosexuality is non-negotiable, just your opinion that is backed up by the opinion of other people with letters behind their name.

How is this opinion "The ex-gay movement considers same-sex attraction to be a gender-identity disorder, brought on by inadequate parenting, unmet emotional needs and, often, childhood sexual abuse" any less valid that the opinion that someone is born a homosexual. Both are nothing more than opinions. Neither are fact.
Public schools should not make a forum available to people who communicate an advocacy for therapies that are specifically disapproved in policy statements of major and well recognized medical practitioner associations, or describe a sexual orientation that mental health care practitioners, at every level...M.D., PhD, and MSW have determined as not being pathological, or a "disorder", or even abnormal, or as something that should be "treated" via medical care or therapy,........that are intended to alter sexual orientation.

The medical community couldn't be less ambiguous: don't "eff" with it.....attempting to influence anyone to become an "ex" hetero or "ex" homo
sexual, implies that their current orientation is "negative" or not normal, or flawed. This increases the risk to the already fragile self esteem of teen aged,
or younger students, in an area that is part of their core identity....during a key stage in their final development into adulthood.

An "ex"-gay message, sanctioned by schools is a mental and emotional health
issue. Where does a public school stand, legally, after it permits such a message and the communication of a reparative therapy option....for a "condition" or "disorder", that the medical community has declared does not exist, and that there is no medically approved "treatment", nor is there a need for one?

Isn't letting this "ex"-gay message be delivered to students in public schools, an extra legal, and medically unsound, decision by school administrators?
If it isn't then....what is it? Is there any other justification to allow this, that is not rooted in religious fundamentalist beleif, or ignorant or misinformed bigotry against the sexual orientation of others? Are school administrators qualified to determine the validity of healthcare policy or of scientific medical determinations accepted in the medical community? I thought that was under the authority of state medical review and licensing boards, or the FDA.

The medical community says homosexuality is not pathological and that there is no "disorder" to "treat" or to provide "therapy" for. Why then....the posts that focus on whether homosexuality is a "choice". Why is that relevant?
Shouldn't the focus be on why public schools would permit delivery to students, the message of advocacy for a "reparative therapy" that the medical community has determined to be non-effective, and actually risks harm to self esteem, to "repair" a "disorder" that does not exist?

Schools do have an obligation to provide self esteem building methods and outlets for students, especially where is it recognized that attacks on self esteem via misinformation or intentional bigotry are a threat to students' self esteem.
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Old 05-30-2006, 01:23 PM   #39 (permalink)
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woah woah woah.

Schools should NOT be in the business of "building self-seteem" That touchey-feely new age crap doesn't do one thing towards preparing children for the real world and is one of the predominent reasons for such poor student achievement.

Some schools don't even use grades anymore because "it should all be about the effort" Giving johnny a C and mary an A makes johnny feel bad and promotes competition. <- thats the thought of the education system today. Several of my wife's friends & sisters are teachers/education majors/education grad students and I'm always interested to hear what they have to say about education. And thats the stuff they say. Grades promote competition and competition hurts self-esteem.

Our schools are ruining our kids and its because of crap like that. losing and getting you feelings hurst used to be a good thing. It used to be called "building character" and it used to make you want to try harder to get better and achieve. now its bad and detremental to development.

But it all starts at home. If parents never would have given up the responsibility of raising their kids to the school system, our education system wouldn't be polluted with this nonsense and we could be focusing on teaching science and math and how to read and write. We should be creating the world's next engineers and scientists, instead we're creating the worlds next wefare generation with no regard for responsibility.
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Old 05-30-2006, 02:18 PM   #40 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by host
Public schools should not make a forum available to people who communicate an advocacy for therapies that are specifically disapproved in policy statements of major and well recognized medical practitioner associations, or describe a sexual orientation that mental health care practitioners, at every level...M.D., PhD, and MSW have determined as not being pathological, or a "disorder", or even abnormal, or as something that should be "treated" via medical care or therapy,........that are intended to alter sexual orientation.

The medical community couldn't be less ambiguous: don't "eff" with it.....attempting to influence anyone to become an "ex" hetero or "ex" homo
sexual, implies that their current orientation is "negative" or not normal, or flawed. This increases the risk to the already fragile self esteem of teen aged,
or younger students, in an area that is part of their core identity....during a key stage in their final development into adulthood.

An "ex"-gay message, sanctioned by schools is a mental and emotional health
issue. Where does a public school stand, legally, after it permits such a message and the communication of a reparative therapy option....for a "condition" or "disorder", that the medical community has declared does not exist, and that there is no medically approved "treatment", nor is there a need for one?

Isn't letting this "ex"-gay message be delivered to students in public schools, an extra legal, and medically unsound, decision by school administrators?
If it isn't then....what is it? Is there any other justification to allow this, that is not rooted in religious fundamentalist beleif, or ignorant or misinformed bigotry against the sexual orientation of others? Are school administrators qualified to determine the validity of healthcare policy or of scientific medical determinations accepted in the medical community? I thought that was under the authority of state medical review and licensing boards, or the FDA.

The medical community says homosexuality is not pathological and that there is no "disorder" to "treat" or to provide "therapy" for. Why then....the posts that focus on whether homosexuality is a "choice". Why is that relevant?
Shouldn't the focus be on why public schools would permit delivery to students, the message of advocacy for a "reparative therapy" that the medical community has determined to be non-effective, and actually risks harm to self esteem, to "repair" a "disorder" that does not exist?

Schools do have an obligation to provide self esteem building methods and outlets for students, especially where is it recognized that attacks on self esteem via misinformation or intentional bigotry are a threat to students' self esteem.
How is your faith in these opinions any different than the faith involved in accepting a religion that supports the opposite view? You are taking blind faith in the views of a group of people. I don't understand this trend that somehow studying something extensively and providing opinions from experts somehow makes it 'law'. They can call it whatever they want, and you can quote as if it's true as the law of gravity, but it doesn't change what the facts are. There are no real scientific developments or anything based on facts in the 'mental health' community that proves anything about sexual orientation. Therefore the debate should remain open just as with creationism or big bang theory or whatever.

If you really want be to 'scientific' why not use a real science, like biology, that is based on tangible facts rather than a foundation of nothing more than opinions of so called experts. Just teach kids the FACTS. Boys have male 'parts' and girls have female 'parts' and both are needed to come together to produce life. It's pretty hard to argue with the facts of a real science when you break it down.

However, if a campus has gay rights groups there's no reason why someone shouldn't have the ability to voluntarily seek out a group that tries to change their orientation. How can you argue with that? Basic freedom of speech/religion if you ask me.

Teaching sexual orientation in middle and high schools though is just wrong. However, in this insane world we live in if you're going to have a pro homosexuality view, then we have to allow for the opposite view.
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