State of the Culture: Sex education and public nudity

By Jonathon Van Maren

The incessant debate about sex education has reared its head once again, this time in Manitoba. The Carillon, which prides itself on publishing “news that matters to people in Southeastern Manitoba,” published an article on a mother who is advocating that “LGBT information” be taught in middle school:

A mother told the Hanover School Division’s board of trustees Tuesday that refusing to teach middle-school students about sexual orientation and gender identity fosters a discriminatory environment.

Michelle McHale, whose child has been bullied for living in a household with two mothers, explained to trustees the division is excluding a minority group by not acknowledging that people can have different sexual orientations until high school. She described the practice as a form of discrimination because a group is being treated differently on the basis of protected characteristics.

“Staying silent about LGBT information alienates the children who themselves identify as LGBT and also alienates the children whose parents identify as LGBT,” said McHale.

McHale told the trustees that since she believed homosexuality was not a choice, it should be taught early on. She even shared some of her personal story:

McHale explains she struggled with coming to grips with her sexuality. She didn’t recognize her attraction to other females growing up. She married a man, had kids and it was not until her early 30s until she made sense of her sexuality.

“Once I figured it out, I was closeted with it for a long time because it’s scary to think about what the world at large will do or say or how you’ll be perceived or accepted.”

Those fears subsided once she got to know her partner Karen, who McHale has been together with for about three years. “It didn’t matter anymore because of the connection that I had found with Karen,” explained McHale.

I must say, the one thing I’ve never been able to understand is the double standard that applies to same-sex relationships. Something that would be considered profoundly selfish—abandoning your spouse and children—is excepted as a genuinely positive thing if the person that the spouse is being abandoned for happens to be of the same-sex. Like Premier Kathleen Wynne of Ontario, for example. While being attracted to those of the same sex may not be a choice, abandoning your spouse and children most certainly is a choice, and a selfish and repulsive one, too.

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Re-educating the upcoming generation on sexuality is number one on the priority list for secular leftists, and it’s not just in Canada. From John Stonestreet:

A 4-year-old Colorado girl was kicked out of her private preschool last month because her mom tried to opt her out of story time. Among the books being read to these children were stories about same-sex couples and gender-confused earthworms.

The school explained it can’t let students opt out of this exercise, because it’s an integral part of their “anti-bias curriculum.” Turns out this school is not unique. Throughout Boulder’s public preschools, for instance, teachers were trained to tell small children that LGBT lifestyles are normal. One organization, known as “A Queer Endeavor,” has trained thousands of teachers how to help students accept so-called “sexual diversity.”

Many public and even private schools are actively teaching an alternative worldview to kids barely out of diapers. We’ve got to take an active role in our child’s education. What that looks like may vary, from Christian schools to homeschooling, to strong parent-teacher relationships, but doing nothing is not an option.

Christian education has always been important, but since state schools have begun to take an active role in proselytizing for the state religion of relativism, it has become paramount. Do not trust that you can  send your children off to a state school and expect them to surface in a decade or so with their Christian beliefs still intact. Because they won’t be.

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Dennis Praeger is one of America’s best commentators, and has a profound understanding of culture. Recently, he penned an open letter to secular conservatives, explaining to them why conservatism isn’t enough to save America:

It shows how effective the secular indoctrination in our schools and media has been, that even the majority of conservative thinkers are not only secular themselves, but seem to have no idea how much of the American civilization rests on religious foundations. 

They don’t seem to understand that the only solution to many — perhaps most — of the social problems ailing America and the West is some expression of Judeo-Christian faith. Do the inner-city kids who study the Bible and go to church each week lead wasted lives, join gangs, bear children out of wedlock or commit murder? Other than a religious revival, what do conservatives, with all their superb critiques of disastrous left-wing policies, think will uplift inner-city youths?

And why do secular conservatives think so many affluent and well-educated Americans have adopted left-wing dogmas, such as feminism, socialism, environmentalism and egalitarianism as their religions? Because people want to — have to — believe in something. And if it’s not God and Christianity or Judaism, it’s going to be some form of Leftism. Why are evangelical Protestants, theologically conservative Catholics, Orthodox Jews and practicing Mormons almost all conservative? Because they already have a religion and therefore don’t need the alternate gods of leftist faiths, and also because Judeo-Christian religions have different values than leftist religions.

When these conservatives — people who revere the Founding Fathers and the Declaration of Independence — read the founders’ assertion that all men “are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights,” do they believe what the founders wrote? Or were they just echoing the irrational religious beliefs of their time, as people on the left believe? 

When these conservatives see the components of what I call the American Trinity — the words “liberty,” “In God We Trust” and “e pluribus unum” inscribed on every American coin — do they regard “In God We Trust” as no longer necessary? 

At the end of the day, a breakdown of values results in a breakdown of the family. And once the family is broken, big government does not just become an option, it very nearly become a necessity, as the eternal bureaucracies of the state ooze in to fill the void left by the family. Without our Judeo-Christian values, conservatism is nothing.

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Fiscal conservatives who are social liberals are, to put it bluntly, just people who want to keep more of their money. The Atlantic published an article titled “Millenials’ political views don’t make any sense,” and note that young people tend to stop being socialist the moment it involves giving up their own money:

Millennials are more liberal than the rest of the country, particularly on social issues, but they get more economically conservative when they make more money.

The youngest voting generation today is the most liberal bloc in a long, long timefor three reasons.

First, they’re young and poor, and young, poor people are historically more liberal. Second, they’re historically non-white. Non-white Americans are historically liberal, too. Third, their white demo is historically liberal compared to older white voters, as Jon Chait has pointed out. It all adds up to one cresting blue wave. For now.

But something interesting happens when Millennials start making serious dough. They start getting much more squeamish about giving it away.

How very shocking.

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Over at the Washington Post, journalists are noticing that Christianity isn’t on the decline—it’s simply shifting dramatically:

While Christianity may be on the decline in the United States, the world is becoming more religious, not less. While rising numbers of “nones” — those who claim no religious affiliation when asked — claim the attention of religious pundits, the world tells a different story. Religious convictions are growing and shifting geographically in several dramatic ways.

The center of Christianity has shifted from Europe to the global South.

The religious landscape is particularly changing for the world’s Christians. A century ago, 80 percent lived in North America and Europe, compared with just 40 percent today.

In 1980, more Christians were found in the global South than the North for the first time in 1,000 years. Today, the Christian community in Latin America and Africa, alone, account for 1 billion people.

Over the past 100 years, Christians grew from less than 10 percent of Africa’s population to its nearly 500 million today. One out of four Christians in the world presently is an Africa, and the Pew Research Center estimates that will grow to 40 percent by 2030.

Asia is also experiencing growth as world Christianity’s center has moved not only South, but also East. In the last century, Christianity grew at twice the rate of population in that continent. Asia’s Christian population of 350 million is projected to grow to 460 million by 2025.

The global religious wildcard is China. Even today, demographers estimate that more Christian believers are found worshipping in China on any given Sunday than in the United States. Future trends, while difficult to predict because so much is below the religious radar, could dramatically drive down the world’s religious “nones.”

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Our new sexual orthodoxy is so rigid that even opposing public nudity is now “homophobic.” From the Toronto Star:

Toronto trustees did not debate a motion asking the city to enforce no-nudity laws at Toronto’s Pride Parade this summer. Instead, they took an immediate vote, and soundly defeated it.

The controversial proposal from Trustee Sam Sotiropoulos — which critics called everything from distasteful to homophobic — had asked that the board “immediately write a letter to the mayor and city council of Toronto asking them to clarify whether or not the public nudity law of Canada will be upheld and enforced” at the parade, which the board takes part in.

He said the board is “bound by its code of conduct” and must respect the law, and later said the motion was not against homosexuals, but about upholding the law.

But after he introduced his motion, Trustees Gerri Gershon and Irene Atkinson — who had originally supported it — called for a vote, where 16 trustees were against it, and six in favour.

Trustee Cathy Dandy later said the discussion around the issue was not about nudity but about not tolerating shame, and she was glad the vote went the way it did. Trustee Maria Rodrigues, who later presented her motion affirming trustees’ support of Pride, noted the Toronto District School Board has marched in the parade since 1996.

She said she’s gone to it with her two daughters many times “and they are just fine.”

Which is more than I can say about Ms. Dandy.

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Sometimes it’s amusing to see the Left devour itself. It’s sort of like watching a poisonous snake choke on its own tail. From the Daily Mail:

Acclaimed author Ian McEwan has waded into the transgender row after warning of a ‘troubling wave’ of political correctness.

McEwan, 67, was speaking at a student society lecture at the Royal Institution in London, when he was invited to ponder on how the notion of self has evolved throughout history.

The writer of Atonement, and winner of the Man Booker prize for Amsterdam, upset some when he said that a person’s identity was constrained by biology and social norms.

However, he claimed that now people are treating the idea of identity like a commodity.

He said: ‘The self, like a consumer desirable, may be plucked from the shelves of a personal identity supermarket, a ready-to-wear little black number.’

McEwan is not the first high profile personality to offer controversial views on transgenderism.

Feminist Germaine Greer and writer Julie Bindel have also caused upset in the last 18 months.

Greer in particular said: ‘I don’t believe a woman is a man without a c***.’…

McEwan said that the identity crisis people with gender dysmorphia suffer is a ‘bitter conflict’ but warned that there was a sense of ‘victimhood’ sweeping through American universities and, to a lesser extent, on British campuses.

His speech was said to be well received by the audience, however one woman said his comments were ‘offensive’ and asked him to be more specific, reports the Times.

He replied: ‘Call me old-fashioned, but I tend to think of people with penises as men.’

That’s what passes for “old-fashioned” these days, apparently.

 

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