Monday, January 24, 2005


More Christian charity from the Religious Right:

National 'No Name-Calling' Week Irks Conservatives

Using a young readers' novel called "The Misfits" as its centerpiece, middle schools nationwide will participate in a "No Name-Calling Week" initiative starting Monday. The program, now in its second year, has the backing of groups from the Girl Scouts to Amnesty International but has also drawn complaints that it overemphasizes harassment of gay youths....

"The Misfits" deals with four much-taunted middle school students -- one of them gay -- who run for the student council on a platform advocating an end to nasty name-calling....

"No Name-calling Week" takes aim at insults of all kinds - whether based on a child's appearance, background or behavior. But a handful of conservative critics have zeroed in on the references to harassment based on sexual orientation.

"I hope schools will realize it's less an exercise in tolerance than a platform for liberal groups to promote their pan-sexual agenda," said Robert Knight, director of Concerned Women for America's Culture and Family Institute.

"Schools should be steering kids away from identifying as gay," Knight said. "You can teach civility to kids and tell them every child is valued without conveying the message that failure to accept homosexuality as normal is a sign of bigotry."...


Yeah, kid -- we value you, we just don't accept you.

I'm intrigued by Knight's insistence that "you can teach civility to kids ... without conveying the message that failure to accept homosexuality as normal is a sign of bigotry." How does that work? "Don't call him a faggot -- you can think it, in fact you should think it, just don't say it."

By the way, here's the site for No Name-Calling Week, and here are kids' stories, essays, artworks, and songs that have won prizes in connection with the event. Yeah, the author of The Misfits is gay and No Name-Calling Week was developed by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network -- but the event is about name-calling of all kinds, as the prizewinners make abundantly clear.

(Link via Democratic Underground.)

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