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Posts for October, 2012

Minnesota for Marriage: They’re Coming After Our Children

Jim Burroway

October 25th, 2012

Minnesota for Marriage, the group fighting to deface that state’s constitution with the stain of discrimination, has released this ad today predicting that if Amendment 1 fails — which, if it did, nothing in Minnesota would change — but if Amendment 1 fails, next thing you know they will be teaching homosexuality in schools. Massachusetts’ David Parker is the face of this ad. He’s the guy who failed in his demands that he be given advance notice each and every time his son might be exposed to anything related to marriage and gay families — even if it was just a classmate reading an essay about her two mommies for Mother’s Day.

Minnesota for Marriage are running this ad because this message has proven to be very effect in past campaigns, particularly in Maine and California. This has become an essential campaign tactic for our opponents. They know two things: 1) they know that most voters are more motivated to on something according to how it affects them personally over how it affects other people abstractly (and anyone who is someone else is always an abstraction), and 2)  very few voters actually care personally about same-sex marriage, but they do care much more personally about what is happening in their schools. Those two reasons taken together are why these ads are so effective. It changes the topic from something very few people personally care about to another topic that they do personally care about.

I argued last year that because we knew this was coming — we did know it was coming, right? –  we needed to either come up with a response or go home. So I don’t know about you, but I’m on the edge of my seat to see what marriage equality proponents have come up with to blunt this. They’ve had four years to prepare, so I’m sure it’ll be good.

MassResistance and White Supremist Find Common Cause

Timothy Kincaid

April 8th, 2008

Paul Ash is the Superintendent of Schools in Lexington, Massachusetts. He has long been under attack from the virulently (but hypocritically) anti-gay group Mass Resistence. His crime? Including same-sex married couples in curriculum that talks about families.

Anti-gay activist David Parker has been the primary player in waging war on the school district.

Courts have concluded that the school system can talk about families, including gay families, whether or not it displeases the religious sensibilities of some specific parents. And Ash intends to do just that.

But Hal Turner, an internet radio show host, has posted Mr. Ash’s home address and encouraged his readers to attack him.

I would laugh if some concerned father(s) donned ski masks and gloves, took a ride over to this arrogant prick’s house and knocked the living shit out of him. I advocate parents using FORCE AND VIOLENCE against Superintendent Paul B. Ash as a method of defending the health and safety of school children presently being endangered through his politically-correct indoctrination into deadly, disease-ridden sodomite lifestyles.

This, naturally, has concerned the Superintendent and the local authorities. So who is not concerned about Ash’s well being. According to WBZ TV,

“He has to expect that people are going to be extremely angry over what he’s doing,” said Lexington parent David Parker, who objected to the same-sex curriculum in the past.

Parker said he’s not surprised by the threats.

“You can put it under any guise you want but little children don’t need other adults asserting sexual proclivities to them and normalizing it and parents are in an outrage,” he said.

“We can’t be deterred by individuals that are attempting to intimidate teaching children to love one another and respect one another.”

MassResistence reports about the incident (with the subtitle Threats against Parkers, as usual, are ignored).

Parker had never heard of the talk-show or the website (nor have we). However, he acknowledged on WBZ-TV that parents have no longer any legal protection for their children and many are becoming agitated.

What Parker and MassResistence (and the television station) failed to mention is the primary focus of Mr. Turner: advancement of the White Supremacist cause. Here are a few samples of Mr. Turner’s choice phrases. (Warning: Offensive language; emphases in the original.)

For all his millions, this guy is nothing more than a low-class NIGGER. He needs to have a Cross lit on his property to calm his uppity-black-ass down. If that warning doesn’t work, Lynch his black ass.

and

Blacks cannot compete and cannot get-by in schools where they share studies with Whites and Asians.

In city after city, the sad story repeats itself. When will people realize that Blacks are GENETICALLY inferior? When will we reinstate segregation that is so desperately needed?

Perhaps I’ve lived in California too long. But people like this make my stomach turn. They certainly don’t inspire me to go on a television show in their defense.

But this really shouldn’t surprise me. Haters are haters.

UPDATE:

Pam Spaulding of Pam’s House Blend reminds us that in 2005 Max Blumenthal at The Nation exposed the relationship between Hal Turner and Sean Hannity.

To area conservatives, he was best known by his moniker for call-ins to the Sean Hannity Show, “Hal from North Bergen.” For years, Hannity offered his top-rated radio show as a regular forum for Turner’s occasionally racist, always over-the-top rants. Hannity also chatted with him off-air, allegedly offering encouragement to Turner as he struggled to overcome a cocaine habit and homosexual leanings.

Again, while this saddens me, it really shouldn’t surprise me.

Anti-Gay Activist David Parker Loses Appeal

Timothy Kincaid

February 1st, 2008

who-family.bmpDavid Parker is a cause célèbre for anti-gay activists.

They love to claim that he was arrested protecting his child from a “homosexual curriculum” in his kindergarten class. Here’s the real story:

In January 2005, Jacob Parker brought home a diversity book bag from his kindergarten. Included in the bag was books about other cultures and traditions, food recipes, and a book called Who’s in a Family. The illustrations included various family constructions: single parents, mom-dad-kids, grandparents, mixed-race families, and same-sex parents.

David Parker, his father, decided that young Jacob was entitled to ignorance of the existence of same-sex headed families. He set out to change school policy so that his child not be exposed to that fact. He extended his demands to include any discussion of same-sex parenting, regardless of the context or setting – including any conversations of children of gay or lesbian parents.

Because the school district has a large number of same-sex families, many with children attending the school, the administration deemed Parker’s request to be nearly impossible.

This resulted in a string of emails and eventually Parker showed up in the administrative offices and refused to leave until his demands were met. At the end of the day, police were called and, when Parker refused the police requests to leave, he was arrested for trespassing.

Dr. Paul Ash, superintendent of Lexington Public Schools, said the school tried to be accommodating.

“The school department said, ‘Look, we’ll work with you, but we cannot assure you what a child is going to say and that we can immediately stop a discussion that you find objectionable,’” said Ash. “One of the central units in kindergarten is the discussion of families and we show families of all different types.” Ash says the discussions “ended up in an irreconcilable difference.”

In June 2006, the Parkers sued the school in federal court for civil right violations.

They were joined by the Joseph and Robin Wirthlin, parents of a second grader in the same district. On a day in which the school discussed marriage, a teacher read King and King, a book in which a prince doesn’t fall for a princess but for another prince instead. Although marriage laws in Massachusetts include same-sex couples, the Wirthlins believe that such marriages should be excluded from discussion about marriages in the classroom.

A few days after filing their suit, David Parker’s credibility came under question. He spread a story that his child, Jacob, was beaten by students for David Parker’s anti-gay stance and suggested that school teachers or the administration were behind the beating.

After much press in the anti-gay conservative Christian media, the facts were released. It turned out to be nothing greater than a schoolyard scuffle over who sat next to whom in the cafeteria.

In February 2007, U.S. District Judge Mark L. Wolf dismissed the lawsuit.

In his 38-page decision, Chief Judge Mark L. Wolf of US District Court said that under the US Constitution, public schools are “entitled to teach anything that is reasonably related to the goals of preparing students to become engaged and productive citizens in our democracy.”

“Diversity is a hallmark of our nation,” he said.

The Parkers and Wirthlins appealed the decision. Yesterday the three judge appeals panel unanimously upheld Judge Wolf’s decision.

“Public schools are not obliged to shield individual students from ideas which potentially are religiously offensive, particularly when the school imposes no requirement that the student agree with or affirm those ideas, or even participate in discussions about them,” the court said in its ruling.

As we have seen recently, anti-gay activists object not only to any positions taken publicly that are favorable to gay individuals and couples, but to even the acknowledgment of their existence. The court addressed this issue.

Writing for the Appeals Court, Judge Sandra L. Lynch said the parents did not have the legal right “to be free from any reference in public elementary schools to the existence of families in which the parents are of different gender combinations,” according to the ADL statement.

The Parkers and their attorneys are preparing to take the case to the US Supreme Court.