Thursday, July 28, 2005

PTA Again Sides With Homosexual Group

By AFA Journal
July 27, 2005

(AgapePress) - "The National Parents and Teachers Association (PTA) hosted a workshop in June that stressed the need to incorporate more "gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender" (GLBT) issues in public school policies and curricula. Meanwhile, a group that presents a message of hope for homosexuals and ex-homosexuals was refused space for their own display.

The Safe Schools workshop at the National PTA Convention in Columbus, Ohio, was conducted by Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), a group that wants more training for teachers and students on homosexual and trans-gender issues in schools.

One of the PFLAG presenters, United Church of Christ minister Lawrence Rezash, told PTA members that putting a rainbow ribbon -- a symbol of homosexual pride and solidarity -- on a school bulletin board is one of many subtle ways teachers and guidance counselors can let GLBT students know they are in a safe environment.

However, pro-family groups like the American Family Association believe that the "school safety" argument is used as a smokescreen to allow homosexual propaganda into classrooms. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, for example, only 1 percent of school bullying and harassment incidents are due to a student's sexual orientation.

Grove City College psychology professor and mental health counselor Dr. Warren Throckmorton contends there are ways schools can provide safety for all students without singling out specific victim groups.

"I think if any kid is being harassed for any reason, teachers should intervene ...," he said. "Bullies bully because they're able to, and teachers need to intervene every time they see bullying -- not just when [the bullying involves] certain groups of kids."

Meanwhile, some members of the National PTA have criticized their organization's decision to shut out an "ex-gay" group from the PTA's convention. Although the PTA has refused to comment to the press on its rejection of the group Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (PFOX), disgruntled convention delegates are not remaining silent on the issue.

One delegate from Columbus -- a public school teacher who wished to remain anonymous for fear of retribution from PTA leaders -- contended that the exclusion of PFOX was because the PTA favors the presence of homosexual activist groups in public schools.

"I just believe that it's a political agenda," she said, "and whoever made the decision to deny [exhibit space to PFOX] is connected to the gay community in some way. Therefore they made a decision to shut out this group."

Numerous communities have decided to establish local parent-teacher organizations, preferring to use all monies from fundraisers in their own schools, rather than supporting a national organization that increasingly takes liberal positions on cultural issues like homosexuality.

Perhaps as a result, overall PTA membership nationwide is down -- as was attendance at this year's PTA convention."

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