If only they could hear themselves

Two items today, both of which illustrate the self-centeredness and complete absence of personal responsibility that is epidemic among the anti-gay crowd.

David Parker is the Massachusetts parent who had a fit because the book “King & King” was read in his son’s kindergarten class last year. (The full text of his lawsuit against the town and school system is available here.) He is now claiming that his son was beaten up by his first grader classmates in a “planned and premeditated” attack, specifically on the anniversary of marriage equality in Massachusetts. Parker and his allies allege in a press release that the children were incited by their parents, school officials and “homosexual activists” to beat up his son during recess.

As evidence, his group cites “angry anti-David Parker websites” such as Lexington Cares, which states the following “angry and hateful” ideas:

  • All children must be able to discuss their families in our public school classrooms without the removal of other students from the class.
  • All children deserve to see themselves and their families reflected in school materials and conversations so they feel safe, welcome and are able to learn.

and the fact that “entire families” were present at demonstrations in support of such inclusive curriculum. Can you imagine? Entire families standing up for their right to be included in our public schools? The nerve.

Then there is this gem:

The kids’ signs have particularly insidious messages: “Support ALL Our Children, Families, Schools” and “Anyone Can Go to School.”

According to school officials and Lexington Cares, the fight was actually between two seven-year-old boys over one of them sitting in the “wrong” seat at lunch. The instigator was brought to first grade justice: He wrote a statement about what he did wrong and an apology to Mr. Parker’s son. By the end of that afternoon they were friends again, with their arms around each other (alert the reparative therapy industry!)

This passage, from the Parker’s lawsuit, expresses why they feel entitled to control everything their children are exposed to in the classroom.

By virtue of their strong religious faith, the Parkers adhere to a religious principle that holds that marriage is holy matrimony by definition, a union between a man and a woman, and that labeling marriage to be otherwise is immoral. The notion of the acceptable interchangeability of male and female within the marriage construct and within a personal identity dictated by nature is not consistent with the Parkers’ sincerely-held religious beliefs, nor is the sexual acting out of same-sex attraction (homosexuality).

We all have sincerely-held beliefs, and at times those beliefs are contradicted by others. Our children all hear things at school from time to time that we disagree with. We don’t all, however, demand the special right to prevent this occurrence, even at the cost of making other children and their families feel unwelcome. Sorry, but the answer is no. Get over it.

The second item concerns the firing of an appointee to the Metro Board for making disparaging comments about gay people in a television appearance.

From the Washington Post:

Maryland Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. yesterday fired Robert J. Smith, his appointee on the Metro transit authority board, for referring to gay people as sexual deviants on a cable television show.

“Robert Smith’s comments were highly inappropriate, insensitive and unacceptable,” Ehrlich (R) said in a statement less than five hours after the controversy erupted during a Metro board meeting. “They are in direct conflict to my administration’s commitment to inclusiveness, tolerance and opportunity.”

Smith characterized his comments as his personal beliefs, and that he has the right to express them. Ok, fine. He does not, however, have the right to expect endorsement of them, or for his colleagues on the Board, including openly gay D.C. Council member Jim Graham, to accept such offensive statements as just another point of view.

Smith and Parker, and others who cry “discrimination” when they are slapped down for attacks on our community, are clueless. They want to be treated as if their “personal beliefs” that GLBT people are inferior human beings is just a bloodless abstraction, and that they are not talking about the real, breathing person who is sitting across the table from them. This was not a disagreement over some Metro policy issue, something on which two board members could agree to disagree while maintaining mutual respect – this was an assault on the core being and inherent worth of a category of person. Smith added insult to injury by saying that Jim Graham’s request for an apology was “high theater,” and that Graham shouldn’t be offended because “I didn’t make the comments to Mr. Graham. . . I’m sorry he feels that way. I don’t agree that his lifestyle is an appropriate way to lead one’s life.”

“I didn’t make the comments to Mr. Graham,” I just said that the kind of person he is should not be respected; there’s no reason to take offense. “I don’t want my child to know that there are families with same gender parents,” so I demand that your family be made invisible. Me, me, me. These are people who seem to genuinely believe that they can say and do anything they want in the name of personal beliefs, but take no personal responsibility at all. Holding them accountable for the effect of their actions on real human beings elicits whining that their viewpoint isn’t being respected. Because, apparently, we aren’t real human beings to them.

Memo to the clueless: How can I say this more clearly? In a contest between the two, my right to exist is more important than your right to endorsement of the belief that I shouldn’t exist. I don’t think there is any question about which of these things is morally defensible.

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2 Responses to If only they could hear themselves

  1. Jonathan says:

    Our own Eugene Delgaudio issued a press release calling for Ehrlich’s ouster:

    “The Governor should be ashamed of himself and should immediately resign. The pro-family citizens of Maryland should not have to be represented by an anti-Christian bigot.”

    We are so glad that Eugene gets to decide who is “anti-Christian”. A more hilarious screed cam from S. Michael Craven’s Center for Christ and Culture. Craven’s piece is entitled “From Homophobia to Homofascism”. These folks are awfully scared and that makes them awfully scary.

    These are but a few of the growing examples of “homo-fascist” oppression against those who oppose the neo-pagan, anti-family, and anti-religious homosexual agenda. Homosexual activists have gone from an “oppressed minority” to vicious cultural tyrants determined to punish those who disagree with their chosen lifestyle.

  2. David says:

    I had to delete a comment. It clearly crossed the line identified in the posting policy above by presenting as “fact” the idea that GLBT people don’t actually exist, among other slurs.

    Sorry, John, but I mean what I say. This is our house, and if you want to participate, you participate respectfully among equals.