Thursday, March 23, 2006

The LOVE Group forms PAC (Howell Schools)

We're going to have an interesting school board race this spring. From the Argus.

Values in foreground for school vote
By Christopher Nagy
DAILY PRESS & ARGUS

Frustrated that the Howell Public Schools district has not addressed their issues, a group of parents want to push traditional values to center stage in the upcoming May 2 school board election.
This week, they announced the formation of a political action committee to do that pushing.

Paperwork was filed last week for the formation of the Livingston Organization for Values in Education Political Action Committee by members of the LOVE traditional values group.


LOVE sprang to life last spring, emerging in opposition to the rainbow diversity flag put on display in Howell High School in late 2004, which its members see as a promotion and endorsement of homosexuality.
"You can't have something hanging on the wall as controversial as that flag has been and not have a dialogue with the people who are angry about it," said Vicki Fyke, LOVE member. "That's been going on for over a year now. If they won't run (the district) the way we want it run, then we're going to put some people in there who will."


I expect a high turnout in this election. The current Howell School Board is very hostile to the LOVE (Livingston Organization for Values in Education) organization, and many of its members are unhappy to say the least with the board. It's mutual. There is going to have a social issues controversy related to the schools, so it is going to be interesting to say the least. I have not attended any of the LOVE group's meetings, so I am unaware at the specifics they are looking for in school candidates.

Stay tuned for another MAJOR schools related announcement very soon. Thing are going to heat up even more this Spring. I'll just say that a winning organization from the past is going to make a comeback in a very big way.

30 comments:

Kevins said...

All too often the term “traditional values” has been a code word for intolerance, discrimination and fear, and if anyone has been following this “LOVE” group you know that to be the case. They are up in arms over a diversity flag in the high school they mistakenly claim is a gay pride flag, but in the process they have shown their prejudice, fear and ignorance. The only people they love are those who look, act, believe and agree with them 100 percent.

You left out the funny part, “…the group plans to interview all the candidates in the Howell school board race, then throw the organization's support behind the two candidates that best represent the ideas of the LOVE PAC. “ That’s a little disingenuous don’t you think, Dan? Two of the founding members are the candidates, and a third is a member. Who do you think will get the endorsement? Hell, who would want it?

Then, you forgot to mention they are associated with Gary Glenn, perhaps the biggest hate-monger and homophobe in the state.
Also, you didn’t mention there has never been a PAC in a school board race, which are nonpartisan. Not any more.

Please tell me what’s wrong with a kid who is different being able to go to school and not being bullied, harassed and assaulted? We do not need these kinds of people setting an example of intolerance for our kids.

Anonymous said...

Kevins,

You get more liberal every week. The intolerence here are beliefs like yours that say you can impact the developing values of other peoples kids. That they must feel the same way you do. That they must accept the homosexual life style under your conditions.

These peoples beliefs are are simply following the belief of hating the sin but loving the sinner. Yours seems to attack their principled stand based on the their faith. Exposure to a lifestyle choice at an age of experimentation without the understanding that it is dangerous (sexually trans diseases etc) and outside the societies norms is irresponsible for these children to make good choices.

Rome had your very elitest ideas...right at the time of its destruction.

Frankb

Kevins said...

Thank you very much for the compliment, Frank. I can only hope I get more liberal every day. It’s a worthy goal to strive for.

You’re also right that I am intolerant of intolerance, and I’m very proud of that. No one is even asking this borderline hate group to “accept a homosexual lifestyle” because the one issue they are up in arms about, the diversity flag, has nothing to do with homosexuality. Again, the bottom line is this, what’s wrong with a kid who is different being able to go to school and not being bullied, harassed and assaulted?

I seen zero evidence of “hating the sin but loving the sinner,” from people like Gary Glenn and his ilk for a number of reasons, and it’s no more a sin to be a homosexual than it is to be black. How is tolerance of another human being, “Exposure to a lifestyle choice?” There are just as many sexually transmitted diseases in heterosexual relationship as a gay relationship.

How is tolerance of another human being elitist,” and what the hell does it have to do with Rome?

Count Me Red said...

Kevins,
I don't mind that you are liberal and proud, but there is no excuse for being ignorant. That pretty colored flag is known to the whole wide world as the "Gay Pride Flag". Google it and see. It means "I'm proud to be Gay". This is an awful message for children aged 13 to 17 and limits diversity to a discussion of sexual orientation. What about the rest of the definitions of diversity? If you want to talk about bullies, harassement, and assault, what about just talking about that? Don't kids that are fat, or tall, or thin, or handicapped have a right to go to school in peace as well? I don't think anybody should feel unsafe going to school. I think I will even add narrow minded to ignorant. How can you compare being Black to being Homosexual? You choose who you sleep with, it's a behavior. Are you for real? There is more sexually transmitted diseases, more suicide, more domestic violence, and earlier death among homosexuals than with heterosexuals, a proven scientific fact. We don't have to "tolerate" everything. What about pedophilia, rapists, religious extremists (the kind that fly planes into buildings), murderers, etc.? We don't have to accept or tolerate everything that anybody wants to do. Civilized people carefully choose what their children are exposed to. If you are an adult, sleep with dogs, I don't care. Children need our protection from dangerous folks like you. Next time you spew crap and call it fact, expect to be challenged. Nice chatting with you.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry to inform you Mr Angry Red that most cases of pedophilia and most rape cases are committed by heterosexuals. Your bias is just another case of plain old bigotry. Just like the L.O.V.E. group. A bunch of bigots plain and simple, count yourself among the bigots of the world and stop trying to make this a case of ethics.

Anonymous said...

By the way only the group of hate mongers declare this Flag a "Gay Pride" flag. It has been and continues to be a symbol of acceptance for everyone. We need to move beyond tolerance and be a culture of accepatance and love for all law abiding citizens. It's not against the law to be homosexual. Face up to your own hardness of your hearts and begin to accept and truly love all people.

Count Me Red said...

Anonymous,

Careful, you will burst a blood vessel in your neck. This is not about bigotry or hate. Your lack of valid argument continues to take you to these ugly words. That IS a gay pride flag. You cannot pull it up on the internet UNLESS you go to a gay/lesbian/transgender site! Period. It is absolutely NOT a symbol of acceptance. That would be the American Flag. Your flag universally means "I'm proud to be gay". That is NOT an acceptable message to children. I love all people, I just don't want you trying to influence or confuse children into thinking that having sex with the same gender is safe, or acceptable. You are the second person to say we "need to move past tolerance to acceptance". That must be the new buzz of the movement. Are you trying to kid us? You can try until hell freezes over and you will never be allowed to prey on the minds of our children without a fight. That apparently makes you angry. I agree that being homosexual is not against the law, but it is a choice you make, and it goes against the laws of nature and natures God. Don't try to make your choices valid and acceptable by making others think that to oppose your ideals makes them somehow hateful or bigots. You sound like the hateful ones when you sling around those words. I like this dialogue we are having. I feel enlightened, I hope you are too.

Anonymous said...

Kevins,
You said there has never been a PAC in a school board race beofre. You really should fact check before you make statements like that. The MEA has endorsed school board candidates every year, check their website. Also, they have funded candidates, placed signs, and provided feet on the ground, every single year. This year it will be more FAIR. What an exciting time to be an American.

patrick flynn said...

Kevin, How well do you know Gary Glenn? The man you refer to as a hatemonger couldn't be more of a gentleman. His wife and children positively exude peace, joy and happiness - a true indicator of a loving man. The left gets so upset that Gary speaks with authority and sincerety, that he backs up his presentation with credible data. The only thing left to damage his message is to attack him personally. Kevin, I just found out who you really are the other night. You ought to be ashamed of yourself.

I am a member of the Howell LOVE group as well. Thank God that Livingston County has such concerned and dedicated people on these front lines. It's what makes the quality of life here so high. I will match these people's love against anyone's concerning individuals suffering from same-sex attraction. They take the bold step, however, in separating the individual sufferer from the nasty gay political movement. The same political movement that has mercilessly sent so many of the members of their own ranks to their early deaths.

As for the Howell School Board. Keep it up! You're going to lose more and more students and more allocation dollars as you continue to force your harmful messages into the minds and hearts of those kids.

Kevins said...

Sorry, “count me red” – does that mean you’re a c communist – but the diversity flag means much more than a gay pride. The advisor of the HHS Diversity Club had an excellent Letter-to- the-editor in the P & A a while back about the background of the flag and where he actually got the flag. I wish I would have saved it, but I had no idea it would matter so much.

The flag does include gays, among lots of other groups, races and nationalities, but in no way does it encourage a lifestyle they have no control over. I agree with you 100 percent, kids who are “fat, or tall, or thin, or handicapped have a right to go to school in peace as well.” That’s what diversity is about, so why can’t a gay person have the same right?

How can I compare being Black to being Homosexual? Easy. They are born that way, and yes I am for real.

“There is more sexually transmitted diseases, more suicide, more domestic violence, and earlier death among homosexuals than with heterosexuals, a proven scientific fact.” Now who’s ignorant? That’s simply not true, and it most definitely is not a “proven scientific fact.” That’s about as stupid as barring gays from marrying and calling it “defense of marriage” when heterosexuals have a 50 percent divorce rate.

Yes, and “What about pedophilia, rapists, religious extremists (the kind that fly planes into buildings), murderers.” Those are all crimes, except religious extremists, of course. If that was the case guys like Gary Glenn would be in jail.

Red, The next time you spew crap and call it fact, expect to be challenged. Nice chatting with you.

Kevins said...

Well Mr. Anonymous, I did “fact check” when I said PACs have never been involved in local school board races. This is from the article that appeared in the Daily press & Argus about the “love” group’s Pac

“The activity of the LOVE PAC may be something unique in the world of school board elections. Brad Banasik, legal counsel for the Michigan Association of School Boards, said he had never heard of a PAC forming in a specific school district for a school election.
"Most board elections are considered to be nonpartisan," he said. "Your PACs tend to be involved in partisan issues. You may find a PAC in something like a recall election where they form to support the board members being recalled, but for a PAC to support a group of candidates or an individual candidate, that's the first I've ever heard of it."

What does that mean to you? The MEA does not endorse local school board candidates.

Kevins said...

Mr. Flynn, I talked to Gary Glenn on the phone once, and that was a memorable experience, but I have also read many, many examples of his intolerance of people different that himself.

As for you knowing who I am, great, but why do I care? And, what could I possibly be ashamed of?

I just find it so hard to understand how anyone, especially someone who calls himself a Christian, can reject tolerance and embrace intolerance?

And what should Howell Public Schools “keep up’ Mr. Flynn? Continue to educate every student who walks in the door, regardless of race, national origin, religion or sexual orientation? Continue to provide a safe campus for every student, even minority students? Yes, please HHS keep it up. And what message is it that they are pushing? That all people, even if they are different or in the minority, have a right to a safe environment? Good message.

It’s funny that you mention, “You're going to lose more and more students and more allocation dollars.” Funny choice of words.

Count Me Red said...

kevins,
You've been a busy boy, but still telling fibs and claiming fact I see. You should get out in the world and not just take your information from reading the newspaper. Mr. Norton is not the advisor to the diversity club, that would be Mrs. Casey. His article in the paper made a claim that is not true. The flag came from a gay pride parade. The flag that hangs in our high school IS a gay pride flag. Don't spew crap, go check it out. A gay pride flag represents gays and therefore limits the discussion of diversity. Why would getting a flag that is unique be such a terrible thing? It would then include everybody and broaden the definition of diversity. The reason they don't is because they are trying to advance an agenda. Why else would they go to the Supreme Court Case in Texas that essentially legalized homosexual sodomy to find the wording for their diversity resolution? Word for word, exactly. Because it was written by the Triangle Foundation. We may be older, but we are not stupid. Kevins, look for some facts. You don't have enough credibility to just make stuff up and be believed. I can sight you medical journals and studies that have been done on diseases and homosexual domestic violence. Also, Blacks are born black, I agree. Homosexuals CHOOSE to sleep with the same sex. Sex is an activity you choose to do. And who you choose to do it with is also a choice. Are you crazy? You think homosexuals are born sexing? What about bi's or beastiology? Sometimes you feel like a guy, sometimes you don't? Sometimes you feel like a horse, sometimes you don't? Come on Kevins. And what you do as an adult is totally different than trying lure in the children. You think if everybody does it it would make it more right? Now that would be civilized. I thank Mr. Flynn for standing up for Gary Glenn. He is a man dedicated to his family, his community, and his country. His fight to protect the children from predators like you is honorable, and, might I add, successful. For every common sense thing I have ever heard him say, your side takes the hateful, vile, ungodly road. Thank God he has thick skin and hundreds of thousands of supporters and contributors. He doesn't hate anyone or say hateful things, he says the truth, however blunt that may sound to you. You just want to do what you want to do, with whomever you want to do it to and be totally unchecked or unchallenged. Well, that won't happen. Is there anyone else out there with some thoughts? Kevins sounds like a broken record and lacks credibility to speak on the subject.

patrick flynn said...

Kevin, When I said that I found out who you were, I meant your profession. When I said you should be ashamed of yourself, I was referring to your defaming Gary Glenn.

If you are one of so many people experiencing same-sex attraction, no, you should not be ashamed of your inclinations and emotions. But, you were not born with this.

I have been close to many same-sex attracted men and women. The ones who chose to follow the gay culture's recipe for happiness are not happy and many are dead. The ones who realized that this culture was lying to them and investigated other avenues to peace, happiness and contentment are on a journey to understanding. They are beginning to understand what they are feeling, why they are feeling these things and real, viable and healthy behavioral options to take control of their lives.

The message that the Howell Board is sending to the kids is that choosing same-sex behavior (behavior, not inclinations) is a healthy choice. And, statistically and practically speaking, that is a lie.

Kevins said...

Well red, despite accusing me of lying, it’s not going to hold water, and yes I have been busy. It’s no picnic trying to correct the misinformation on this blog against so much spin, but someone has to. Homosexuality does have a biological cause; at least the American Psychological Association thinks so.

I stand corrected on History teacher Doug Norton, but I said I couldn’t recall the exact wording of the letter. I did find it, and yes, he is not the advisor of the Diversity Club, but he donated the flag in question. Here’s what he said.

“I purchased that flag, which is a rainbow flag, about 15 years ago
from a catalog of products promoting progressive causes. As I recall,
this was around the time that the PUSH organization was using the
rainbow as a symbol for its Rainbow Coalition. It was advertised in
that catalog that the flag stood for tolerance toward people of all
stripes and colors, as it still does today.

I displayed that flag in my classroom for about five years before
moving to a portable classroom where there was no wall space available
for it.

During the entire time that I displayed that flag, it was never once
suggested that I was flying a gay-pride flag or that I was somehow
promoting a gay lifestyle. When asked about its meaning, I explained
that it stood for diversity and tolerance. I never claimed it stood
for gay pride, because it didn't.”

I agree with you on one issue. Maybe we should get rid of the flag or find another to replace it that shows diversity, even thoough it is not a gay pride flag. Only as long as we maintain the tolerance of gays at the school. That’s the bottom line, and then the “love” group can find sonmone else to be intolerant of.
Talk abiout personal attacks, now I’m a preadator? Get real. What are you basing your myth on about homosexuals being child molestors on? Oh, I know, the myth put forward by intolerant men like you and gary glenn.

Kevins said...

Mr. Flynn I can think of no profession that does not allow you to have an opinion or to express that opinion. And I certainly am not ashamed of speaking the truth about gary glenn.

No, sir, the message the Howell School Board is sending to the students is that every child, no mater if they look, act or have different friends than you, is entitled to come to school and be safe from harassment, violence and hate.

Republican Michigander said...

Because of my position with the Concerned Taxpayers' Group, I am not going to comment positively or negatively on the LOVE Group here except to say two things.

1. Disclosure - I am not a member and have no attended any meetings of the LOVE Group.

2. I have no problem with them or any group being part of the political process forming a PAC. More people should be active in school issues. I remember a pathetic 3% turnout for a CONTESTED race when I lived in Brighton. My parents and I, 3 people, were 1% of the electorate. I have no problem with the LOVE Group, Taxpayers, Teachers organizations, PTA/PTO's, or Political Party's being involved in these races. It raises awareness, and that is what is needed.

Switching topics, I think it's safe to assume that nobody here supports bullying. That said what this resolution does towards bullying is absolutely nothing. Resolutions are talk. It's easy for the board or any governmental entity to pass a resolution and pat themselves on the back.

That said, in my own experience, the only thing bullies truely understand is a punch in the mouth. Unfortunately, punching out a bully will garner a 10 day suspension - no matter who starts the fight. Looking back, it really isn't a big deal, but to a 16 year old kid, it certainly is.

I'd like to a return to the old days where both sides get boxing gloves and duke it out under school supervision. I think that would reduce a lot of bullying. Unfortunately, it'll never happen in my lifetime. Until it does, bullies are a protected species in school.

Count Me Red said...

Kevins,
I see a crack in your armor. Mr. Norton did purchase the flag 15 years ago, but because it was a gay pride flag and not because of Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Push since their flag looks like a rainbow (arched). A different flag would make all this go away. A unique flag that represents everyone. That makes more sense to all of us, but not to the school board who refuses the road of reason. NO CHILD SHOULD GO TO SCHOOL AND FEEL UNSAFE.
Kevins, I don't think that homosexuals are predators. I don't know where you got that. I think the Activist Group, Triangle Foundation, is trying to go to the schools to soften up their opinions toward homosexuals because they are trying to find the voters they need to get the rights they want. I think that confusing children or using them to advance your agenda is unfair and predatory. I don't think homosexuals are predatory. I think the powers that be want what they want at whatever cost. Our job as parents is to protect our children from that sort of thing. Our schools don't say that every child can come to school and feel safe. It says that homosexuals can. That's our point. Take on bullying and teasing and name calling directly. Don't enter the subject at the expense of using sexual orientation. They are actually using homosexuals to advance a point. Stop using children, period. Let's just deal with the problems that a whole bunch of children have to deal with on a regular basis. Christian kids are also teased. Can't we not offend anyone as we try to find our way toward a kinder and gentler world?

Anonymous said...

Michigan Votes the MEA PAC does endorese local school board candidates and I am sure they will this time as well. www.michiganvotes.org

Kevins said...

I fail to see the “crack in my armor.” I said I wasn’t sure what the letter said or who wrote it, but once I found the letter it was clear it was written by the man who donated the flag and it was not a gay pride flag. Why don’t we get rid of the flag? Fine, but that won’t change the discrimination against some HHS students by this group, and why bow to a group that stands for prejudice?

How can you honestly say you don’t think, “homosexuals are predatory” when you tried to insult me by saying I was a predator?

The school is saying every students should be able to come to school and be safe, straight, gay, Christian, atheist, Jewish and Muslim. I don’t see anyone using the children. The idea of the flag was their idea.

I will never say never, but you’re going to have to prove to me the MEA endorses local school board candidates. I have been around school board races and vote regularly in them, and I have never seen the MEA endorse. I checked their web site, and found nothing. I regularly visit michiganvotes.org, and there is nothing there about the MEA. It’s an excellent website to find out how your state Senator or Representative voted, but nothing else. The MEA is a union and state association, and they all have PACs and lobbyists, just like the UAW or the Michigan Retailers Association. They endorse and contribute money to Senate and House races, and statewide offices, including the state Board of Education.

Count Me Red said...

kevins -
By "crack in your armour", I meant that you are talking more and spewing less. Most admirable. That hateful stuff takes away your credibility. I also like that you admit that it is possible that hanging "that flag" just might be taking the conversation away from bullying, teasing, and name calling, and bringing it to one subject, homosexuality. When I think ALL kids need the same protections. Lots of kids go to school and feel unsafe. That is awful. NO child, no matter what, should feel unsafe or unloved in a public school. Let's just address the right thing. Realizing that Christian children feel insulted and degraded to have to walk underneath a gay pride flag as they travel the halls of their school. Let's not do that either. Let's say that ALL kids should get to go to school peacefully. That flag is divisive. When there is a disagreement as deep as this, should one side dig in their heels and not listen, or can we teach our kids how to negotiate their way through problems and let the ideas flow, with the stated objective that in the end, everyone can go to school and feel safe? If we could be civilized and respectful, we could make that happen. I think everyone wins that way. I want you to know, that it is very disturbing to me that you continue to assign hateful thoughts and intentions to LOVE. This is a group that I am a member of. I have never seen you at a meeting, nor have you called any of our members to talk to them. You are making a giant leap by saying you know what they stand for or what is in their hearts. I can guarantee you that it has no hateful intentions, but rather seeks to find a way for unity and security to be returned to our schools and our community. It does no one any good to call such ugly names. Empty arguments and misconceptions cause hate to be spread and the truth to be hidden.We didn't like seeing kids suspended from school, not able to graduate with their class, thinking vandalism is okay if you paint nice words, painting ugly words on rocks, etc. It seemed out of control. We tried to talk to the school about it, but unless you are patting them on the back for a job well done, they don't want to hear you. We never wanted homosexuals to go away or be banished, we want another group of kids to have the same attention to their feelings. You might not believe in God, but some people do and they have a right to. Let's not make it right or wrong. Let's just say it is so. Some people don't believe in homosexuality, but let's not make it right or wrong. Let's just make it so. The predators are the ones that are using both sides to an end. These are children. You cannot push on them a particular side of a social agenda. If you try to do that, you are a predator. The predators are not at the school, they are the ones using the school to advance a lifestyle that is confusing and dangerous. Let's let families work that out. Your predatory behavior was in spewing crap and lies to make your side of this issue be true. It is not okay to confuse or present one side of a story to impressionable children. I think if they could all interact with each other without trying to cram acceptance down someones throat, it would be better. Let the kids interact and see that there is nothing to fear. But the school has dug in their heels and refused to find a way to a solution. Kids need leadership. Their leaders were cooking hotdogs on the lawn and holding signs. "Because I said so" won't work with kids. The teachers have staged sit-ins to force acceptance. What a bunch of nuts.
By the way, meavotes.org is the teacher union PAC. Their website always endorses. Just recently they took down Jeanne Clum from last year. They have not put up this year's candidates because they have not publicly endorsed yet. Just keep watching. It's okay for them to do that, but then it is also okay for other groups to do the same. That is good for the process and also very fair and accepting.
You are liberal, I am conservative. I don't hate you, and I hope you don't hate me. We just disagree on certain issues. Almost all of them. But can't we show kids how this works by being civilized? Thanks for letting me go on and on. Have a great day.

Count Me Red said...

kevins, believe it or not, I forgot an important point. The school is NOT saying its okay for all kids to come to school and be safe. They are saying gay kids can come to school and be safe. The Traditional Values club has tried for almost 2 years to be recognized, without school assistance. In fact they blocked them at every turn until just recently, with the help of LOVE they were able to stand up their club. It took another couple of months for their flag to be accepted. See what I mean. No equality. Kids don't like unfairness, none of them. Anyway, things are on the right track now.

Kevins said...

Red, I don’t think you are reading this blog close enough. I have been personally insulated everything I posted, and a few times I gave back what I got. That hardly equates to “spewing.”

Why would “Christian children feel insulted and degraded to have to walk underneath a (gay pride flag) – but it’s actually a diversity flag- as they travel the halls of their school.” I remember from going to Sunday school, Jesus loved accepted everyone, not just those exactly like him.

I’m sorry you’re upset that I don’t support the “love” pac, but, as I said before, I am intolerant of intolerance, and discrimination against gays is intolerance, it’s that simple. Far too many times the words “traditional values” are code words for discrimination. What are traditional values? At one time we had Jim Crow laws, blacks could not vote and it was thought a Catholic could not be president. Is that the kind of traditions you are talking about? The people at the Westboro Baptist Church that protest at soldier’s funerals spout “traditional values” too. I want to go forward, not back.

Who is trying to “push on them a particular side of a social agenda?” Not me or the school. This is simply telling kids that are different from them that they have a right to go to school without facing harassment. It’s that simple. I have never heard of teachers holding a sit in to “force acceptance.” If they did I would be right there with them. Actually, that’s a pretty good way to gain acceptance, and African-Americans held sit-ins at lunch counters to break Jim Crow. This is just a different kind of discrimination. I cannot understand why anyone cannot accept someone who is different.

I stand corrected on the MEA, and thank you for giving me that web site. It’s too bad I didn’t already know whom I was going to vote for this time. It would have been a big help. It’s funny I never heard of that before. I pay close attention to all races, and I have not missed a school board election since I moved here. I also read\ at least three newspapers every day and I never heard of it. Heck, I voted for Jeanne Clum because I knew her. I don’t know how they “took her down” if someone who pays attention didn’t even hear of them “targeting her.” The MEA is a union/bargaining unit. Suggesting to their members who to vote for hardly seems sinister, and it certainly supports what Brad Banasik, legal counsel for the Michigan Association of School Boards, when he said he had never heard of a PAC forming in a specific school district for a school election.

I’m sorry, but the school IS saying its okay for all kids to come to school and be safe. I don’t know anything about the “Traditional Values club,: but again, what traditional values are we talking about? Racism? You know, kids can be cruel and tease each other. A kid may be humiliated by someone calling and teasing him or her about being a virgin or a “goodytwoshoes.” That is unacceptable, but homosexuals have not only been teased because they are gay, they have been killed and beaten because of it. That’s a huge, huge difference.

Anonymous said...

Kevin:

What unites us as Americans is a belief that everyone should be treated with respect.

You might find this interesting reading:

http://www.pratt4schoolboard.com/reference/consensus.guidelines.pdf

It's a set of guidelines developed for dealing with the issue of sexual orientation in public school settings that is endorsed by the First Amendment Center, the American Association of School Administrators, the Christian Educators Association International; and the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN).

It is an attempt to bring some light to the discussion, about how we each can see the issue without it having to fall into a "us vs. them" level.

In the Howell issue, continued tension exists because the parties are talking AT each other, rather than WITH each other. LOVE people only asked that consideration be given to those who hold a view that issues of sexual orientation don't belong in public schools. That is a position of personal, moral conviction. Just as you would most likely say that gay kids should not be subject to discrimination based on their values, the LOVE parents group asked only that their kids be given the same consideration. At the moment, that is not taking place.

It seems everyone on "that side" is thinking that there is a hate group involved. I can tell you that is not the case. No one hates anyone. Everyone has good motives, but it is there perceptions that are coloring the issue. The newspaper is not helping, by inflaming an issue which is sensitive to many in the community. And the school baor dis not helping matters either, thinking that simply by declaring certain moral principles, that solves all the issues. It's much, much too complex.

If everyone just listened a little more to what the other side was actually saying, and was willing to recongize that they have so much more in common than what they have as differences, we would all be much better off.

There is a way to find common ground. And that starts with listening to all sides, and respecting the differences we all have. We don't have to agree on everything, but at least we have to agree that the "other side" is not an evil empire, but rather that we are all just people who are trying to do what we think is in the best interest of the future of kids.

And as "just people", we can do better.

Agreed?

Kevins said...

This was the editoral in the LCDP & A today. This from an editorial board that consists of at least one member who was once a conservative republician canmdidate for the state house.

It's rare — and perhaps unprecedented — for political action committees to be formed with the idea of influencing a local school board race.
One — the LOVE PAC — wants to encourage the election of candidates who support what the organization refers to as its traditional values. In essence, the group — formed last spring — is opposed to the display of a diversity flag at the high school, which its members believe is an endorsement of homosexuality.
The LOVE group, for instance, is fixated on the diversity flag and the belief that Howell school leaders have some vested interest in promoting some sort of homosexual agenda.
"You can't have something hanging on the wall as controversial as that flag has been and not have a dialogue with the people who are angry about it," said LOVE spokesperson Vicki Fyke.
We could suggest that the so-called controversy over the flag is pretty much generated by those who reject the school's position that it's a diversity flag. To say that there hasn't been a dialogue on the subject seems a bit disingenuous. There's been a lot of dialogue. There just hasn't been the result that LOVE desires.
Fyke seemingly agrees. She told a Daily Press & Argus reporter last week that "if they won't run (the district) the way we want it run, then we're going to put some people in there who will."
That's not a search for dialogue; that's a desire for control. It's LOVE's right, but it should be recognized for what it is.

Kevins said...

Mr. Prattt, I had no idea that the children of the “love” parents were being discriminated against. On what basis are they being discriminated against? There is a huge difference between discrimination and peer pressure, and many people believe positive peer pressure is a good thing.
Obviously, no issue is completely black and white, but for me this is the bottom line, I am intolerant of intolerance, and what you are advocating is discrimination. It’s that simple. All too often, the words “traditional values” are code words for discrimination, and all too often, the messenger – in this case – one of the local daily newspapers – is being blamed. I’m not saying you are a hate group, but your group is pushing discrimination against one group of kids.

Anonymous said...

Kevin said..." I had no idea that the children of the “love” parents were being discriminated against. On what basis are they being discriminated against? "
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Kevin, the kids in question believe that they have been discriminated against on the basis of their religious beliefs. They tried to explain that they did not feel comfortable having that rainbow flag to represent them. But they were told they “had to accept” that this flag represented everyone, including them. That cut at and interfered with their deeply held moral beliefs.

They only asked that they not have to be told that the rainbow flag represents them. "Positive peer pressure" of name calling, or being told that their deepest religious beliefs were "incorrect" is the basis for their issue.

You say that you are "intolerant of intolerance."

Great. Then you would agree that no one should use the power of legal authority (school policy) to intentionally force someone to accept moral principles they do not agree with. You would be... tolerant.. of someone's moral beliefs that are not your own? I would hope so.

You stated " All too often, the words “traditional values” are code words for discrimination,"

I encourage you to study the values statement that the LOVE group agreed upon. There are no "code words" there. Here is a link to the site:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/LOVE-Howell/

The "traditional values" that the group came to consensus over are:
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* True Diversity- civil rights, not special rights

* Student health and safety- promotion of lifestyle choices of behaviors that protect the mental, physical, and emotional health of our children as students

* Traditional Marriage- 1 man and 1 woman

* Personal Integrity- Doing what's right legally, morally, and ethically and being accountable for our actions

* Honesty- The basis for all relationships both public and private. It is being honest, telling the truth, and keeping your word.

* Patriotism- Support of the United States, which includes its history, its institutions, symbols, freedoms, and liberties.
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I'll start with the first one, and what it means to me:

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* True Diversity- civil rights, not special rights
================================
What is means to ME is that all people are created equal, and deserve an equal chance at making it in America. Martin Luther King dreamed of a day when all God's children would be judged not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. What a wonderful dream. That everyone would be given equal rights, and no one group be given advantage over another.

That is an ideal I believe we all should strive towards.

Let me give you a little background on myself.

We are all products of our experiences in life. I spent 21 years in military, in a "civil rights" environment like this: Everybody was "green", there was no "black" or "white", or anything else. We had a rank structure, but as far as judging another person's ability, you gave a man (or woman) the respect they had earned simply by being a fellow soldier. No one was given preferential treatment, because everyone has the same ability to excel based on individual achievement. Your assignments were made by someone who didn't even know what color you were, or what your family history was. They only knew that you are a (fill in the blank, a sergeant, who was an electronic technician; a lieutenant, who was an infantry platoon leader, etc). and they let you rise as fast or as slow as your inherent talent would take you. Every person who came from a different background added to the diverse mix of ideas and creativity. And no one got any special treatment because of their ethnic background, or the fact that they were a man or a woman. We were all soldiers. "Green soldiers." Not black, not white, not Hispanic, not anything else. Just people with something in common- an opportunity to excel, and defend our great constitutional republic. A dedication to fairness and based soley on merit and personally accomplsihment. I lived in that society for 21 years. And then I get plunked back down into the "civilian" society here, where people are not talking to each other, but are, instead, making assumptions about motives that don't exist. We are much, much more capable of being able to respect each other's personal beliefs, and learning from each other, that what appears to be the case here, now.

And THAT is what “True diversity- civil rights, not special rights” means to me.

If you came to the LOVE meetings, you would have heard that discussion. But it seems everyone is putting a sinister motive to something that they did not come hear for themselves.

What do you think? I could explain what the others mean to me, if you are interest in listening.

And I would be interested in hearing what you value. Care to share?

Kevins said...

I’m assuming the beliefs you claim these kids are being persecuted for are their Christian beliefs. So, you’re trying to tell me that the majority religion is being discriminated against. So, the minority is discriminating against the majority.

The rainbow flag does represent them because they are one part of the diverse population being celebrated. But actually it’s a moot point because this “traditional values club” was allowed to hang their flag along side the diversity flag. Imagine how the kids who are gay, or anyone this club doesn’t think should be treated fairly, feel when they walk by that flag. I’m not into flags and symbols anyway because, after all, its just cloth, and the ideals are what are important, but the new flag is one that celebrates discrimination.

But I guess now that the school bowed to the pressure of a vocal minority and hung the flag of discrimination, the “love” group will now go away.

I said it many times and I’ll say it again, the words “traditional values” all too often are code words for discrimination, and that appears to be the case here. I don’t see anyone but your group asking for “special rights.” I also have a similar background, spending 20 yeas in the Navy, and for the most part, the military is colorblind. It doesn’t matter what color the person is if he can do the job, and during the 90’s it didn’t matter what his or her sexual preference was.

Why would I attend a meeting of a group that I disagree with, and from what I have read I would not be welcome anyway.

What are my values?
Fairness –All men, and women, are created equal, and they should be free to enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
· Student health and safety- allowing a student to live with the preference he was born with or comfortable with without the fear of violence or harassment that leads to suicide and other mental health problems.
· * Marriage- I don’t believe the government has any right to tell me who I, or anyone else, should marry.
· * Patriotism- Support of the United States, and holding the greatest country in the world to the highest standard.

Count Me Red said...

Kevins -

You would be welcome to a LOVE meeting.
I agree with you, no flags would be best. But if we have to have flags, why not everyone's flag? It's nice to hear you talk about stuff. We probably all think what we think is the only way to think. Can't we teach the kids how to talk to each other kindly so that they can discover everyone's world for themselves. You know kids, you can't cram things down their throat. You must lead them gently. No one is leading. I would just like to broaden the discussion of teasing, bullying and name calling to include Everyone that needs cover. What just happened with the TVC club getting their flag is an example of diversity, including everyone. We either need more flags, or we need more conversation. I'm praying for the conversation.

Kevins said...

That’s a little disingenuous, because you know I would not be welcome at a “love” meeting. The editor of the newspaper was denied membership. If you want to have a traditional values clubs, fine, although the only traditional value I see them embracing is bigotry.
Somehow, they think the diversity flag doesn’t include them, so that means to me two choices. Either they think they are too god to be included with everyone else, or they don’t think they are part of everyone else because it includes a group of people they don’t like. Either way, it’s still discrimination.

Really, the flag violates the First Amendment. The cross represents the Christian religion, and the First Amendment, as you know, bans the government from establish or endorsing a religion. But, let it stay there.