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My child my choice

Discussion in 'Education news' started by moscowbore, Jun 7, 2019.

  1. hisir

    hisir New commenter

    What a revolting reply.
  2. neddyfonk

    neddyfonk Lead commenter

    Looking on the bright side: All religions eventually yield to some degree and relax dress codes, their stance on divorce, abortion or the acceptance of 'people of a different colour' etc. When did we last have a demonstration about Temperance? At the end of the day, most religions would rather bend than lose followers.
  3. dreamweaverplusactor

    dreamweaverplusactor New commenter

    I have yet to see num3bers refer to any peer-reviewed studies showing that sexuality is a choice. You'd think that someone so concerned with 'the facts' would actually present some. And if it is true, it's strange that in places like the Sudan, where you can be put to death for the 'repeat offence' of being homosexual, people still will do it to be with the person they love.

    And the 'facts don't care about your feelings' is just lifted from Ben Shapiro. Stop spewing the stuff you've watched on Youtube.

    I think the crux of the matter, and why the parents should not have a say, is that all the children are taught is that gay people exist. Take out the word 'gay' and replace it with any other demographic, and it makes it obvious why the protests are ridiculous.

    I wonder how the parents would feel if references to Muslims existing were taken out of any part of the curriculum.
  4. englishtt06

    englishtt06 Occasional commenter

    But you also have an agenda - and this statement equally applies to you.

    Facts are always subject to interpretation (and selection). It is a generally-agreed fact that 1 in 10 of the population identifies as LGBT+ (although this varies depending on which research one consults: some studies say 1 in 4. Interesting that both figures are 'facts', no?).

    Either way, apart from a tiny minority, almost-all LGBT+ people grew up in 'straight' families and, for many, without benefit of any LGBT+ education (Section 28 etc.) or very little - if any - exposure to gay lifestyles (apart from Colin from Eastenders on the telly). So, it's alarming that so many 'chose' to become this way. In fact, I've never heard any LGBT+ people say they 'chose' to be this way. Human nature generally dictates that we take the path of least-resistance: why would people actively choose a path of sometimes-deadly resistance? Ask yourself this: could you be gay/lesbian if you 'chose' to be? Can you picture yourself living with and having intercourse with somebody of the same sex?

    Out of interest, it would be interesting to see where your 'facts' come from that support LGBT+ people 'choosing' their 'lifestyle'? Can you provide some links to credible sources (note: credible)? There are some fascinating studies that examine same-sex relationships in different cultures (in every culture, actually, all the way through antiquity): what changes is how it is defined and accepted. Biologists, zoologists, anthropologists will tell you it exists everywhere in nature and all forms of society: even in environments or communities where there is no reason for 'choice'.

    In terms of this debate around the Birmingham schools, I'm not being particularly original in my next point but, as many commentators have pointed out in the wider media, for primary-aged children this is nothing to do with sex (in a procreation sense) and just relationships. As a wise poster has noted already on this thread - the extent of LGBT+ education for children this young is "there are lots of different types of families, sometimes two men live together, sometimes two women live together, sometimes a parent is on their own, most children live with one mother and one father" ... seems pretty innocuous to me.

    As an secondary English teacher, we cover a lot of social and historical context (which is a mixed bag of history, sociology, RE, psychology and PSHCE). As an example, I have to teach aspects of Marx and Marxism at GCSE and A Level. To my knowledge, none of my students have pledged themselves to be communist; it also hasn't 'normalised' Marxism.

    Let's give teachers and children a bit of credit - we don't (and can't) protect students from the world, we teach them how to protect themselves in the world and be well-rounded citizens who treat others with respect. This can only come through understanding; and that comes through knowledge. Knowledge and understanding about how we come to be ourselves and how others can be different from us whether that be through creed, religion or sexuality (there are, of course, many many other criteria by which we are all 'different') and how that's perfectly fine, too. The level of what we teach (in terms of content, depth and complexity) varies as the student matures - this is exactly what a well-designed and planned curriculum should do (and does!).
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2019
  5. num3bers

    num3bers Occasional commenter

    This is a holding note. I have to go to work now this week ( today was my day off). I am out all day tomorrow and working the rest of the week. I will get back on the queries when I have time. My job has to take priority over this social media stuff.
  6. Lalex123

    Lalex123 Established commenter

    Missbubbleblue, agathamorse and JL48 like this.
  7. NoseyMatronType

    NoseyMatronType Star commenter

    M. Steven Fish's book Are Muslims Distinctive: A Look at the Evidence (about as fair minded a publication as you will find on this issue) confirms that Muslims are unusually averse to homosexuality.

    What is interesting about this is that the textbooks for the new GCSE courses steer clear of controversy and simply echo the view that homosexuality is not morally acceptable.

    This arguably pusillanimous attitude on the part of publishers bothers me. I think it is possible to study the 'hot button' issues (that also include the status of women, FGM, jihad etc.) that currently surround the faith without denigrating Islam and in a manner that still presents it as a profound and inspiring one.

    This year my GCSE students included several Muslims. They had no problems looking at gay and bisexual perspectives from within their own faith. For any Religious Studies teachers interested in tracking these down, Irshad Manji and filmmaker and author Parvez Sharma are interesting. Sharma's movies 'A Sinner in Mecca' and 'A Jihad for Love' are both available on DVD (I think) but would have to be imported. The trailers are on YouTube. I am leaving teaching at the end of this term and only found about Sharma after my Year 11's had departed on study leave. So they would need checking that the content is age appropriate.

    There is also the famously hellraising, bisexual Islamic (it is appropriate to designate him as such rather than as merely 'Arabic') bard Abu Nuwas to consider. Here's a sample of his poetry:

    I Miss Al-Hira*
    By God, I dearly miss
    Al-Hira and its wine
    And the ‘oud strings’ sound at dawn
    As the church bells chime,
    And I miss the taverns at
    The sacrifice time**
    And spending, on drink and
    Beardless youths, my every dime
    By God, were you to hear
    The Poems I’ve devised
    Their splendour would leave you in
    Despair till your demise

    *formerly a famous centre for Nestorian Christianity in Iraq

    My guess is that the protests are being directed by Muslims with a far more conservative, Salafi or Deobandi-inflected outlook.

    As far as the issue of when it is appropriate for pupils should be introduced too LGBT issues and what form the learning material should assume, I am not in a position to say as I am not a specialist in Primary education. However, I once took an interest in the question of when and by what means tolerant and helping attitudes are instilled.

    Samuel and Pearl Oliner studied people who had rescued Jews in Nazi-occupied Europe and compared them with similarly placed people who had not given such help. They found, unsurprisingly, that their rescuers cared more than the others about people outside their families. Less obviously, the rescuers' upbringing had been different from the others. The parents of the rescuers had set high standards for their children, especially about caring for others, but had not been strict. The emphasis was on reasoning rather than discipline.

    So from the Oliner’s study, we learn that the virtues of caring for others and rationality seem to last if they are taught early, which in turn suggests that if the right kind of virtues are instilled in childhood, those who have acquired them stand a greater chance of withstanding the kind of pressures to conform to different standards that might be exerted on them later on.
    Laphroig, Alice K and agathamorse like this.
  8. Teslasmate

    Teslasmate Occasional commenter

    agathamorse likes this.
  9. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

  10. aypi

    aypi Senior commenter

    I am not sure Jehovah's Witnesses should be allowed to keep children, they sound as abusive as nuns and protestant children's homes.
  11. ajrowing

    ajrowing Lead commenter

    The Jevhovah witnesses I know are not the least abusive to their child. (I would say that I'm friends with, but they aren't allowed to be friends with non-believers, doesn't stopped their son playing with my daughter in a perfectly normal way, or sitting round chatting whilst they do).
  12. averagedan

    averagedan Occasional commenter

    Are people really having the "being gay is a choice" argument? Who gives a damn if it is or isn't a choice. It's about society being tolerant of anything which happens between consenting adults and causes no harm. It's about not judging others and loving one another irrelevant of if you would live their life the way they do. And that is the focus of the primary education lessons "don't judge, be tolerant of difference and love each other".

    Then again that Spot the Dog style book of a child with two mums who love each other and look after their child well is outrageous. I mean won't somebody think of the children who will see that and think it's okay? A supportive family unit with two women in charge is crazy. How will they live without a man?

    While we're about it my husband and I have been thinking about stoning ourselves to death as we're gay. According to the religious text we were reading we're supposed to get the whole town together to take part. Do you think it would be okay to send out a mass invite via e-mail to 12 million people? Do we need to provide food? I mean I suppose we could do something simple with pasta.

    Irony aside - people have had arguments about saying the word Jehovah, wearing two fibres, being racist, misogynistic, etc. We just have to trust that eventually people will see bigotry for what it is and reject it. It takes time for people to come to terms with change, all this will blow over and the UK will remember the value of tolerance.
    agathamorse and Missbubbleblue like this.
  13. harsh-but-fair

    harsh-but-fair Star commenter

    Who are the least abusive to their child?
  14. averagedan

    averagedan Occasional commenter

    Being someone who isn't capable of bringing up a child and a Jehovah's witness are two different things in my opinion. My husband's family are JHs and they're not my cup of tea but they're not child abusers.
  15. catmother

    catmother Star commenter

    Spot on.
  16. HouseOfCommons

    HouseOfCommons New commenter

    The House of Commons Library has recently published a briefing on sex and relationships education in England.

    It gives an overview of the current rules on what has to be taught by local authority maintained schools, and the parental right to withdraw children.

    It also covers changes planned for 2020 including:
    • All primary schools in England teaching ‘Relationships Education’
    • All secondary schools teaching ‘Relationships and Sex Education’
    • Reformed statutory guidance, following consultation
    • Retaining the parental right of withdrawal from sex education, with new rights for children to ‘opt-in’ as they approach age 16
    • Flexibility for schools in their approach, including for faith schools to teach within the tenets of their faith
    The Library regularly publishes briefings, insights and other materials to give MPs and the public access to impartial information about a range of issues and topics. In the last week, education briefings were published about early intervention policies, children's mental health services, school term times, and music education in England.

    You can sign up to receive notifications every time research is published about a range of topics.”
    bajan likes this.

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