Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Rum, Sodomy and your 13-year old daughter: Bill Muehlenberg weighs into the education debate

Bill Muehlenberg has posted on the case of the Queensland schoolgirl which established once and for all that, in a so-called secular democracy, irrational bigotry will be defended--and even pandered to with stomach-turning obsequiousness--as long as the bigot uses "Christianity" as an excuse. (I wrote about it here.)

I had initially left my response at his site, but Bill has a comments policy that reads thus: "This site is meant to express my point of view. If you are looking for a soapbox to promote your own views, create your own website or blog site." That, friends, is code for "dissenting views will be deleted." (See Ninglun's thoughts on this.) So I doubt that my comment will remain for long. Here's what I had to say, and apologies if I am repeating myself:

The latest outrage concerns a 13-year-old school girl who was failed because she refused to write an assignment on life in a gay community.

The assignment asked students to imagine what it would be like to be a heterosexual living in a mainly gay colony on the Moon, in order to explore what it is like to be part of a minority. Try not to misrepresent the situation: it only makes you seem dishonest.

The stranglehold of political correctness, secular humanism and leftist ideology seems to grow by the day.

Utter hypocritical garbage, Bill. That the school was eventually forced to withdraw the assignment in order to placate one student’s bigotry is a clear-cut case of the right-wing political correctness that threatens to hold the education system–not to mention to ability of professional educators to do their jobs–to ransom. (If the Howard government gets its way, that is.)

I mean–what next? Shall we ban the use of Mississippi Burning or Rabbit-Proof Fence in schools, lest we offend some racists? Shall we proscribe all mention of the Holocaust in case the sensitivities of Nazi students are compromised? Shall we banish evolution from the science classroom, so that the same Queensland schoolgirl doesn’t have to find her beliefs “challenged” in biology? (Wait a minute–you want that, don’t you?)

This is just another glaring example of how brainwashing and indoctrination have increasingly replaced education in our school system. We seem not to be concerned about getting our kids to think, to read, to count, and to master basic concerpts. (sic) Instead, we seem to want our children to be PC zombies, all mouthing and living the same PC dictates.

Oh, the irony. What was it the girl’s mother said? Oh, that’s right:

“She was being challenged, but she should not be challenged like that at her age.”

We don’t want our children to be PC zombies. We want them to be Christian zombies. Got it.

And to make matters worse, the students in the class were warned not to tell their parents about the assignment. I wonder why.

Stupidity and cowardice on the part of the school. It had nothing to be ashamed of, and it had nothing to hide.

UPDATE: A commenter at Bill's has helpfully provided a link to the curriculum document in which this assignment appears. Plenty in there for fundies and homophobes to scream about, yes. But what is patently clear is that the assignment in question provides--or should have provided--a facility for students to reflect upon and articulate how their own values, attitudes and beliefs shape their response.

UPDATE II: Iain Hall has a post on this topic. I'd be careful, though. If he feels that the debate isn't going his way, he's likely to slap you with one of these:

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