In rural, small-town Iowa, a group of parents and community leaders is seeking to prevent students from the local taxpayer-funded middle school and high school from attending future versions of an anti–bullying conference for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender teens.
The last one — in April — left many of the denizens of Humboldt, Iowa up in arms, reports Des Moines NBC affiliate WHO-TV.
Iowa Safe Schools, an activist group out of Des Moines, hosted the conference.
It was quite something.
Among the nearly two dozen speakers, “only two” addressed bullying, one attendee estimated, according to EAGnews.org.
The rest of the sessions involved issues such as “how to pleasure their gay partners.”
Middle school girls from Humboldt (pop.: 4,690) had the opportunity to learn “how to sew fake testicles into their underwear in order to pass themselves off as boys.”
One speaker wore a dress made out of condoms to which could be “used as needed.” . . .
Nate Monson, executive director of Iowa Safe Schools, said parents who worry about middle school kids hearing about anal sex with strap-ons and analingus are “disgusting.”
“It’s incredibly frustrating that adults are being the problem and being the bully,” Monson told the Des Moines NBC affiliate. “
If I were a parent in this district, I would not stop until heads rolled. I looked up Iowa Safe Schools, the organization that sponsored this “event,” and discovered that, despite a moniker suggesting that it’s aimed at reducing bullying, it’s actually a LGBT promotion organization, with its mission statement as follows:
The mission of Iowa Safe Schools is to: a) improve school climate in order to increase the personal safety, mental health, and student learning of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and allied (LGBTA) and all other students; b) increase awareness and understanding among current and future educators, school administrators, and key community agents of inequities regarding the safety of LGBTA students and their family member(s) in schools and communities throughout Iowa. Iowa Safe Schools also seeks to empower these key actors with effective, research-based tools and strategies to combat intolerance and safety inequities.
No one wants LGBT–or any other kids–to be bullied at school. But there is a huge difference between promoting LGBT tolerance and promoting LGBT sex, and the event in Humboldt crossed the line. And the line-crossing doesn’t seem to be limited to the Humboldt event. Back in April, at an event in Des Moines called “The Governor’s Conference on LGBTQ Youth”–also sponsored by Iowa Safe Schools–students were similarly shocked to find that an event billed as “anti-bullying” turned out to be LGBT promotion:
What one student thought was going to be a day to support anti-bullying at the Governor’s Conference on LGBTQ Youth, turned out to be much more graphic.
A metro high school student who attended the conference says she was overwhelmed by a sexually explicit question and answer forum at one of the workshops. She was so shocked that she recorded a portion of the Q&A, where someone anonymously asked if anal sex was painful.
The conference hosted by Iowa Safe Schools. Executive Director Nate Monson defends the open forum and says it’s the only chance many LGBTQ teens have to get answers.
Since when does a teen’s desire to “get answers” mean that all fellow students must hear a graphic answer, down to specifics about sexual toys and positions? When did sexual education turn into sexual proselytizing?
Iowa Safe Schools and other similar LGBT “safe schools” efforts aren’t about preventing bullying or even sexual education, but about promotion of LGBT sex. Yes, students need to learn the specifics about body parts, how they work, and how babies are made. Such education became integral, after all, to help prevent unwanted pregnancies. But unwanted pregnancy is not possible with LGBT sex. So teaching about specific LGBT sexual techniques and practices isn’t sexual education, it’s sexual promotion. And many parents are, understandably, not comfortable with the public school system being used for such promotion. Those parents who are comfortable with teaching sexual promotion–learning the means of sexual pleasure–are of course free to discuss these matters with their children.
Iowa Governor Terry Branstad (a Republican) and the Iowa legislature should immediately ban all “safe school” efforts sponsored by Iowa Safe Schools.
Category Archives: Education
Rolling Stone has confirmed for the first time in a court filing that a University of Virginia sexual assault victim advocate, who also served on an Obama administration White House task force, introduced the student who became the centerpiece of the magazine’s now-retracted story about a gang rape on campus.
The move could open the door for the magazine to try to shift blame to the university for a journalism debacle that continues to reverberate across the country.
Rolling Stone’s legal filing late last week came in response to a $7.5 million libel lawsuit filed by U.Va. Dean Nicole Eramo, who claims she was unfairly depicted as the “chief villain” in the now discredited article about a woman nicknamed “Jackie” who claimed she was gang-raped at a fraternity. Police who investigated the claim said they found no evidence of such an attack.
The Department of the Interior’s computer systems played a major role in the breach of systems belonging to the Office of Personnel Management, and DOI officials were called before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Wednesday to answer questions about the over 3,000 vulnerabilities in agency systems discovered in a penetration test run by Interior’s Inspector General office. But there was one unexpected revelation during the hearing: a key Interior technology official who had access to sensitive systems for over five years had lied about his education, submitting falsified college transcripts produced by an online service.
The official, Faisal Ahmed, was assistant director of the Interior’s Office of Law Enforcement and Security from 2007 to 2013, heading its Technology division. He claimed to have a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, and a master’s degree in technology management from the University of Central Florida—but he never attended either of those schools. He resigned from his position at Interior when the fraudulent claim was exposed by a representative of the University of Central Florida’s alumni association, who discovered he had never attended the school after Ahmed accepted and then suddenly deleted a connection with her on LinkedIn.
Faisal did not leave government service, however—he took another government job at the Census Bureau, and is apparently still there, according to a report by the National Journal. While his name had been redacted from the official report, Rep. Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming mentioned him by name multiple times during the committee hearing.
“I’m a little concerned…no, well, I’m more than a little concerned that he had access to law enforcement sensitive materials and other secure information,” Lummis said, “and that he had falsified his background, and that now it appears that he is working for another federal agency, the U.S. Census Bureau.”
Educational credential fraud has been an issue in the past in the federal government, though previous investigations have largely focused on government employees using government money to obtain unsubstantiated degrees from “diploma mills.” Faisal, ironically, received federal funds to obtain further education through the Harvard Senior Executive Fellows Program in 2011 despite having no previous formal education. The current tuition for that program is $21,200.
Atlanta radio show “The Bert Show” had a guest on this week who has managed to incite the rage of just about every millennial in the state of Georgia (and beyond, the show is syndicated in 11 states).
The woman, a 22-year-old college junior named Kim, who did not give her last name on air and was allowed to use a voice disguiser to even further shield her identity, came to the three hosts with a confession: in just short three years she had managed to blow through a $90,000 college fund left to her by her grandparents. Kim has one year left of school and no way to cover her remaining $20,000 tuition balance.
The show’s hosts try to give Kim the benefit of the doubt. She’s come to them (for some untold reason — perhaps a financial aid officer would have been a wiser choice) in a time of great need and they at least want to try to help her.
But what followed has to be one of the most painful interviews that has ever been aired on national radio. Kim manages to personify just about every parent’s worst nightmare — an entitled 20-something who asks for handouts rather than face the very real financial challenges of young adulthood. You can listen to the full interview online at TheBertShow.com, but we’ve shared the highlights of Kim’s cringe-inducing description of her predicament below.
“Years ago my grandparents set up a college fund for me, which was amazing, and I haven’t been very good with my budget for school. The first payment for my senior year just arrived and I don’t have the money basically. I’ve just been avoiding it. I knew the bill was coming.”
“I used it to budget for school clothes and college break money. I probably should have not done that. I took a trip to Europe. The Europe thing I thought was part of my education and that’s how I tried to justify that.”
“Maybe [my parents] should have taught me to budget or something. They never sat me down and had a real serious talk about it.”
“[My parents] said there was nothing they could do for me. They’re not being honest with me saying they don’t have [money] because my dad has worked for like a million years and they have a retirement account.”“Then my parents suggested I go take out a loan at a credit union and I’m, like, how am I supposed to do that?”
Shocking (? — Hardly) new allegations emerged Wednesday against the University of Wisconsin-Madison professor who tweeted that Scott Walker and Adolf Hitler share “terrifying” similarities.
The University of Wisconsin Madison College Republicans put out a press release alleging that sociology Professor Sara Goldrick-Rab also tweeted at incoming freshmen who support Scott Walker, antagonizing them about the Republican governor’s budget cuts to the University of Wisconsin system.
“The College Republicans of UW-Madison call on the University of Wisconsin-Madison to address the harassment of these future Badgers on Twitter who were doing nothing but showing their excitement for attending this university,” the group’s chairman, Anthony Birch, stated on its Facebook page. “Professor Sara Goldrick-Rab: We find the way you have approached the dialogue around the intersection of politics and our university’s future disgusting and repulsive.”
Specifically, the group alleges that on June 6, “an excited recent high school graduate tweeted a picture of himself and his friends making the Wisconsin ‘W’ with their hands.”
“Professor Goldrick-Rab proceeded to cross all boundaries of professionalism and respect by seeking these recent graduates out on Twitter and proceeding to harass them with articles intended to lobby and persuade them not to attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison because ‘we don’t want students 2 waste their $’ and ‘I thought you want a degree of value,’” the release states.
“She proceeded to inform them that ‘if this thing goes through, we are all leaving, no joke,’ regarding the recent Republican budget and its changes to the University of Wisconsin system.”
Two-thirds of subsidized financial aid swallowed up by tuition increases, Federal Reserve Bank study finds
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York is joining the chorus of mostly education policy experts on the right: The massive expansion of financial aid is helping colleges far more than students.
Its new report on “credit supply and the rise in college tuition” explores the “pass-through effect” of federal student aid programs on tuition, finding the “most pronounced” effects are happening at “expensive, private institutions that are somewhat, but not among the most, selective,” according to a staff summary.
In layman’s terms, the report finds that for every dollar of subsidized federal loans, colleges on average are jacking up “sticker-price tuition” 65 cents. It’s slightly lower for Pell grants, for which colleges are raising tuition by 55 cents for each dollar of aid, and unsubsidized loans, with a 30-cent increase for every federal dollar.
The New York Fed’s findings back up earlier research by George Washington University and Harvard economists and University of Oregon economists, which all set to test the “Bennett Hypothesis.” As the New York Fed explains:
Even the more muted tuition and student aid trends in the 1980s, prompted the then-Secretary of Education William Bennett (1987) to argue that “[…] increases in financial aid in recent years have enabled colleges and universities blithely to raise their tuitions, confident that Federal loan subsidies would help cushion the increase,” a statement that came to be known as the “Bennett Hypothesis.”
The Competitive Enterprise Institute’s Hans Bader cites a bevy of other research in support of this connection between financial-aid expansion and tuition increases.
Earlier this month, LifeNews.com reported on a high school in Seattle, Washington that is now implanting intrauterine devices (IUD), as well as other forms of birth control and doing so without parental knowledge or permission.
The IUD is known as a long acting reversible contraception, and may even act as an abortifacient. So, a young teen in Seattle can’t get a coke at her high school, but she can have a device implanted into her uterus, which can unknowingly kill her unborn child immediately after conception. Or, if she uses another method, she can increase her chances of health risks for herself, especially if using a new method.
The high school, Chief Sealth International, a public school, began offering the devices in 2010, made possible by a Medicaid program known as Take Charge and a non-profit, Neighborcare. Students can receive the device or other method free of cost and without their parent’s insurance. And while it’s lauded that the contraception is confidential, how can it be beneficial for a parent-child relationship when the parents don’t even know the devices or medication their daughter is using?
As it turns out, Chief Sealth isn’t the only school in Seattle doing this. As CNS News reports, more schools are fitting young girls — as young as 6th grade — with the devices and doing so without their parents knowing.
Middle and high school students can’t get a Coca-Cola or a candy bar at 13 Seattle public schools, but they can get a taxpayer-funded intrauterine device (IUD) implanted without their parents’ consent.
I loved reading the If You Give a Mouse a Cookie books to my daughter.
The somewhat Aesopian theme is that if you give the mouse what it wants – a cookie – it will just want more: a glass of milk, a straw, etc.
The story came to mind last week, a week that began with many vowing to inter the Confederate flag and that ended with the Supreme Court mandating that there is a constitutional right to same-sex marriage. As far as culture-war victories go, the flag news was big, but the marriage ruling was tantamount to VE Day.
It might be too much to think that progressive activists and intellectuals would demobilize after such a “Mission Accomplished” moment. But a reasonable person might expect social-justice warriors to at least take the weekend off to celebrate.
But no. Even when the cookie is this big, the mice want something more. The call went out that there were new citadels to conquer. Within hours of the decision, Politico ran a call to arms titled “It’s Time to Legalize Polygamy: Why Group Marriage Is the Next Horizon of Social Liberalism.” On Sunday, Time magazine had Mark Oppenheimer’s “Now’s the Time to End Tax Exemptions for Religious Institutions.”
I very much doubt we’ll get a constitutional right for teams of people to get “married,” but I have every confidence the drumbeat will grow louder. Social justice – forever ill-defined so as to maximize the power of its champions – has become not just an industry but also a permanent psychological orientation among journalists, lawyers, educators, and other members of the new class of eternal reformers.
By no means are social-justice warriors always wrong. But they are untrustworthy, because they aren’t driven by a philosophy so much as an insatiable appetite that cannot take yes for an answer. No cookie will ever satisfy them. Our politics will only get uglier, as those who resist this agenda realize that compromise is just another word for appeasement.
Tempers flared among parents at the final Fairfax County School Board meeting for the school year, when 10-to-2 vote decided last Thursday 7th through 10th grade students that the sex education curriculum would include lessons pertaining to gender identity and transgender issues.
The school board vote happened one day before the Supreme Court voted 5-4 to legalize same-sex marriage across the country.
Those protesting the curriculum changes wore red t-shirts and bright stickers with the phrase, “Respect parents’ rights” while others supporting the board wore stickers that said, “Teach the facts.”
Changes to the Family Life Education curriculum spanned across each grade level, but the move of the more sensitive material from one section of the curriculum to another has opponents more than upset, despite the board’s insistence that students can opt out of such classes, if their parents choose to do so.
Fairfax County School Board member Elizabeth Schultz, one of the two dissenting votes on the curriculum change vote, told The Daily Caller that the curriculum committee, which is not a committee of the school board, spent a year going through particular sections of the family life education curriculum and recommended to the board to move parts of the family life curriculum, which included gender identity and transgender issues, over to the health curriculum.
“Once you move something out of family life, the family life education curriculum delivery method and into a health curriculum, by default, a parent no longer has the right to opt out,” Schultz said. ”And so there were huge sections, not just of the more controversial topics but even basic things about family units and emotions and social development they suggested to move to the health curriculum.”
Students who don’t want to be known by their legal name on campus – because they are transgender, a victim of sexual abuse or just want to sound more American – can now play coy at Ohio University.
The Post reports that the new policy is the result of an effort started nearly three years ago by the Student Senate’s LGBT commissioners, who “worked closely” with officials “on the technicalities of the policy”:
The preferred name and pronoun policy, which was approved June 4, will allow all OU students to state their preferred names and select their preferred pronouns in their Student Portal, said Delfin Bautista, director of the LGBT Center. This name and pronoun will then show up on professors’ class rosters, advising lists and anywhere a student ID card is swiped. …
“Hopefully, what this will create is there may be faculty who may never know the legal name of a student,” Bautista said. “They may have Rachel in class, and Rachel has always been Rachel, but they may never know that Rachel’s legal name is Richard.”
Thus, students no longer need to worry about their legal names unintentionally “outing” them because their legal name does not match their identity.
The school wants to play down the LGBT roots of the change, which are evident in the “pronoun” component: The Post says “the policy can benefit international students who choose to go by an American version of their name,” and Bautista also says it will benefit students whose parents divorced.
The new policy won’t apply to diplomas, however, so “Rachel” will forever be known in school files as “Richard.”
I weep for the future of education.