This really makes me mad.
This is a corporate blog, but from time to time I feel it necessary to interject a bit of personal opinion – especially when it comes to an issue or an event like this, one that we are all very passionate about here.
Let’s first look at the facts:
In Kentucky’s House Education Committee (state legislature), a bill died Tuesday that some lawmakers felt would extend special protections to gay students, while simultaneously infringing the religious rights of Christian students.
The bill mentioned abuse that is motivated “by a student’s actual or perceived race; color; religion; national origin; ancestry or ethnicity; sexual orientation; physical, mental, emotional, or learning disability; gender; gender identity and expression; or other distinguishing personal characteristic.”
Rep. Ben Waide, R-Madisonville, said he feared that any statute that did not protect a Christian student’s First Amendment rights to disagree with a gay student about whether homosexuality is acceptable could subject the Christian student to punishment for harassment.
Waide said the issue was about equal protection, but that “you can’t achieve equality by making some persons more equal than others.”
Really? Then why do we give tax breaks to the super rich? Why do we give subsidies to farms? Why is there affirmative action? I could literally go on and on, but this is not about making them “more equal” than others; it is about closing a loophole that would allow one group of kids the right to legally torment and harass another group of students, based on religious principles.
Never mind the fact that tormenting and harassing others is just plain ethically wrong, never mind the fact that doing harm to others is against the Christian religion’s basic, core moral principle (kindness to others), but wouldn’t allowing this to happen make the bully’s rights far greater than the victim’s, and thus throw the equality balance way off?
Waide said he feared that any statute that did not protect a Christian student’s First Amendment rights to disagree with a gay student about whether homosexuality is acceptable could subject the Christian student to punishment for harassment.
[Supporters say] Marzian’s bill would not do that.
I assure you, the bullies are not merely just “disagreeing” – this is malicious bullying and harassment we are talking about – not a debate in class.
I am all for religious freedom. It is what our country was founded on. It is essential for our country (actually, our world) to survive. But when your religious views impact my right to a peaceful life of prosperity without harassment, I have a problem.
Making this about religious freedom is wrong. This is about the basic right to not be harassed – and the problem of bullying among our youth. Something needs to be done. It needs to be stopped. Closing a loophole like this gives victims more of a leg to stand on when trying to stop the bullying.
In terms of parenting: no parent should allow their child to torment, harass, make fun of or humiliate another person (young or old) for any reason. Period. It’s okay to disagree, but it’s not okay to bully.
Know if your child is bullying others. Monitor Internet activity.
March 13, 2012
Bullying Bill Rejected Over ‘Special Rights’ For Gays
Ky. Lawmakers Kill Bill In Committee
WLWT, NBC 5
FRANKFORT, Ky. — A bill to protect students from bullying by their classmates died Tuesday in the House Education Committee because some lawmakers worried it would give “special rights” to gay students.
The proposal by Rep. Mary Lou Marzian, a Louisville Democrat, failed to get the 15 votes it needed. The party-line vote was 13 in favor, 10 against and three abstentions. Read more ›