Saturday, April 26, 2008

Promoting Day of Silence at school for gays only serves to increase tensions


The Republic has an article today praising the "Day of Silence" that gay students and their supporters participated in this week, where they refused to say anything all day long during class. This type of activity shouldn't be encouraged. Children attend school to learn, not to engage in social protest. Condoning this type of behavior sends a message to children that they can do whatever they want at school as long as it's in further of their political agenda.

Most importantly, it is a bad idea because it pits gay students against those students who may not agree with them. Somewhere around 85% of the population identifies itself as Christian, and the Christian religion teaches that homosexuality is a sin. The "Day of Silence" tells Christians that their religious beliefs are wrong. And it forces gay students and their sympathizers to make themselves known. That's a lot of pressure to put on a teenager. Gay organizations should not put kids in this position of deciding whether to participate or not. Too many gay teenagers end up committing suicide - why make them come out in front of their peers where they will be subject to more criticism?

I wonder what the fallout was like, and how many gay students and Christians had bad experiences because of participating in the event. Unfortunately, the Republic is so biased they won't report on the negative events that occurred because of it. The article was titled, "Day of Silence Peaceful at Desert Ridge High." If this was true, how much did they have to silence (the irony is deafening) and try to embarrass students who disagreed? This kind of social experiment has no place in the classroom. Students should be left alone when it comes to their religious and political beliefs, and not taught to force them on others. What about the feelings of the students who disagreed - they should not be ostracized, as this event tried to do.

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