Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Christian School Denies Entry to Child of Same-Sex Couple

A Christian school in San Diego is not allowing a 5-year-old girl to attend kindergarten because she has two moms.

Via MSN:
"When asked by the news team if it was discrimination to stop the child from attending because of her mothers, a woman who described herself as the school's director, said, 'The Bible says homosexuality is a sin. We don't condone any sinful lifestyles.' 
KGTV got a copy of the school's parent and student handbook which was revised over the summer. Under the school's statement of nondiscrimination, the handbook declared the school's right to "refuse admission of an applicant or to discontinue enrollment of a student." 
'This includes, but is not necessarily limited to, living in, condoning or supporting sexual immorality; practicing homosexual lifestyle or alternative gender identity; promoting such practices; or otherwise having the inability to support the moral principles of the school,' the handbook continued, according to the news station."
I have two items of note here.

One, I highlight how the conservative National Review frames the situation only because it's indicative of a mindset held by many anti-LGBTs. There, David French asks, in a piece entitled, "Lesbian Parents Try to Force a Christian School to Educate Their Child":
"Here’s a question for the secular left — when religious liberty collides with the desires of LGBT citizens, is there any case where religious freedom should prevail? How about when a lesbian couple tries to force a private Christian school to educate their child?" (emphasis added)
Ah, note the use of the phrase "desires of LGBT citizens," a word that, oh, maybe suggests that a lesbian couples' simple, decent wish for their daughter to attend school is in some way related to sex.

But, more pertinently, notice how French centers the beliefs (and prejudices) of adults in this scenario when, in fact, it is the child who is actually most profoundly impacted by the discrimination. How different does it sound when we ask:
Here's a question for all - when religious "freedom to discriminate" collides with the rights of children to attend school, when should religious freedom to discriminate prevail?
This case isn't one of Christians v. LGBTs, or even the Christian right v. the secular left.  It's one of Christian anti-LGBTs v. children who happen to have same-sex parents. That is, grown-ass adults punishing a child because they disagree with the "lifestyle" of her parents.

Two, notice the moral code in the handbook which specifically calls out homosexuality.  Yet, does the school also prohibit children of divorced, adulterous, or single parents from attending the school?

Of course not. Nor should it.

But that's how it so often is with the Christian bigot crowd, isn't it?

In the debates about marriage, many opponents of allowing same-sex couples to marry held that marriage was about "procreation," yet they had no issue with allowing infertile heterosexuals to marry. It's LGBTs and same-sex couples who these sorts of folks so often single out for their special brand of entitled, discriminatory treatment that they rarely reserve for other groups.

Bigot Kim Davis doesn't deny marriage licenses to people on their third, fourth marriage. No, her hill to die on is same-sex marriage. For special lucky reasons, I guess.

Even as these folks wail that it's LGBT people who constantly seek "special rights," these are the folks who seek both the special right to discriminate against LGBT people without consequence and to in no way face public shaming (or being called a bigot) for doing so.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Serena Williams and the "Smile" Command

I first saw this via Sociological Images:
"Serena Williams, the winner of 21 Grand Slam titles and arguably the greatest living female athlete, was understandably exhausted after defeating her sister and best friend Venus Williams in the U.S. Open earlier this week. So she wasn’t having it when, during a post-match press conference on Tuesday, a reporter had the gall to ask why she wasn’t smiling. 
Williams looked down and gave an exasperated sigh before shelling out the best response an athlete has given in an interview since football player Marshawn Lynch’s “I’m just here so I won’t get fined” trademark phrase. 
"It’s 11:30. To be perfectly honest with you, I don’t want to be here. I just want to be in bed right now and I have to wake up early to practice and I don’t want to answer any of these questions. And you keep asking me the same questions. It’s not really … you’re not making it super enjoyable.""
Ha. Awesome.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Stonewall Movie and the Gay White Male Hero

Via Richard Lawson, in Vanity Fair:
"Stonewall is ultimately yet another cartoonish fantasy about white saviors and square-jawed heroes; it should be called Independence Gay
Maybe it’s asking too much to get a smart, accurate Stonewall movie. After all, a heck of a lot of straight history has been schmaltzified by Hollywood, neatly edited and tidied up, so why shouldn’t gay history get the same shitty treatment? But that this film was directed by a gay man, written by a gay man, with an obvious intent to educate, uplift, and inspire, in this particular political climate, and is still so maddeningly, stultifyingly bungled serves only to show us how ridiculous the concept of a monolithic “gay community” really is. Stonewall at least does that bit of good: it illustrates how systems of privilege and prejudice within a minority can be just as pervasive and ugly as anything imposed from the outside. And that’s an outrage. So how long until someone throws a brick through the screen?"
Isn't this movie, though, a mainstream narrative of the "LGBT community"?

Gay white men disproportionately put themselves in the highest-level, highest-paid positions in LGBT nonprofits, creating White Men's Clubs that alienate those who don't share their privileged identities.

To hear some of them talk, Andrew Sullivan practically invented same-sex marriage.

As I have written before, the most prominent national conversations about same-sex marriage have been, with the exception of Maggie Gallagher, largely also same-sex conversations among (white) men often talking to other (white) men, but sometimes also to the American public, about the topic. Jonathan Rauch. David Blankenhorn. Brian Brown. Evan Wolfson. Dale Carpenter. John Corvino. Robert George. Andrew Sullivan. Dan Savage. Peter LaBarbera.

All of this is true even though other people have also been doing important advocacy and writing work in less prominent ways that don't get them the same level of attention, recognition, and credit.

With the gay white male focus on "we're just like you" assimilation while presuming that they - and they alone - are the key protagonists in the LGBT struggle, I continue to suspect that the real goal for many is not a revolution, but merely "a change in management."