June 24th 2006

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Articles from this issue:

CANBERRA OBSERVED: Can Beazley win on workplace relations?

EDITORIAL: The future of nuclear energy in Australia

THE ECONOMY: Debt crisis may force 'severe correction'

INDUSTRY POLICY: Develop ethanol to cut the foreign debt

SCHOOLS: Victorian Education Department promotes gay agenda

NATIONAL AFFAIRS: Snowy Hydro: the unresolved issues

WESTERN AUSTRALIA: Disgraced ex-premier Brian Burke resurfaces

STRAWS IN THE WIND: Beazley's nine lives / Over-selling Bill / Dodging the issues

OBITUARY: Vale Bob Browning (1932-2006)

FOREIGN AFFAIRS: Death squad allegations against East Timor PM Mari Alkatiri

THE RULE OF LAW: What is wrong with a charter of rights?

THE COLD WAR: Inquiry needed into Soviet subversion

Prof. Walter Starck 'a winner' (letter)

Bid to scuttle pregnancy support services (letter)

No mention of Pauline Hanson or One Nation (letter)

BOOKS: FALLING BLOSSOM: A British officer's enduring love for a Japanese woman

Books promotion page

Victorian Education Department promotes gay agenda

by Bill Muehlenberg

News Weekly, June 24, 2006
Bill Muehlenberg reports on the latest triumph of political correctness in Victorian schools.

It had to come to this eventually. Yes, mothers and fathers are now taboo. At least, calling someone your mum or dad is verboten. Nix. Not allowed. Out of bounds.

Schools are being urged by a taxpayer-funded booklet never to allow children to be so insensitive and bigoted again: they are not to call their parents mum or dad. "Parent", yes, or "guardian" - but not those intolerant and prejudiced terms, "mummy" and "daddy". You see, we don't want to offend any homosexuals or lesbians out there. That would be terrible, wouldn't it?

Lesbian activist Vicki Harding has written a book for teachers entitled, Learn To Include. This teachers' manual also urges schools to put up posters of homosexuals and lesbians, and also not to use gender-specific toys. Children as young as five are also urged to act out homosexual scenarios.

The teachers' manual is meant for students from Prep to Level 3, and is already in use in dozens of Victorian schools. But not content to stop there, Victoria's Department of Education and Training has invited Ms Harding to promote the manual to principals and teachers. She will address a taxpayer-funded conference in Melbourne in July.

Let's get real about diversity

The aim of all this, we are toldd, is to get children to respect diversity. Oh, thanks. Now I get it. Yes, we certainly want little Johnny and little Sarah to know all about the real world out there, and to learn that everyone must be accepted for who they are, no questions asked.

So that means we should also bring in drug addicts to our schools, and let them share their stories with the littlies. Surely, they too are representative of the real world. Certainly, there must be some toddlers out there with a heroin-addicted mum or a pot-head pop. We must teach all the students that these parents exist, and they must be treated with the utmost respect.

The diverse world in which we live also includes criminals locked up in prison. Maybe we should bring in a few prisoners, and let them tell the little three-year-olds that we need to respect the diversity that is in their world as well. Who knows? The little kiddies may one day find themselves in prison, so what a wonderful experience to get them ready for the real world, and to teach them the very valuable lesson of embracing diversity in its fullest.

Of course, many of the toddlers in our schools have parents who smoke as well. We certainly do not want them to feel left out. We really do want to be tolerant and inclusive. Maybe we can invite the big tobacco companies in, and let them teach the kids the meaning of respect for those who choose the nicotine lifestyle.

Yes, it all does make very good sense. It is indeed a very diverse and multifaceted world out there. We dare not keep our little tykes in the dark about all sorts of lifestyle choices. So bring on the arsonists, racists, polluters and sexists. After all, they really do help to make our world so wonderfully diverse. We dare not be exclusive of anyone or any lifestyle.

Of course, the above passage is meant to highlight the fact that some ideas are just plain stupid and deserve to be treated as such. Obviously, all people deserve respect, but that does not mean that any and every alternative lifestyle must be crammed down the throats of toddlers. While people can and do choose their lifestyles, these lifestyles should not be force-fed upon our hapless children.

Media complicity

This incredible story first broke in the Sunday Herald Sun (June 4) and the next day Channel 7's Today Tonight also ran the story. The short segment on Channel 7 was introduced by Naomi Robson as possibly another example of PC going overboard. But the actual story itself was much less critical. Indeed, Vicki Harding seemed to get at least four chances to speak, while a conservative talking head (myself) was given just two.

Strange, but when I was introduced, I was called "deeply religious" and part of the Australian Family Association. They got it wrong on the latter, as I twice told them I was secretary of the Family Council of Victoria. And why the religious bit? What was the need for that? I do not recall Ms Harding being introduced with the words, "a deeply irreligious" person.

So it seems that Seven was intent on making me look like the bad guy, and wanted to pin me down with some religious tag, even though I said nothing religious throughout the interview, and was speaking on behalf of the FCV. But if you can be pegged as religious, that means your views can simply be discounted. You are just some religious nut.

But if that is the case, then so too are the vast majority of Australians - just another example of the secular media doing a hatchet job on religion.

The story was less than balanced in other ways. Parents at a Melbourne primary school were also interviewed, and asked their opinion on the ban proposal. In the story it was said that the parents were divided on the issue. Thus one parent was shown to be in favour of the ban, along with one parent opposed to it.

Yet, when the reporter spoke to me (having just come from the school), she told me that the majority of parents were clearly against the idea. Amazing what a little bit of television editing can do to change a story.

All you need to know about
the wider impact of transgenderism on society.
TRANSGENDER: one shade of grey, 353pp, $39.99

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