Okay, so I didn't know what The Laramie Project was or that a film was made about it in 2002. It first caught my attention when I heard that the gay lobby was trying to push its agenda into our public schools.
I moved to Iowa a couple years ago. I had no idea how persistent the gay lobby is in trying to influence our youth. My first sampling was a mailing from the "GLBT Youth in Iowa Schools Task Force" (GBLT: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender).
The first couple of pages would lead you to believe that all they are interested in are special laws to protect gay students from bullying. But read a little further and you find statements like: "issues pertaining to sexual orientation can be infused in the curriculum," and "each school district should provide, for students who are struggling with sexual or gender orientation, appropriate social work services and programs."
These topics should begin "as early as kindergarten" they wrote. They included a reading list of books praising homosexuality with the advice that thirteen year olds should have homosexual "kissing parties and obsessive crushes" and the like. (Yes, I sent a letter to the superintendent of schools. He said children are taught to respect one another and that bullying would not be tolerated no matter what the cause was.)
It wasn't good enough for the gay lobby apparently. Six months later, radio ads appeared that featured gay teens talking about how special laws are necessary to protect them from violence at school. Who is paying for all this I wondered?
So what is The Laramie Project? It's a play based on the tragic story of Matthew Shepard, a 21-year-old gay University of Wyoming student who was kidnapped, severely beaten, and left to die when he was tied to a fence on the outskirts of Laramie, Wyoming, in 1998. The Des Moines register pointed out that "that despite national controversy about profanity and violent content in 'The Laramie Project', last year it debuted on the list of top 10 plays performed in American high schools, right behind another play that contains violence: 'The Diary of Anne Frank'."
Even though parents have protested, the play will be held in November at Valley High School in West Des Moines. School authorities' response to parental concerns includes toning down the profanity but not much more. What do they say about the play? "It is edgy, but it is for a mature audience," said Phyllis Staplin, Director of Curriculum. "This is providing a teaching opportunity for diversity and acceptance."
So here we go again. More tolerance, acceptance, and diversity - the holy writ of modern, post-Christian America. If Ms. Staplin is so keen on teaching her students "diversity and acceptance", then how about a play about the life and beliefs of Columbine student Cassie Bernall who was shot for saying she believed in God? Her murderers weren't particularly tolerant either.
The truth is that The Laramie Project is not really about diversity and acceptance. It's about normalizing the homosexual lifestyle. The more kids hear about homosexuality (as if they aren't sexualized enough these days), the more normal it seems. The gay lobby knows this. That's why there is such a relentess public relations push for gay rights in all areas of public life.
Ms. Staplin argues normalization is a good thing. Well, if tolerance is the goal, why choose a topic so politically charged? Why not use an American classic like "To Kill a Mockingbird?" But tolerance and acceptance are two different things, a point that escapes Ms. Staplin as she promotes the homosexual lifestyle to a "mature audience" as she calls her class of fourteen to eighteen year olds.
Let's keep the lifestyle morality lessons out of government schools.
Amber Wojcik is a stay-at-home mom and wife of an Orthodox Christian priest.