Are Our Children Doomed?? Let's Start Our Own Country!
i just read this online.. a GP teacher was apparently told to take down her note from Facebook, after an anonymous person presenting him/herself as "a concerned parent" put pressure on MOE to do so... this note reads as follows:
I Teach General Paper, not Homosexuality
With all due respect to the well-meaning “concerned parents” out there, this is starting to sound like a dodgy GP essay to me.
Apparently, because my students and I “discuss topics such as the legalisation of gay marriage and parents of the same sex forming families through adoption” in class, I am guilty of promoting homosexuality.*
But never mind. MOE has already come to the rescue with their statement that “GP lessons are meant to promote critical thinking” and GP teachers “should also adhere to social norms and values of our mainstream society”.*
Oh yes, apparently one can facilitate critical thinking, that is, the reasoned questioning of assumptions, norms and values AND fully reinforce and adhere to social norms at the same time.
And wait, I see this again, in the debate on sexuality education and just what should be said about homosexuality:
1. Homosexuality is against the social norms and values of mainstream society.
2. Homosexuality is illegal and considered unnatural under Singapore law.
The first thing any student of GP (or indeed, any human being who knows anything about world history) will realise, is that social norms change.
Secondly, if you insist on going by “mainstream” values and beliefs, you may like to follow 43% of Singaporeans and look to Buddhism, which views homosexuality on neutral grounds, as opposed to Christianity (15%) and Islam (15%).
In any case, the legal argument will only hold as long as homosexual acts are considered illegal in Singapore.... and judging from the force of change in the world, frankly my dear, you can't hold the dam for much longer.
Singapore's law criminalising homosexual acts is based on British law – which decriminalised this in 1967.
Other countries which have decriminalised homosexuality include France (1791), The Netherlands (1811), Brazil (1830), Ottoman Empire (1858), Germany (1871), Japan (1880), Italy (1889), USSR (1922), Denmark (1930), Iceland (1940), Switzerland (1942), Sweden (1944), Greece (1951), Thailand (1956), Israel (1963), Chad (1967), Canada (1969), Kosovo (1970), Australia (1981), South Africa (1994), China (1997) etc.
This shows an increasing acceptance that personal preferences that do not harm anyone else should not be governed (in this case, criminalised) by the state. As with the wearing away of all other forms of inequality, I believe this discrimination of homosexuals cannot last.
So what are we left with?
Are we justifying a brand of education with reasons that won't hold weight for much longer?
You may argue that making something legal doesn't make it right, and you have a point.
But then that would depend on what you consider “right”, which really is a moral issue and one that concerns personal belief.
So I have two points for you:
1. Personal beliefs – religious or otherwise – should not influence the laws of a secular society. The onus is on parents and preachers to educate their children in these beliefs. Say what you want at the pulpit, not in Parliament, and certainly, do not foist this responsibility onto your child's teachers in secular schools.
2. It is unfair, impractical and dangerous to insist that youths be given only the old rules when they live in a completely different world. Parents, if you insist on a black-and-white moral education for your children, you only drive them into secrecy when they need you most. If teachers cannot teach openly and factually, rest assured that the internet will.
As an educator and maybe future parent, I admit I am less concerned about whether my children are homosexual/transsexual/(fill in the blank) or not, and more concerned that they should always respect others and themselves, never discriminate, always critically examine issues, always feel free to share their thoughts with me without fear of condemnation, always love and always be loved no matter what.
This is my hope.
11 May 2009
PS. If you think your children will rush to become homosexual/transsexual/(fill in the blank) because of my words, I THANK YOU for crediting me with such influence! By the way, your children are smarter than you think....
* Quoted from "AWARE sex guide suspended" (ST, 7 May 2009)
indeed, she puts forth several strong points to support her arguments, being a GP teacher after all.. but the thing is, is she right? or are the "concerned parents of the world" right?
surely we shouldn't be too harsh on these parents, eh? after all, they mean well, don't they? protecting their scions as a mother hen would protect her brood... nothing wrong with that, surely? after all, even the teacher agrees that they now live in a "completely different world"!
I share these concerns of the parents! I really do! I mean, with the "evil" Internet ready to corrupt their "innocent as a flower" sons and daughters at every turn, with all the negative influences their children get from their schoolmates and others they may meet around them, as well as the media having just shown that the "liberals" have won at the marathon Aware EoGM, with their "hooliganism" and "dangerous pro-gay pro-lesbian" agendas, while the now ex"new exco" is still licking its wounds from the defeat, there is now NO ONE LEFT to protect their little princes and princesses from the EVILS of the world, the corrupt, the sinful"!!! ISN'T THAT WHY PARENTS HAVE TO STEP IN TO DO THEIR PART??
SO WHAT ARE THESE POOR CONCERNED PARENTS GONNA DO???
well, here are my humble suggestions to them:
1. How about homeschooling your kids all the way to University? Keep them away from all the "evil" as long as you can! Separate them from all the negative influences from their misguided peers, or worse still, from "irresponsible" teachers like the one published above who (in the words of a concerned parent) "indoctrinise our kids with rubbish"! Who knows what they are telling our impressionable kids! What if they ALL decide to turn gays and lesbians because it is "OK TO DO SO"?? We can't let them know about these things can we??
2. Better still, how about getting together with a bunch of your like-minded "friends" and set up your own school!! you can even build a tall wall around it so your little precious ones cannot look outside and be influenced by all the 4D outlets and even the IR and other such vices that is happening around them 24/7!
3. Or even better, go buy an island in Indonesia and start a new country! One that you can protect your kids COMPLETELY from all these "sinful practices" of the world! a sweet little place that you can run in any way you want..... IMAGINE THAT! you could even make sure the island has no Internet access OR nonsense like Cable TV so that your precious little babies cannot be exposed to whatever rubbish and vice that the media is now feeding them! surely THEY deserve ALL that you can do for them?? SURELY YOU KNOW BEST??
4. Or you could build a giant glass dome (ala Simpsons the Movie) and quarantine them from the "dirt" of the modern world! In this pretty lala land, you can play wholesome pro-family movies on TV all day, teach wonderful values that they don't teach enough of in mainstream schools (WHO NEEDS CHOICE??), and best of all, PROTECT PROTECT PROTECT! let them grow up sweet and innocent and full of Goodness (with a capital 'G')!
Woohoooo!!!! Let's cover their eyes and keep them from seeing and hearing the evils of the world !! Teach them NEVER TO TOLERATE those vile and different from them!! Don't worry! Mummy and Daddy are here!! We will make sure you are safe forever!!
and to help you along in your most laudable anti-gay campaign, how about this "How To Write An Anti-Gay Tract In Fifteen Easy Steps"!