"Updated" bill filed for homosexual lobby to push their goals.On October 25 the homosexual and transgender lobby came in full force to the State House to push a bill to amend last year's anti-bullying law, to make homosexuality and "gender identity or expression" (i.e., boys wearing dresses, etc.) as protected classes in schools. Among other things, it would require special anti-bullying diversity training and the banning of any criticism of those behaviors by students or staff. It would affect virtually all public and private schools in Massachusetts.
Luckily for parents, MassResistance was also there to fight that bill, to tell the truth to politicians, and to support our own bill to repeal the existing anti-bullying law.
Standing room only. The hearing room was full of activists, lobbyists, and special-interest groups.
Part of national push by homosexual activistsMost people don't realize that the biggest force behind the "anti-bullying laws" across the country has been the homosexual/transgender movement. Virtually every "anti-bully" law around the country has been started and predominantly pushed by those activists, and contains much of their language. (In New Jersey, the homosexual lobby group actually wrote the entire anti-bully law.) This radical movement is cynically taking this often tragic problem and leveraging it for its own ends.
Their political goal is to use the anti-bullying bills to force the normalization of homosexual and transgender behavior in the schools. They particularly push to include language in the bills: (1) declaring homosexuality and "gender identity" as special protected classes; (2) making it a crime for any student or staff member to criticize, disparage, or question those behaviors; (3) requiring special diversity training to students and all school staff; and (4) imposing meticulous "bullying incident" reporting requirements on school staff members.
The campaign generally becomes quite aggressive, invariably (and shamelessly) repeating the emotional imagery of children committing suicide from apparent bullying incidents. That is followed by their demands that their solutions be used or else, they claim, more kids will die.
The actual scientifically-based causes of bullying and preventive measures are consistently tossed aside. Instead, we get their politically correct "solutions" which are unfortunately generally ineffective and even counter-productive.
Massachusetts anti-bully law passed last year: Not everything gays wantedLast year, as we reported, the Legislature overwhelmingly passed -- amid a media generated climate of hysteria with no substantial debate -- an onerous anti-bullying law that was cheered by homosexual activists for opening the door to more homosexual activism in schools. It was also derided as a school administrator's nightmare, slammed by civil libertarians, and criticized by behavior experts as being ineffective.
But to the disappointment and anger of the homosexual lobby, the legislators stopped short of requiring so-called "enumerated categories", which is the ultimate goal of the homosexual activists across the country. Those would require a school to "protect" special "categories" of people from bullying -- in this case homosexuals and cross-dressers, etc. -- with special programs and diversity training, and punishments for any criticism or derision of that behavior.
Special AG Commission to the rescue for the homosexual lobbyHowever, activists were able to put language into the law creating a temporary special anti-bullying commission run by pro-gay Attorney General Martha Coakley. After studying the situation further it was to report back with any suggested incremental changes on June 30, 2011.
So the homosexual lobby went to work and focused like a laser beam on this commission to push the changes they wanted. Since Coakley was already in the tank, that wasn't too difficult. They received a wide range of input from organizations. But in the end the Commission filed a bill this summer giving the homosexual lobby practically everything it wanted, but basically ignoring the real flaws in the law.
(MassResistance followed this process pretty closely. We attended the commission's two public hearings and we submitted testimony. We will have a full report on that coming up.)
AG's Commission files bill H3584 -- heard at Oct. 25 hearingThe commission consolidated its recommendations into Bill H3584 to amend the current law, and filed it in the Legislature.
Bill H3584 (see text) basically does three things:
- It writes into law the "enumerated categories" which
schools must take "specific steps" to protect. This includes "sexual
orientation" and "gender identity or expression." But to cloud their true
intent, they also included a rather absurd list of other "differentiating
characteristics": race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex,
socioeconomic status, academic status, physical appearance, and mental,
physical, developmental, or sensory disability. However, we don't recall seeing
anyone representing any of these other categories demanding they be included.
But as we've pointed out, behavioral researchers have concluded that these "enumerated categories" have almost nothing to do with stopping bullying. Bullies bully pick their victims for entirely different reasons, and it's a complex psychological issue on both ends.
- It forces all schools to meticulously collect and report
data regarding all bullying incidents throughout the year having to do
with the above categories. The homosexual lobby admitted that the purpose is to
make sure all schools are complying. Critics rightly complain that "bullying"
incidents are highly subjective and poorly defined in the law.
- It extends the AG's anti-bullying commission until June 2013, to come up with even more requirements. This gives special interests another shot at pushing their agenda into the law.
MassResistance's bill H1059 -- also heard at Oct. 25 hearingOur bill, H1059 (see text), which was filed last January, is simple: It repeals the anti-bullying law passed year. The current law is onerous and ineffective and is not even being implemented by a large number of school districts. It needs to be completely re-written. Early on the Boston Globe admitted it will fail to be effective. Even the Boston Globe liberal columnist Kevin Cullen wrote a piece slamming its ineffectiveness.
This is a battle the homosexual movement clearly doesn't want to lose. Both GLSEN and MassEquality sent out blast emails to homosexual activists across the state asking for their participation in this effort. They certainly came to the hearing with both barrels!
At hearing: Wave after wave of homosexual activist testimony.This is a major lobbying campaign with political goals rather than scientific goals.
The homosexual lobby came prepared with a flood of both "expert" and emotional testimony to push Bill 3584 through the committee. Much of it was, in our opinion, phony, contrived, and quite objectionable, though presented as if it were scholarly fact.
Interestingly, although the bill includes long list of "enumerated categories," only the homosexual/transgender category was addressed!
Here's a sample of who came to testify for Bill H3584. There's no question that this is a huge priority for the homosexual movement:
|Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley. Coakley is a passionate supporter of the homosexual movement. She gave a long diatribe about her anti-bullying commission's work and how important it was to "protect" students with these new requirements. The addition of "enumerated categories" she admitted, was from "extensive testimony" the commission heard (i.e., not scientific evaluation).|
|Massachusetts State Auditor Suzanne Bump. We all wondered: What is the state auditor doing here? She said that the auditor's job is to have "expertise in problem solving." And we need a plan to protect our schoolchildren from harmful words and actions. We need to use "best practices" -- and that means "mandating reporting requirements" which she would help audit. (By the way, she also marches in the "gay pride" parade.)|
|Former Education Committee Chairman. State Representative Martha Walz was the House Chairman of the Education Committee last year, and was the chief author of the current anti-bullying law. She said they hadn't at first included "enumerated categories" because "more data was needed." The Commission did such good work, she said, that she now believes they are a good complement to the current law.|
|Activist mother Sirdeaner Walker. She is the mother of Carl Walker-Hoover, a student who tragically committed suicide apparently after bullying incidents (though other contributing issues have surfaced in the media). She is now on the Board of Directors of the national homosexual group GLSEN and has shamelessly been touring the country with a well-scripted emotional speech pushing GLSEN's solutions for anti-bullying legislation. Her basic message today: If you don't pass this you are helping kids kill themselves. They brought in TV cameras for her testimony and the committee was suitably deferential.|
|Anti-Defamation League (ADL) -- Chairman of the New England Region. He particularly offensive in the way he portrayed people with religious objections to homosexuality. He told the committee the ADL wanted enumerated categories in the beginning, because "Hatred based on bigotry and stereotypes affects communities in a unique way." He brought a "national survey" by GLSEN that concluded that without these categories things get worse, and claiming that 65% of teens were "verbally or physically assaulted during the past year."|
|Gay Bullying Expert - Boston College Assistant Professor told the committee that he specializes in "homophobic bullying" and described various "research" that he says fully supports enumeration categories. He said that 40% of kids bullied reported that they were bullied because of their "category." (Thus, 60% weren't.) He is on Board of Directors of GLSEN/Mass., and has conducted forums for the Commission on GLBT Youth.|
|Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD). The Senior Staff Atty said that kids are targeted because of these innate characteristics because of bias. Schools thus must "dig deeper" and work harder to prevent that. In particular, she wants to ban homophobic remarks such as "That's so gay" because it "creates a hostile climate" and it thus constitutes anti-LGBT harassment and bullying. Interesting - a "civil rights" lawyer who wants to ban the First Amendment.|
|Mass. Commission on GLBT Youth. Members "Grace" Sterling Stowell and Arthur Lipkin are two men -- one wearing a dress. They said that enumerated categories "will reduce biased-based bullying" particularly for gender non-conforming and sexual minority youth, and brought up phony "Youth Risk Behavior Survey" as evidence.|
|Homosexual public school teacher. A homosexual public school teacher "married" to another man described himself as a "teacher, father, and advocate." He said that enumerated categories will make kids feel "personally included" and will be a critical tool for teachers and administrators. He said his daughter feels safe having two dads and he wants others to, also.|
|Homosexual organization PFLAG student representative. A college student in social work and an "intern" with PFLAG said he welcomed the conclusions of the commission. School climate is important, he added. He insisted that mandated reporting is necessary and that fears of under reporting are unfounded.|
|Executive Director of MassEquality. She said it's important to include sexual orientation and gender identity or expression in legislation. She told the committee, "I was bullied. I was called a tomboy to my face. And I was called other things behind my back."|
|Arline Isaacson, lobbyist for the Mass Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus (and also affiliated with the Massachusetts Teachers Union). She thanked the politicians for all the access she had to them in crafting the original bill, and acknowledged the work the media did to help get it passed. She said she had tried to get enumerated categories into the bill, but that just didn't make it. So now is the time.|
Also at hearing: MassResistance fights back -- contradicts the lies and tells the truth!As usual, the MassResistance pro-family contingent had to wait until near the end of the public hearing to testify. And we were the only pro-family group willing to take on the homosexual/transgender lobby so directly.
But it was worth it. We not only told the committee the truth, as opposed to the lies and misrepresentations they'd been hearing. But we also brought up a lot of things they hadn't ever heard before about this bill (and their reaction showed that). Most of them seemed to be listening carefully. Several of the committee members actually thanked us for our testimony, and asked us questions to elaborate on what we had said. It was definitely one of the better public hearings
|Bruce Caley, father. He said he was bullied terribly in school. But this represents a big free speech problem. If a student didn't believe in homosexuality or transgenderism, how can they speak out about it without being a bully? It would suppress even loving free speech against it. We really need to be careful. Can we disagree and still be friends?|
|Sally Naumann, mother. Said that many studies show MORE bullying after intervention than before, especially if there's no evidence that it's helpful. GLBT is NOT something you're born with. It is a behavior which is destructive and which children should not be encouraged to get into.|
|Brian Camenker, father, and director of MassResistance. He started by pointing out the obvious: that the anti-bullying bill process has been hijacked by the special interest groups, in particular the homosexual movement. Furthermore, the committee needs to realize this is part of a national lobbying effort by homosexual lobby. The commission's work was very disappointing because it was biased toward the homosexual lobby's preferred conclusions.|
- The commission ignored lots of testimony from civil
liberties groups, that this bill will be struck down when challenged because of
so many legal holes in it. It's a bad bill that attempts to punish thoughts.
- Data collection on bullying is extremely subjective and
will always be a problem. To mandate it will only serve to gather bad,
- Most schools are not complying with the current law -- as
media reports point out -- because the current law is so difficult and
- All legitimate behavioral studies show that bullying has virtually
nothing to do with what "group" you're in. It's a psychological
relationship between the perpetrator and the victim. Attempting to fix things by
enumerating these categories will likely even make things worse.
- Moreover, emphasizing differences rather than similarities
is asking for trouble when dealing with kids. Political correctness needs to be
- The anti-family attitude by the ADL and others special interest groups that criticism of homosexuality and cross-dressing, etc., constitutes "hatred and bigotry" is extremely offensive and must not be tolerated.