Gender Ideology’s Kindergarten Commissars
If you, being a monstrous bigot, didn’t take your small child to drag queen story hour at your public library or bookstore, don’t despair. In some places, publicly funded schools are stepping in to compensate for your neglect on exposing your kids to gender diversity. For example:
Angry parents stampeded a California charter school board meeting Monday after a teacher read her kindergarten class picture books about transgenderism to affirm a gender dysphoric classmate. During the class, parents say, the gender dysphoric boy also switched clothes to look more like a girl in a “gender reveal.”
Parents were not notified beforehand of the discussion or the classmate’s psychological condition, and learned about it when their confused kindergarteners arrived home from school that day.
“The kindergartners came home very confused, about whether or not you can pick your gender, whether or not they really were a boy or a girl,” Karen England of the Capitol Resource Institute told CBS News.
“My daughter came home crying and shaking so afraid she could turn into a boy,” a parent said at the public meeting.
This is not a one-off situation. As Joy Pullman explains, it’s part of a strategy by transgender advocates. She discusses how the litigious parents of a trans tot sued a public charter school into compliance with their desires. More:
Nova is a test case for what trans activists want to perpetuate nationwide — and not just in public schools, but also in private and home schools. An 8-year-old drag queen groomed by his parents says “If you want to be a drag queen and your parents don’t let you, you need new parents,” the underlying, totalitarian belief of the movement he represents. The easiest initial access point is private school choice programs, but activists are also targeting all private schools through accreditation bodies. The accreditation attack is currently most visible in higher education, but it’s spreading to K-12.
Yesterday I heard from a Washington, DC, reader whose children attended a public charter school, until he and his wife found out what the school was doing behind their backs. He sent me the e-mail chain between him and the school’s principal. I reproduce it here with his permission, and with the names of the people involved and the school redacted:
Raising little ones is hard these days, particularly because — even by ages five and six — kids on the playground are educating them about topics I didn’t even know much about until I was a preteen. Consequently, my wife and I began talking to the girls about sexuality in age-appropriate ways last year. It’s a sensitive area, but we wanted to go ahead and introduce our values to them early on, before a kid at school did and potentially caused confusion.
In that spirit, last weekend I decided to talk to the girls about the topic of people who identify as transgendered. Shortly after starting the conversation, however, I learned that [their teacher] had already talked to [our daughter] and her classmates about it. This involved her reading a book called “I Am Jazz” and conducting a classroom discussion on the topic.
First of all, let me say this: [my wife] and I think a lot of [the teacher]. She has been an excellent teacher and [our daughter] has seen great progress in her class. Furthermore, she has made a point to encourage us and compliment [our daughter’s] progress anytime she sees us. She’s a good and professional teacher, and I suppose that’s part of the reason we were so disappointed. We wouldn’t have expected it from her. And even though I’m sure she meant well, those good intentions don’t make [our daughter’s] experience any more appropriate, especially because I had already let the school know my wishes about any such discussion with the students.
Before enrolling the girls, I explicitly told you that if there was any reason the school felt the need to discuss topics including sexuality, marriage norms, or gender identity, I wanted to be notified so that my children could be excused, giving me the opportunity to decide when they were ready for that discussion. You assured me that the school would never even broach these subjects with the kids. Just to be on the safe side, however, at our home visits, I also explicitly told the teachers the same.
The classroom was not the place to conduct a discussion like this with first graders — the home is. [Our daughter] was confused by the discussion and book, and it required me to spend 20 minutes just to undo the odd and incorrect conclusions she drew about transgendered individuals from [the teacher’s] lesson and even the storyline of the book. That confusion could’ve been avoided by giving parents notification beforehand or not even discussing it at all with first graders.
The sad thing is that I would’ve never even known it happened if I hadn’t decided to have this conversation that, quite frankly, I thought might be a little too mature for their ages. But we can’t unspill the milk, so I am asking you to do the following to make things right: (1) notify all parents about what happened so they can have a chance to discuss this with their own children; (2) apologize to all of us for exploring this topic with our kids without seeking our permission; (3) inform all parents of any other instances in which such a discussion happened or any comments were made regarding gender identity, marriage norms, and sexuality; and (4) let us know what remedial measures the school will take to ensure this will not happen again.
Despite the excellent job you all are otherwise doing, this was a violation of every parents’ trust and rooted in the assumption that we are all in agreement with the ideology of the staff members. But more importantly and fundamentally, even if parents are in agreement with the ideology of staff members, this decision assumed that the school, rather than parents, is in the best position to decide when to approach hard topics like this with our children.
It is not my intent to discourage [the teacher] at all — again, we have otherwise been so pleased with her work with [our daughter] this year; but I just can’t overlook this breach of trust and I think other parents also have a right to know it happened so they can address it at home as necessary. Thank you for your attention to this matter.
Having not heard from the principal, the father wrote:
[Principal], [my wife] and I were hoping to hear back from you about our email to you. Maybe it would be better if we met in person. When are you available in the next two weeks?
The principal responded:
We are the height of planning for school opening. My apologies I did not respond sooner.
As a mother and school leader, I can empathize with the challenge of keeping up with what our children are exposed to and wanting to be their first teacher on so many issues.
I also think well of [the teacher]. She has shown herself to be a proficient teacher and student advocate.
I do not recall a conversation about how we would handle conversations about transgender issues, but I cannot imagine agreeing either to censure such material or inform you in advance. I am sorry if [the teacher] or I led you to believe such a request would be honored.
The book used is one that is a respected text in honoring the diversity of our children. It is a text that explains a real situation that many children face in self-acceptance, acceptance by others and being true to themselves. We feel the classroom is the appropriate place to share such messages.
We would not request that these themes require permission, or clearance with families. (Different than courses on sexual education, for which we do require permission.) Quite the contrary, families have asked that we enhance our curriculum to be more inclusive of all the different groups our children and families represent, and we feel that this book achieves this purpose.
I stand by [the teacher’s] use of the book in class, her decision to share the text, and the importance of these texts in the elementary classroom.
I am happy to meet with you to listen or answer any other questions you might have. My time is limited in this month, but I will do my best.
The father replied:
Thanks for getting back in touch with me, [principal]. I realize that you are busy, but do you mind meeting with [my wife] and me briefly before the week is over? We would like to tie up the discussion, but we think it might contribute to mutual understanding if we do it in person.
The principal replied:
I am not available until the school year begins as we are feverishly working to train teachers, prepare the building and open school.
I am copying [my assistant] who can help us set up something for the first week of school.
To which the father wrote:
We still want to get together with you, but if we aren’t able to talk before the school year begins, we would at least like to make sure we understood your email correctly.
[My wife] and I would like our children to be exempt from any classroom discussions or instruction relating to the topics of gender identity, marital norms, or sexuality. We would also like to be informed before any such discussions take place in the classroom. I would like to know if the school will honor that request.
Thanks in advance for letting us know. We know that these are sensitive topics that require great care, which is why we want to be the first ones to talk to our children about it.
The principal did not respond. Six days later, the father wrote:
[Principal], I appreciate how busy you are right now, but if you could please answer the question I emailed last week, I would appreciate it. Good luck with school prep!
The principal responded:
Thank you for understanding that this is an extremely busy time. I will not exempt any child from classroom discussions or instruction relating to the topics of gender identity, and ‘marital norms’.
As it relates to formal instruction regarding sexuality, and sexual reproduction I will ask for your permission before these concepts are introduced in 4th grade. When they are introduced, I can say they are conducted with cultural humility and inclusivity– thoughtful of all our children and all their families.
The parents removed their two children from this public charter school last week in light of the principal’s refusal to respect their wishes or even to tell them when gender identity is going to be discussed in their elementary school classes.
I asked the father if he wanted to go public with this, naming the school — in which case I would need to use their names, and call the principal and the teacher for comment. He said no, that they don’t want a public fight over this issue:
We just want to raise awareness and encourage parents to ask their children direct questions about this kind of stuff. If I hadn’t brought up this topic with my daughter, I would’ve never known what she was exposed to, nor would I have known that the school was systematically indoctrinating kids and doing so behind the backs of parents who had asked them to do otherwise.
Let this be a lesson to you, reader. Do you know what your child’s school’s policy is? Do you know what your child’s teacher thinks about introducing gender ideology to little children? You had better.
Note too, per Joy Pullman, that the campaign to institute gender ideology in elementary schools is not stopping at public schools or at public charter schools. Via the accreditation process, they’re going after private schools. Pullman writes:
The leftists harping on this topic are essentially demanding a religious litmus test — the adoption of the moral belief that every sexual practice must be affirmed — as a precondition for educating children. It is starting with public and private schools, but will eventually encompass “outliers” such as homeschoolers. None of us are safe unless we band together and stop this crazy train in its tracks.
A key problem is that Republican-led statehouses are the ones guarding school choice programs, and these same statehouses can barely muster the votes to protect children in public schools from being forced into unisex shower and sleeping quarters.
I have been told by people involved in this fight that Republican state legislators are getting hammered hard by the big business lobby, which wants to see liberalization of the schools on the SOGI (sexual orientation and gender identity) front. If these legislators do not hear from their constituents, they will rightly assume that the people they represent don’t care about the issue — and they’ll cave. If this matters to you as a parent, educate yourself — and call your state legislator. If you homeschool or have your kids in a private religious school, do not think that you are safe. (If you don’t belong to the Homeschool Legal Defense Association, join it now.)
The other side is not playing around — and it has deep pockets (e.g., The Gates Foundation). In The Benedict Option, I call on Christians to prepare themselves, their communities, and their children to hold on to the truth a world in which this moral insanity is the norm. There is no way to avoid it. I also urge them to use whatever political power we have left to fight for religious liberty, which includes the right to have control over what their children are taught in the classroom on matters as fundamental as what it means to be male and female.
Social and religious conservatives have lost many battles on this front, but they have not yet lost this one. But you had better be clear that the battle is here — and, as these parents above have learned, in some places it has been joined without parents even knowing what was happening. You cannot afford to be ignorant, nor can you afford to be indifferent. Never, ever forget that the Law Of Merited Impossibility is an infallible guide to progressivist culture war tactics: “It will never happen, and when it does, you bigots will deserve it.”
If your child’s teacher has read I Am Jazz to her, and she wants to know whatever happened to Jazz Jennings, you may want to know that Jennings spoke about this in the media earlier this summer, and has been on the I Am Jazz reality show discussing vaginas at the dinner table. This is the culture we live in now:
UPDATE: Reader Brendan:
I understand the call to arms on this, I really do, but I think that the battle on this has already been quite well and truly lost. The cultural Zeitgeist on this issue has a very “year before Obergefell” feeling to it — in other words, the battle was already over in everything but a formal and official way, and most everyone knew it. It’s the same for this issue — for all practical purposes this is over.
Are there more people squeamish about MTF transwomen in the ladies room today than there were about gay marriage in, say, 2013? Probably. But that sentiment is being very exceptionally and forcefully forced into silence, just as the sentiments about SSM were.
The reason is more or less the same as it was for SSM: corporate America wants it, for several reasons ranging from not wanting to alienate customers who are millenials (who are extremely pro-trans) to not wanting to seem like bigots to their socio-economic peers at the cocktail party. LGBT is a main corporate, capitalist priority currently, and it’s getting pretty much the full support of almost all big enterprises. This makes the issue politically impossible, because the Democrats of course are in bed with LGBT, while the Republicans will generally do what big business wants, which in this case (as in the case of SSM) is pro-LGBT. In that context, there really isn’t any way a fight can really be won here on this issue at this point.
At the end of the day, what parents think on this issue doesn’t matter. What matters is what big business thinks, what the mainstream media thinks, what the Academy thinks and so on. Parents don’t rate, and they will be made to comply with their betters. Just watch.