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Leave religious agenda out of anti-bullying efforts

August 26, 2012
Bryan Schultz, State Center , Times-Republican

John Anderson's recent letter attempting to describe "the gay agenda" is as off-target as it is offensive.

How dare Mr. Anderson make the very real problem of bullying about the victims? Whether or not Mr. Anderson agrees with homosexuality is beside the point: shouldn't all children be free from being terrorized, beaten and harassed? Or is there only enough room in his heart for decency toward those "sin-free" enough to meet his standards? Let's keep the focus of anti-bullying efforts on the bullies and those who make excuses for them and leave the "religious agenda" out.

Mr. Anderson, it's not impossible to express your displeasure at a gay person's lifestyle (you just did, very publicly) But requiring someone adhere to your religious beliefs in order to get a job at a factory, store, restaurant or other business stands against the most basic ideas of freedom.

If your church allows gay marriages, that is an issue you should take up with your church - the government does not mandate your church perform them. If your church does not perform gay marriages, I'm not sure how you're "putting up" with anything. What happens in my place of worship and religion of choice should be up to me, not you.

I'm interested you commented that "that is so gay" is only mildly derogatory. Why do you get to decide for gay people everywhere that it's no big deal? Would you use the same argument for "that is so black," "that is so Mexican" or "that is so like a woman?"

Finally, you can still discuss matters of what you believe are sins to your children. Your slippery slope argument that in some imagined future children will turn in their parents for discussing these issues is ludicrous. While we outlaw discrimination of many types in our country, you are still free to teach your children bigotry, hatred and fear if that is your desire. We still allow Klansmen and skinheads to teach their children whatever they want, many years after the civil rights movement, so I don't think you have to worry that teaching your children homosexuality is a sin will land you in jail anytime soon.



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