Sunday, May 17, 2009

First the library, next the public schools?

Hi everyone,

A comment from a previous posting deserves a higher profile.... as anticipated, it looks like West Bend's Puritans have moved on to the public schools.
This group has begun work on the next 'issue' by requesting the names of all of the books currently used in the public school system. So this book/library issue will not go away. And no one should be fooled, it IS about homosexuality.. and those who support anyone who is homosexual/questioning.

It will not stop.

I agree that the people of this group have every right to believe what they choose to believe, but they cannot force their religious positions on the population of our community at large. I am tired of them. I am tired of their divisiveness and their hate and their sense of entitlement that their every demand be met.

We'll find out how far this goes -- a lot of human thinking has changed since 1636 and, for these folks, all of it needs to be squashed back into pre-Enlightenment darkness.

At least they'll always have work.



beesbess said...

Mark and Morningstar,
Although I'm not suprised, how do you know they are targeting the schools? I haven't read it anywhere and am wondering where I can get more information. Thanks. This is absurd. It has to be stopped. Although I agree that they have the right to say and practice what they choose, our kids have the right to go to school without all this distraction.

Eema-le said...

It's clear from Maziarka's previous work in her capacity as "citizen advocate", as well as her blog, that this current library issue is indeed about homosexuality.

Her demands have changed, but her convictions remain the same.

We need to ask ourselves, individually and as a community, if we are willing to cater to intolerance and bigotry. If our answer is no, then we need to do everything in our power to send the message that we will not put up with these thinly veiled attempts at harassing, denigrating, and disenfranchising members of the LGBT community.

We are all entitled to our individual rights and freedoms. However, my rights end where another person's rights begin. I am entitled to believe for example that homosexuality is a sin/immoral/etc., but I don't have a right to harass or discriminate against homosexuals. It is not my place to dictate morality to the community, neither is it WBCFSL's place to do so.

I'm sure that Ginny (I have no idea what her group's name was when she was fighting the HS's harassment policy) wouldn't want students telling her children that Christianity is immoral, yet she wanted the Christian students to be able to tell GLBT students that they are immoral.

I guess her kids wouldn't be in that position to begin with since they are homeschooled. A fact which makes me question why she so fervently insists on forcing her views on policy decisions in our schools.

justanotherbovine said...

In a recent profile published in the Daily News, it mentioned that Ginny has 4 children (ages 16,17, 20, and 29), that they were homeschooled "before going to high school in the district". Not sure if that means West Bend High School or somewhere else. She also served on the School District's Human Growth & Development Committee. That being said, I guess the issue of not having children in the school system (and I don't know it that is the case) should not necessarily forfeit one's "right" to be involved (or, a cynical me would say "would not forfeit the right to interfere in the upbringing of other people's children").

We do want to be fair here, I think. And I think BeesBess raises a cautionary point - probably shouldn't be reacting to something that has not been confirmed.

Mpeterson said...

We'll find out ...

But I'd also like to agree with Bovine on this point: children in the district or not, we have to respect their rights to complain. Failure to respect the rights of others puts our own at risk. Now, we don't have to agree and we can fight through our disagreements in the ballot box and the courts, but we do have to respect each other's rights to wage that fight.

From what I've seen over the past 30 years, I'm not always sure the neocon right wing would be as willing to defend *my* rights, but there you are.

MorninStar said...

I should clarify that I do not believe that this group has 'moved on' from the library issue but that they consider their interest in the Public School curriculum/books an expansion of their current crusade. I have heard (although I cannot confirm) that they have also requested some type of expanded list from the library.. I am not sure what criteria they have placed upon this request. I am also not sure what their exact intention is with the list of books from the public school, I can only guess.

Then.. there is the question of how I know. *sigh* In this I will be a bit cryptic because I do not wish to use names. I live close to one of the core members of this group and it is (always has been) something. If it is not this issue, it is another. It never ends. And they are very dogged in their pursuits. I have always respected (and tried to be tolerant) of what another person choses to do with their life, how they chose to worship, etc.. but when that courtesy is not extended to others.. I've been shoved once too often for the sake of 'getting along'. I am tired of being told I am going to hell for anything that differs from this groups beliefs, be it watching Channel 10 (it has programs with evolution on it) to believing that the Earth is more than 6,000 years old. If this extremism, this 'righteous' vitriolic hatred, toward fellow human beings is what their faith/religion is all about.. *shakes head*

What I 'know' comes from past experience, students in the school system, and knowing/talking to people who work in certain areas.

beesbess, you're right.. it's a distraction. An expensive one.. in time, money, manpower.. and at the sake of harmony in our community. I believe this group will not stop because they view their crusade(s) is/are earning them a place in heaven.. being persecuted for the sake of their faith & such.

Eema-le said...

I agree that she has a right to complain, but she doesn't have a right to dictate policy to the high school, library, or any other government entity, especially when she has a clear agenda against a certain group of people.

Judi Wheeldon- Activist said...

I receive google alerts each time LGBT comes up in the news or a blog. I have to comment.

Iowa is already preparing for the education of LGBT lifestyle and preventing further bullying of this targeted group.

President of the Council Bluffs school board is a Pastor for United Methodist Church and as I feel should keep children priority and not support educating them on homosexuality. Public school is not the place.

I support Ginny and Jim and this Wednesday I am speaking to the board at the Public Library and will also continue to address the issue with the schools.

I am not criticizing one's lifestyle but my children shouldn't have to learn what or how they live. School is for learning reading, writing and math and not to be educated on who others are sleeping with.

We aren't bigots for not accepting the "lifestyle" or "choices" of others, we are parents with religous beliefs and upbringing that continue to support traditional family values.

Mpeterson said...

Thank you Judy,

I think the real answer to this is the ongoing conversation itself.

But how would you feel if I said that my traditional values include making sure all kids (say 12 and up) understand sex well enough to start learning how to make good decisions when they're young? We do this with math and science, basic economics, and home ec.

Part of this surely includes the idea that there are all sorts of people in the world that may not be the same as they are.

Or do you believe that all sexual education should be left with parents?

beesbess said...

Thank you for being willing to discuss how you know about these issues, and how involved this group is. It is becoming even more important that the community, common council and library board take a stand and stop this. This is a public library, not a private home.
Ms. Wheeldon- Being gay is not a "choice" or a "lifestyle" as you put it. It is disheartening to hear people make understanding that one is gay sound like something wrong. It is a sad commentary on our culture that we have not progressed far enough that we can't see past our fear and appreciate people for who they are rather than what their sexual orientation is. As my then- seven year old put it a few years ago," It's all love,right mom? What's the big deal?"

Kristina said...

It is true. I talked to public library director, Michael Tyree, tonight at the CC meeting. He confirmed it was true that action has been done.
So that has been confirmed. A request has been made for a list to be made available with all the books in the public schools libraries.
Yep yep yep tis true.
Ring around the rosie..... I won't finish my revised version for censorship purposes.

beesbess said...

Ok. Hmm. So now the next step is the school libraries? Given that the Maziarka's and the group they are part of refuse to explain how they will go about reclassification in the public library, who would be responsible for doing it, what criteria they are expected to be held to, who would pay for it, not to mention the lawsuits that would come of it, just what do they plan to do to the school libraries?
One more thing: Why is an "activist"(her word) from Iowa speaking to your library board about this? I'm from Tosa and I can't even have a legitimate say in it because it's not my community.

Anonymous said...

Maziarka has placed an open records request on e-mails between school librarians and a district employee at the Educational Service Center. She is looking for many of the books that she's contested at the public library. What she'll find, I suspect, is that many school libraries throughout the state (both public and parochial) do have these books in their libraries - so the crusade of "Christian morality" will continue and Maziarka will continue to be in the spotlight, even though, according to her profile as one of Washington County's most influential people (sic), she doesn't like the limelight (sic).

Anonymous said...

If my understanding is correct... there is a group conspiring to change public freedom access by ilegal means... I thought this was an individual complaining... now it appears to be a group consciously intending to change policy and use up taxpayer money to do it. They are influencing elected officials to break with their lawyers advice and lay the community open to law suits that will last for years as it wends through the courts. Next time someone wants a worthy community project funded.... look to this group who squandered the communitiees cash on lawyers. Look to the elected officials to have all manner of excuses to not fund schools or roads because they erred (perhaps on purpose, perhaps not) and allowed what could have been handled via constitional process to escalate into this worldwide fiasco of West Bend bashing. How selfish and cruel of this group who don't even use the public schools to hold the whole community hostage. The kids lose, the parents lose, the tax payers lose, but the constitution will win after time. Good luck West Bend!

Also a Christian! said...

How a minority of Christians have come to speak for and represent the great majority of us is beyond me.

When the Maziarkas talk about making libraries safe...I have to wonder what they would do to make our churches safer. Fact is ... churches, by nature of their ministry of compassion, often welcome into their midsts some pretty sketchy characters. Hence, many of our churches unwittingly harbor a pedaphile or two among them.

That is the individual parent's responsibility to exercise vigilance in protecting their child (no matter how safe a place may seem!). That means to your kids!

These attempts at censorship do nothing more than give the "advocates" involved some false sense of security that says...what? That they don't have to talk about these issues with their children? That any public place is ever going to be an entirely risk-free zone where children don't need supervision and parental guidance?

I ramble...sorry...I'm mad.

Maziarkas and friends...Get off your Christian high-horses and come down to where Christian humility demands you be! Take responsibility for yourselves and stop judging others!

Anonymous said...

i really wish i was able to see the article in the paper. unfortunately, i was too busy being locked up out of insecurity.

i want to blame the generation gap. generation y seems to be a lot more open-minded than their common baby-boomer counterparts.

nevertheless, we're all human, and unless deemed incapable by the government, we all have a right to bitch. (ooh, i said a naughty word.)

My point is that I think the big guys that know who they are, pull the strings more than the general public is able to realize. So many people fall "sheep", or in Washington County's case "cow" to having someone else's education educate them.

(The shirt "Blame my Parents" says it best.)

I think the baby boomers who can't retire at social services are more insecure than we give them credit for. (Why did they go into that business anyway?)

So, I leave with this. We (Or rather those unfortunate to be stranded in WashCo) live in a community where "the big guys" are educating the youth with unrealistic ideals and the youth isn't questioning what should really be questioned.