Monday, August 21, 2006

Tolerance

Tolerance

Tolerance. Diversity. Live and let live. All terms that are tied to the movement to gain popular acceptance of homosexuality. While many believe that the goal is not merely to have us privately permit, but to publicly applaud such sexual non-conformity, we have always thought that we at least knew the plain meaning of the terms. Until now.

In the California Assembly, there is a relatively unnoticed move to redefine the word tolerance. If Assembly Bill 1056 passes, tolerance will no longer be a passive act, but requires that the target of the bill, school children, actively embrace these alternative lifestyle choices.

For purposes of this article, the term "school" means anypublic school that provides instruction in kindergarten or any ofgrades 1 to 12, inclusive. (e) For purposes of this article, "tolerance" means attitudes andbehaviors that convey respect toward individuals and groups,especially those individuals and groups that have been, and continueto be, systematically and historically marginalized. Tolerance doesnot mean a passive allowance or indulgence of the beliefs orpractices of another individual.

Let’s be clear. For years the homosexual community has been demanding to be left alone, screaming “keep your laws out of our bedroom”. Those of us who believe that homosexuality is wrong for reasons ranging from health to (gulp) morality, have been asked to give it a rest and agree to disagree. And for the most part, we have complied. There are no credible efforts to restrict homosexuality. The most visible movement, to ban homosexual marriage, is merely an attempt to defend the status quo.

It is fair to say that we have agreed to tolerate. However, we tolerate like we tolerate the garage band practicing next door. We allow it even though we may personally dislike it. But, we do not send them a thank you note.

Traditional tolerance is apparently not enough. In a devious move, our opponents are in essence saying, “now that you have agreed to tolerate, let us tell you what we mean by that term.” I am not exactly sure what would qualify as “attitudes and behaviors that convey respect” but I am sure that it does not include statements like “homosexuality is immoral”.

And that exposes the true agenda of the homosexual movement. It is not satisfied to leave such an issue of morality to the individual. It wants aggressive government involvement. And it wants that government not to merely tolerate but to advocate. Government is asked to change the traditional definition of marriage to include a union between two men. Government is asked to endorse a day of silence in solidarity with those who are stigmatized by their sexual identity or orientation. And now government and school children are asked to show respect for beliefs with which we disagree. Mere passive allowance or indulgence of those beliefs is not enough.

AB 1056 would provide a total of $250,000.00 to ten schools to conduct a pilot program embracing this new definition of tolerance. I would like to propose an alternative. Pay these same funds to Capitol Resource Institute and we will provide for every member of the California Legislature a state of the art workshop in tolerance training. Of course, it will concentrate exclusively on tolerance for the religious and moral beliefs of the rest of us.

Tim LeFever
Chairman of the Board

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

CRI’s Citizen Sunday

Have you been looking for a practical way to make a huge impact for pro-family values?

CRI’s Citizen Sundays program is a very simple and inexpensive way for you to make a difference in California! Citizen Sundays are scheduled this year for August, September and October.

On at least two Sundays in each month, we request that you set up a table at your church to encourage people to register to vote. You may be surprised at just how few of your fellow church members are registered to vote! It is our goal to register thousands of new Christians and encourage them to vote in the November 2006 election.

Statistics indicate that less than half of all professing Christians vote in a given election. If only Christians would vote, there could be a great turnaround for family values in the state of California and across this nation.

Here are the steps you need to take to participate in CRI’s Citizen Sundays:

1) Contact your pastor. You will need to obtain permission from your pastor before you set up a Citizen Sundays table at your church. If your pastor has any concerns about the legality of participating in Citizen Sundays, or your church’s tax status being threatened, please contact Karen England at 916-212-5607.
CRI's What Churches May and May Not Do

2) Get voter registration cards for your table. You will need to contact your county elections office or the Secretary of State to obtain voter registration cards. Here is a website link to find out the contact information for your local county elections office:
www.ss.ca.gov/elections

3) Get other optional supplies for your table. You will want to have several pens available at your table so that people can fill out voter registration forms. You might also want to have a tablecloth and perhaps a few patriotic items to decorate your table. Another good idea is to have a candy dish sitting on your table. These items will help to attract people to come to your table, and register to vote. The more people who are exposed to your information, the more successful your Citizen Sundays will be!

4) Contact CRI to let us know you will be participating. Because CRI has a goal of registering thousands of Christians to vote for this next election, we would appreciate your letting us know what days you will be participating in Citizen Sundays. We can then add you to our list of Citizen Sunday Coordinators and stay in conatct with you throughout our voter registration project.

5) Make sure YOU are also registered to vote! In the bustle of helping others to register to vote, do not overlook registering to vote yourself if you are not already registered. You can register online at the Secretary of State’s website: www.ss.ca.gov/elections/votereg1.html

Thank you for doing what you can to make California a family-friendly place to live!

As Edmund Burke said, “Evil triumphs when good men do nothing.”

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Rules? What Rules?

By Assemblyman Ray Haynes
July 3, 2006


I have tried on many occasions to explain to people exactly what happens in the legislative process, that is, how committees are organized, how they vote, who influences those committee outcomes, and how the legislative rules actually work. Usually, by the time I am finished explaining how the Legislature really works, most people look at me with a dull, blank stare, and say “that can’t be happening, you must be lying. You are just a partisan hack.”

I may be a partisan hack, but that doesn’t change reality, and this week demonstrated just how badly the Legislature can use the rules to subvert the will of the majority.

SB 1437, by Senator Sheila Kuehl, prohibits schools from using textbooks that “discriminate” against homosexuals, and requires that these textbooks “include age-appropriate study of the role and contributions of … people who are [homosexual]…” The bill was referred to both the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate Education Committee, both of which passed it out. It passed the Senate Floor on a 22-15 votes (all Senate Republicans voting no).

The bill came to the Assembly, and was similarly referred to the Assembly Education Committee and the Judiciary Committee. The Assembly Education committee passed the bill out on June 15, and sent it on to the Assembly Judiciary Committee, which set a June 20 hearing. That June 20 hearing was inexplicably cancelled by Senator Kuehl, and on June 26, the Assembly waived its rules requiring a policy hearing in Judiciary, and sent the bill straight to the floor.

How unusual is this? It has never happened before in my entire 14 years in the Legislature. A bill referred to a committee is heard by that committee before the floor votes on it. If the committee votes against the bill, it dies, no matter how popular it is with the public. In fact, the committees are designed by the Speaker to kill bills popular with the public, but not popular with Democrat constituency groups, like the trial lawyers. My “red license plate for drunk drivers” was hated by the criminal defense lawyers and the ACLU, so it died.

SB 1437 did not. It was never heard by the Judiciary committee. Why? The rules require it, but it did not happen, because the Democrat majority just waived the rules. They didn’t waive the rules for anyone else. They don’t do that for Republicans. Only Democrats. In the Legislature, we call it the rule of 41, meaning the party with 41 votes makes the rules up as they go along, mostly to benefit their legislative agenda, and to thwart the Republican agenda.

I have heard more than one person say they would not vote for this or that Republican candidate because the candidate disagrees with them on one or two issues. However, the power to appoint the committees and to waive the rules determines the outcome of thousands of bills each year. If I am pro-life, or pro-gun, or pro-property rights, or anti-tax, my vote for a Republican Speaker of the Assembly guarantees that I have a fighting chance to promote that agenda. A Democrat Speaker, however, will set up the committees to kill those issues in committee, and, if a bill they want is going to die in committee, as the Kuehl bill was about to do, the majority just waives the rules. The bill will be heard on the floor, not because a majority of Californians agree with the bill, but because the Legislature has a Democrat majority willing to violate its own rules without shame.

The rule of 41 is an important rule to remember next time you vote. Even if you disagree with a candidate on one or two issues, your failure to vote for that candidate could result in a lot of good bills with which you agree being killed in committee. Like it or not, that is the way it works.

SB 1437

The following organizations/individuals are officially and publicly supporting SB 1437.

Equality California (sponsor)
Asian Americans for Civil Rights & Equality
Bienestar Human Services
Billy DeFrank Community Center
California Alliance for Arts Education
California Association of School Social Workers
California Church Impact
California Commission on the Status of Women
California Federation of Teachers
California Safe Schools Coalition
California Teachers Association
Cesar E. Chavez Institute, San Francisco University
Commission on the Status of Women
Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, San Francisco-East Bay
Gay-Straight Alliance Network
Human Rights Campaign
L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center
Lambda Letters Project
Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund
National Association of Social Workers
National Center for Lesbian Rights
Office of California Attorney General Bill Lockyer
Our Family Coalition
Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, Palm Springs/Desert Communities Chapter
People for the American Way
Protection and Advocacy, Inc.
Public Advocates, Inc.
Safe Schools
San Francisco AIDS Foundation

AB 1056

The following organizations/individuals are officially and publicly supporting AB 1056.

Anti-Defamation League
Applied Research Center
Asian Americans for Civil Rights & Equality
Asian Pacific American Legal Center
Asian Pacific Policy & Planning Council
Bienestar
Center for Third World Organizing
Chinese American Council of Sacramento
Corona-Norco Unified School District
Equality California
Gay-Straight Alliance Network
Lambda Letters Project
Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors
MALDEF
National Council of La Raza
Organization of Chinese Americans
Our Family Coalition
West Contra Costa Unified School District
Western Inland Empire Coalition Against Hate
Yolo County Board of Supervisors
Yolo County Sheriff's Department

Supporters of AB 606

The following organizations/individuals are officially and publicly supporting AB 606.

AIDS Project Los Angeles
American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees
Asian Americans for Civil Rights & Equality
Attorney General's Office
California Schools Employees Association (AFL-CIO)
California State PTA
California Teachers Association
City of West Hollywood
Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund
Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF)
National Association of Social Workers, California Chapter
Public Advocates, Inc.
San Francisco Unified School District
Service Employees International Union, Local 1000
State Treasurer Phil Angelides

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Faith, Family and Freedom Sponsors and Hosts

Founding Sponsor
Tim and Amy LeFever
Ken and Sandy Campbell
Co-Sponsor
Ken and Stacy Mattson
Scott and Valerie Hanson
Co-Host
Congressman John Doolittle
Senator George Runner
Assemblyman Bob Huff
Assemblyman Rick Keene
Assemblyman Doug LaMalfa
Assemblywoman Sharon Runner
Assemblyman Van Tran
Assemblywoman Mimi Walters
Assemblyman Mark Wyland
Gary and Kathy Fox
Ted Gaines, Placer County Supervisor
Carl and Gretchen Hass
David and Suzanne Reade
Todd and Michelle Holden

Saturday, April 29, 2006

SB 1437 (Kuehl) – Oppose

To: Senate Education Committee Members via facsimile

Re: SB 1437 (Kuehl) – Oppose

Dear Senators:

Capitol Resource Institute strongly opposes SB 1437.

Existing law prohibits all textbooks, teaching materials, instruction, and “school-sponsored activities” from reflecting adversely upon persons based on characteristics like race, creed, handicap, etc. SB 1437 would revise the list of characteristics to include “gender” (defined as “actual or perceived”) and “sexual orientation.”

If passed, SB 1437 could potentially require gender-neutral bathrooms in our schools and all references to “husband” and “wife” or “mom and dad” removed from school textbooks as the norm.

SB 1437 not only affects textbooks and instructional materials for kindergarten and grades 1-12, it also affects all school-sponsored activities. School-sponsored activities include everything from cheerleading and sports activities to the prom. Under SB 1437 school districts could potentially be prohibited from having a “prom king and queen” because that would show bias based on gender and sexual orientation.

Under SB 1437 school districts would also possibly be required to do away with dress codes and would have to accommodate transsexuals on girl-specific or boy-specific sports teams. The full effects of SB 1437 are broad and sweeping.

SB 1437 is designed to transform our public schools into institutions that disregard all notions of the traditional family unit. SB 1437 seeks to eliminate all “stereotypes” of the traditional family so that young children are convinced to believe that families with moms and dads are irrelevant.

This will inevitably conflict with the religious and moral convictions of both students and parents.

SB 1437 would also, as amended, require history textbooks to be revised to require historical figures’ sexual orientation to be highlighted. While history should be taught accurately, there is no justification for purposefully emphasizing a person’s controversial sexual preferences to young children.

We urge you to vote “NO” on SB 1437!

Sincerely,


Karen England
Executive Director

AB 2891 (LaMalfa) – Support

To: Assembly Education Committee Members via facsimile


Re: AB 2891 (LaMalfa) – Support


Dear Assemblymembers:

Capitol Resource Institute, California’s leading pro-family public policy organization, strongly supports AB 2891.

Current law mandates that no test, questionnaire, survey, or examination containing any questions about the personal beliefs or practices of the pupil related to sex, family life, morality, religion, or any questions about the beliefs and practices of the parents of the pupil related to sex, family life, morality, and religion unless the parent is notified and consents to any such test, questionnaire, survey or examination.

This bill simply adds “gender and sexual orientation” to the current list of potentially invasive questions that require parental consent before that test, survey or questionnaire can be administered to minor children in our public schools.

Our public schools are places where children should be educated, not questioned about controversial and personal subjects.

AB 2891 helps to protect parental rights and religious liberties.

We urge you to vote “YES” on AB 2891!

Sincerely,


Karen England
Executive Director

cc: Assemblyman LaMalfa via facsimile
Assembly Education Committee via facsimile

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Government Imposed Silence

According to a memo from four associate superintendents in the Sacramento City Unified School District, that District’s Board of Education is expected to approve a resolution that will proclaim a Day of Silence “to recognize the silencing of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning people due to discrimination everyday in our society.”

The accompanying resolution is rife with references to the harassment and discrimination that affect not only lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) students, but apparently “straight allied youth and adults.” The consequence of such harassment, the resolution states, is that the victims are “effectively denied equal access to an equal education.”

Without a doubt, LGBT individuals have traditionally been regarded as different and even stigmatized by the broader population. That broader population has been asked, justifiably, to show tolerance for this nonconformity. But, in this proposed resolution and legislation pending in the California Legislature, the plea for toleration has morphed into a demand for indoctrination.

It should go without saying that in schools, and in society in general, harassment exists for many more reasons than real or perceived sexual identity. It should also go without saying that the underlying issue to this resolution, the acceptability of homosexuality, is controversial. Clearly, a major portion of the population has moral, even religious objections to such behavior. And most of these objectors do not express their objections through harassment or violence.

The proposed resolution seeks to use the authority of the school to sanction a showing of solidarity with a specific group of potential victims of harassment. In doing so, schools are not being asked to tolerate, but to advocate for the acceptability of homosexuality.

As this resolution is being debated, California’s Senate Judiciary Committee has just passed out of committee SB 1437 requiring that public school social science curriculum show the contributions of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

It is not that these government bodies are taking the wrong position on the issue of homosexuality; it is that they are taking any position at all. Not that long ago, the sexual nonconformists felt shame for their nonconformity. Increasingly, those who disapprove of this nonconformity are being stigmatized.

One mild e-mail on the subject of the resolution encourages readers to “Counter the Christian Right on Day of Silence Resolution”. The less restrained have predictably begun to label the resolution opponents as “homophobic”. The stated goal of eliminating harassment has given way to the transfer of stigma.

No credible party is in favor of violence or harassment aimed at LGBT individuals. But where is the tolerance for the beliefs of those who are convinced that this nonconformity is wrong or even immoral? School is mandatory for minors, and private education is not an option for most. Shouldn’t a parent be able to teach a child that certain behavior is wrong without the threat that the school will counter this teaching?

And how should the morally opposed student react to the school mandated silence? Their own silence could communicate sympathy on this issue. A refusal to be silent runs the risk of being labeled “homophobic” or otherwise harassed for these beliefs. Should we expect a subsequent, school board sanctioned day of silence for all students who have been harassed for their moral opposition to homosexuality?

Government advocated silence does not promote free thought. It silences opposition. In this case, it is the government that should remain silent.

Tim LeFever
Chairman of the Board

Resolution #2451


SACRAMENTO CITY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT
Resolution #2451

BOARD OF EDUCATION ACKNOWLEDGES
DAY OF SILENCE - WEDNESDAY, APRIL 26, 2006

WHEREAS, The State of California, as of January 1,2000, AB 537, enacted the California Student Safety and Violence Prevention Act of2000 to prohibit discrimination in public schools on the basis of real or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity, recognizing that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) and gender nonconforming students targeted with harassment or discrimination on these bases are effectively denied equal access to an equal education; and

WHEREAS, the Board of Education ofthe Sacramento City Unified School District passed School Board Resolution 2355 on April 29, 2004 to ensure that schools in Sacramento City Unified School District are safe places for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT), gender nonconforming, and straight allied youth and adults and directing the Superintendent to oversee
the development of plans to ensure active compliance with the California Student Safety and Violence Prevention Act of2000; and

WHEREAS, the Board of Education of the Sacramento City Unified School District urged the Superintendent and district staff to form a task force- now known as the SCUSD LGBT TaskForce which meets monthly- of district teachers,students, parents and community members to oversee such efforts to make schools safe for all students; and

WHEREAS, a crisis exists in our communities where discrimination continues against LGBT and gender nonconforming people of all ages, and fear of homosexuality, bisexuality, and transgender identity affects all students regardless of real or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity; and

WHEREAS, the Day of Silence, a national project of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network and the United States Student Association, is a student-led day of action where those who support making anti-LGBT bias unacceptable in schools take a day-long vow of silence to recognize and protest discrimination and harassment against LGBT and gender
nonconforming people; and

WHEREAS, the Board of Education ofthe Sacramento City Unified School District continues to support the implementation of AB 537 efforts to raise awareness of this injustice and, thereby, improve the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people throughout our schools and communities; now,

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Board of Education of the Sacramento City Unified School Districtacknowledges Wednesday, April 26, 2006 as the Day of Silence.
Passed and adopted this 20th day of April, 2006, by the Board of Education ofthe Sacramento City Unified School District,
State of California, by the following vote:

Monday, April 17, 2006

SB 1437 Floor Alert

********FLOOR ALERT********

April 17, 2006

Re: SB 1437 (Kuehl) – Oppose

Dear Senators:

Capitol Resource Institute strongly opposes SB 1437.

Existing law prohibits all textbooks, teaching materials, instruction, and “school-sponsored activities” from reflecting adversely upon persons based on characteristics like race, creed, handicap, etc. SB 1437 would revise the list of characteristics to include “gender” (defined as “actual or perceived”) and “sexual orientation.”

If passed, SB 1437 could potentially require gender-neutral bathrooms in our schools and all references to “husband” and “wife” or “mom and dad” removed from school textbooks as the norm.

SB 1437 not only affects textbooks and instructional materials for kindergarten and grades 1-12, it also affects all school-sponsored activities. School-sponsored activities include everything from cheerleading and sports activities to the prom. Under SB 1437 school districts could potentially be prohibited from having a “prom king and queen” because that would show bias based on gender and sexual orientation.

Under SB 1437 school districts would also possibly be required to do away with dress codes and would have to accommodate transsexuals on girl-specific or boy-specific sports teams. The full effects of SB 1437 are broad and sweeping.

SB 1437 is designed to transform our public schools into institutions that disregard all notions of the traditional family unit. SB 1437 seeks to eliminate all “stereotypes” of the traditional family so that young children are convinced to believe that families with moms and dads are irrelevant.

This will inevitably conflict with the religious and moral convictions of both students and parents.

SB 1437 would also, as amended, require history textbooks to be revised to require historical figures’ sexual orientation to be highlighted. While history should be taught accurately, there is no justification for purposefully emphasizing a person’s controversial sexual preferences to young children.

We urge you to vote “NO” on SB 1437!

Sincerely,

Karen England
Executive Director