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Brave, articulate young man!
#1
Here is a news report of a teacher who was disciplined with loss of work and earnings for attempting to deal with a homophobic incident in his classroom. He was charged with violating the student's rights to free speech.

Mich. Teacher Ejects Student for Anti-Gay Remarks - ABC News

At the school board's hearing,a student from another district, fourteen year old Graeme Taylor, gave this very articulate presentation in what must have been a very intimidating situation. What an achievement!



I am a frequent visitor to schools and I have generally taken it upon myself, if occasion demands, to deal directly with any homophobic incident in my workshops. I have never felt it necessary to throw someone out of the session. I'm in a fortunate situation, maybe. I'm generally only in a school for a day or less and the worst that can happen is they don't invite me back.

What would you have done?
#2
RespectGraham is my new hero.......seriously......

When I grow up I want to be just like him
#3
good lad! Smile

I'm pleasently surprised at the level of clarity and delivery for such a young guy, very impressive. If only we could have more kids like this in schools.
#4
Sil Wrote:... If only we could have more kids like this in schools.
You know I think there are plenty of them out there. Let's not be fooled by the popular image of grunting, monosyllabic adolescents. This young man is, though, just a bit exceptional Confusedmile: and his parents must be pretty cool too.
#5
I saw this on another site, and wow this kid is amazing. If the teacher is prosecuted or punished then those people have no feelings whatsoever.
In the end, it boils down to two simple choices. Either you do or you don't. You'd think with all the problems in this world, there'd be more answers. It's not fair... but its the way things are. The choice is yours. ~ Zidane Tribal

Hope is comforting, it allows us to accept fate no matter how tragic it may be. ~ Yunalesca

"Απο μακρυά και αγαπημένοι παρά απο κοντά και μαλωμένοι"

There's not a word yet, for old friends who've just met ~ Gonzo
#6
While I have to identify with what the teacher was trying to do, I'm not sure it was appropriate behavior in a public school. Homophobic bullying shouldn't be tolerated, but wearing a pro-gay rights t-shirt to a class is kinda inviting discussion, and when you invite discussion differing opinions should be tolerated. When I was in high school the biology teacher opened the floor for the nature/nurture debate about homosexuality (gay marriage was just recently legalized in Canada that year), and in a predominantly working class neighbourhood with a lot of children of Caribbean immigrants, you can expect that a lot of anti-gay, often religiously motivated, opinions were expressed. The teacher responded with debate not punishment, which I think is the appropriate response.

If someone in that class had started insulting another student directly, or using slurs, then kicking them out of class would have been more understandable.
When a subject is highly controversial — and any question about sex is that — one cannot hope to tell the truth. One can only show how one came to hold whatever opinion one does hold. One can only give one's audience the chance of drawing their own conclusions as they observe the limitations, the prejudices, the idiosyncrasies of the speaker.
- Virginia Woolf
#7
I am in agreement, that this young man is exemplary in his intelligence, support, and martyrdom. However, it does, not boil down to eloquent speeches, and unflinching support. It is an amendment issue, which will have to be supported, if it is to be respected. The teacher's punishment must stand to preserve the law and un-invite future acts of bias in a public forum.
#8
XRIMO Wrote:I saw this on another site, and wow this kid is amazing. If the teacher is prosecuted or punished then those people have no feelings whatsoever.

... AND no sense of justice?
#9
But then what am I talking about? What was the teacher blamed for?
#10
The teacher got a slap on the wrist, a one day suspension.

I don't think it's so cut and dry how much right a teacher really has to silence reprehensible opinions. Students have a right to be protected against discrimination, and the students were being deliberately provocative, but I don't think it really merited punishment. Their insolence for not dropping the subject when asked to warranted punishment more than what they said.

princealbertofb Wrote:But then what am I talking about? What was the teacher blamed for?

A student came in with a Confederate flag belt buckle, and was asked to remove it. Another student asked what the difference was between the Confederate flag and the Gay Pride flag was, and he responded to the teacher's response with something along the lines of he not accepting gays because of his religion. The teacher told him he couldn't say that in class, and when the kid repeated it, he was put in detention.

Teacher's are placed in uncomfortable positions, I don't think his intention was to punish the kids opinion, but it's silly to punish something when it has been brought up within the context of a debate.
When a subject is highly controversial — and any question about sex is that — one cannot hope to tell the truth. One can only show how one came to hold whatever opinion one does hold. One can only give one's audience the chance of drawing their own conclusions as they observe the limitations, the prejudices, the idiosyncrasies of the speaker.
- Virginia Woolf


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