Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Teaching Children to Be Homophobes

The following is a video of a young child singing in church that is absolutely heartbreaking.


The child sings:

The Bible’s right, somebody’s wrong.
The Bible’s right, somebody’s wrong.
Romans one, twenty six and twenty seven;
Ain’t no homos gonna make it to Heaven.

The congregation claps loudly, stand and cheers.  In the background a man voices can be heard yelling, "that's my boy."

There are few things a parent can do that are more disgusting than teaching an innocent child to hate.  This poor little boy had no idea what he was advocating and the positive reinforcement that he received will teach him that his speech was correct and worthy of praise.  That this was done in the name of praising God sickens me. There was nothing righteous about this at all.

I wonder if it occurred to the audience as they cheered and clapped that this child could potentially grow up to be gay himself and the harm to his mental health that would inevitably occur growing up to hate himself as a matter of form. I hope for the sake of this child that he is straight because he would most certainly experience rejection from his family and the community in which he is being raised. 

This little boy has no idea what he is advocating, but what is certain is that being raised to see homosexuality as a sin and being rewarded for it means that he is a future bigot in the making.  If he is not exposed to the idea that this is wrong and that there is nothing sinful about being gay, one can be certain that these beliefs will become cemented and he will go on to cause untold harm to anyone in the GLBT community.

When babies are born, they are a completely blank slate and it is their family and their communities who teach them all of the lessons they need to grow and learn.  There is nothing inherently natural about teaching a child to hate and as I have seen from my experience as a parent, teaching my child to respect all forms of love does not cause harm, but instead results in a child who is social justice minded and invested in equality.  Destruction is quick to check my speech, if he even suspects I have said something homophobic and this is something that fills me with pride.  It is how I know without a doubt that I have done at least one thing right in the raising of my child.

This is why I believe that it is essential for schools to begin teaching positive messages about GLBT people.  Children should know that GLBT people are a part of human history and have positively advanced our societies.  It is the only possible way to counter the hate that is being taught in the home.  Parental rights be damned.  We are all going to have to live with the results of this taught bigotry and that is exactly why we need to find a way to combat it if we can.

How did watching this video effect you and do you believe that there is any hope for this child?