You’ve heard of the “It Gets Better” campaign? Well, according to one Tennessee legislator ,”It Just Gets Worse”.
Christy Diane Farr writes an excellent article about the rhetoric used by the ignorant to allow- and justify- the death of our children. Excerpt:
Image by Rickydavid via Flickr
The next morning, she received a response from Tennessee State Representative John Ragan that sounded as if it had been taken straight from Hitler’s playbook. I am not exaggerating, even a little, and invite you to go here and read for yourself.
I cried as she read me the message. I thought I would throw up. His final point literally took my breath away:
“Examining another statistic, it has been well known for a decade that suicide is attempted much more frequently in the homosexual community than in the heterosexual community (Mathy, Cochran, Olsen, & Mays, 2009). This same source pointed out that, on average, suicide is approximately three times more likely among homosexuals than heterosexuals.
“As a fitting critical thought question, it could be asked if other identifiable groups that engage in behavior of which ‘others may disapprove’ commit suicide at similar rates? In other words, do prostitutes, pedophiles, polygamists, murders, etc., commit suicide at the same, or similar, rates to homosexual behavior practitioners? If similar rates were hypothetically so (not proven to be the case), do these behavior practitioners commit suicide at a higher rate because someone may have disapproved of their behavior or for other reasons? Should society avoid disapproving of pedophilia, prostitution, murder, etc., because practitioners of those behaviors may commit suicide at higher rates?”
The author makes a lot of amazing points- chief among them is that for a lot of of kids, the “It gets better” message isn’t coming through- because teachers and legislators and parents are stifling the message- and countermanding it. But there is a need to stay vigilant, there is a need to speak up- and it’s because of one simple philosophy:
The list of the others–the “they” who are allowing their fear and hatred to erode our National integrity–goes on and on, but the truth is that this radical lesbian-headed household doesn’t even believe in “they.” We teach our children about how everyone is equal, even those who think we are not. We believe that human difference is real, that it’s important, and that diversity, inclusivity, and integrity are what make us strong–as individuals, families, communities, states, counties, and as a planet.
We live by one guiding principle: Be nice or leave.
That means we don’t make life harder for other people (rinse your dishes before they go in the dishwasher and dispose of your waste responsibly). It means do your best so the collective “we” can be at our best. We tread lightly on the planet. We disagree respectfully because we certainly won’t always agree, but we can always do it respectfully and intelligently.
Oh, and we ask for what we need because we understand that it’s codependent and manipulative (prime examples of the “not nice” that can result in being invited to leave) to expect others to know what you need and desire.
Read the rest of this excellent essay here.