The Safe Schools program has always had more than a few lose threads, and more than a few people have pointed them out and suggested we start again. We are not against an anti-bullying program in our schools, after all, programs already exist and are doing an excellent job. But there is always room for improvement.
One of the main issues with Safe Schools is that it is less about bullying and more about educating children to adhere to a very set paradigm of human sexuality, a perspective that is not held by millions of Australians. In addition, there is growing consensus in the medical and scientific community that some of the theories presented in Safe Schools (as fact) are in fact wrong and dangerous to children’s health (cf. sexual orientation and gender identity).
While it shouldn’t need to be said again, but because certain politicians have chosen to ignore it, the chief architect of Safe Schools, Roz Ward, has explained the agenda behind the program,
“Programs like the Safe Schools Coalition are making some difference but we’re still a long way from liberation…Marxism offers the hope and the strategy needed to create a world where human sexuality, gender and how we relate to our bodies can blossom in extraordinarily new and amazing ways that we can only try to imagine today.”
Up until now it has been easy to pretend Roz Ward misspoke, and even easier to dismiss community concerns, especially from those who acknowledge a Christian faith: just call them bigots and homophobes, and it’s game over. Why would the public consider the views of a bigot? I certainly wouldn’t be inclined to do so.
However, the game isn’t over. The Safe Schools agenda has this week been further exposed. A petition of more than 17,000 signatures from the NSW Chinese community has been tabled in the News South Wales Parliament, asking for the program to be removed from schools. And today, The Australian newspaper is reporting that the Indian community in Melbourne share these concerns.
How will the Victorian Government and certain lobby groups respond to these ethnic groups? I sincerely hope they don’t resort to the kinds of ad hominem attacks that they haven been relying on for quietening other groups.
Let’s be honest, in the name of religion there are some crazies out there, and there are bigots and homophobic individuals. But for the most part, the concerns we have heard articulated are reasoned and genuine, expressing concerns for children who have questions over their sexual identity. No body wants to see any children being bullied for any reason, and it is good for our schools to provide tools to assist students in understanding and caring for one another.
It is time for Governments across Australia to give ear to the concerns of the public over Safe Schools. We can do better for our children.