In a WorldNetDaily piece, Bob Unruh advanced the argument that California legislation aimed at having the history of the LGBT movement taught more extensively in social studies classes is "the worst school sexual indoctrination ever" and "sexual brainwashing." In fact, the bill instructs educators to teach about the "role and contribution of ... lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans."
WND Forwards Argument That California Bill Will Lead To "Sexual Brainwashing"
WorldNetDaily: "Democrats Advance 'Lesbians-As-Role Models' Plan." Unruh devoted a WorldNetDaily article headlined "Democrats advance 'lesbians-as-role models' plan," to advancing the argument by anti-gay activist Randy Thomasson that California legislation is "target[ing] children for sexual brainwashing":
A band of six Democrats in the California state Senate voted today to advance a bill that has been described as "the worst school sexual indoctrination ever" and would require that school children be taught to admire "lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual" role models.
S.B. 48 is sponsored by state Sen. Mark Leno, who boasts on his website of founding a business with his "life partner, Douglas Jackson," who later died of AIDS complications.
Randy Thomasson of the family-promoting SaveCalifornia.com said parents "don't want and children don't need 'LGBTIQ' role models in school."
In a letter to Rep. Alan Lowenthall, chairman of the Senate Education Committee where the vote - six Democrats in favor and three Republicans opposed - was recorded, Thomasson's organization had opposed the plan.
"On behalf of the millions of parents we serve and the children they love, please oppose S.B. 48, which is the most radical sexual indoctrination ever of children in California public schools, which are supposed to be about academics," the letter said.
"S.B. 48 is intolerant. It would force - much more than recommend - all local school boards, public school teachers, and history textbooks to teach children as young as kindergarten to admire 'lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans' as their personal role models," he wrote.
"Fathers and mothers who love their children and want moral values for their children cannot trust Democrat legislators, homosexuals or teacher unions, all of which conspired to push forward this perverse bill," he told WND. [WorldNetDaily, 3/23/11]
In Fact, Bill Calls For "Study Of Role And Contributions" Of Members Of LGBT Community
Current California Law Requires Schools To Teach About Contributions By "Black Americans" And "Other Ethnic" And Cultural Groups. From California's Education Code:
Instruction in social sciences shall include the early history of California and a study of the role and contributions of both men and women, black Americans, American Indians, Mexicans, Asians, Pacific Island people, and other ethnic groups to the economic, political, and social development of California and the United States of America, with particular emphasis on portraying the role of these groups in contemporary society. [California Education Code § 51204.5, accessed 3/24/11]
Bill In Question Would Also Require Schools To Teach About Contributions By LGBT And "European American" Communities. California S.B. 48 would amend the California Education Code to add "lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans" to the list of groups whose contributions are discussed in social studies classes:
Instruction in social sciences shall include the early history of California and a study of the role and contributions of both men and women ... Native Americans, African Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, European Americans, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans, and members of other ethnic and cultural groups to the economic, political, and social development of California and the United States of America, with particular emphasis on portraying the role of these groups in contemporary society [S.B. 48, via CA.OpenGovernment.org, 12/13/10]
Bill Sponsor: S.B. 48 Would Require Schools To Start "Teaching Students About Historical LGBT Figures" And The "LGBT Equal Rights Movement." Upon the introduction of the Fair, Accurate, Inclusive, and Respectful (FAIR) Education Act, also known as S.B. 48, California State Senator Mark Leno (D, SF) described the bill in a press release. He stated that the bill requires public schools to include historical contributions of the LGBT community by adding "the LGBT community to the existing list of under-represented cultural and ethnic groups already listed in the state's inclusionary education requirements." From the December 13 press release:
"Most textbooks don't include any historical information about the LGBT movement, which has great significance to both California and U.S. history," said Senator Leno (D-San Francisco). "Our collective silence on this issue perpetuates negative stereotypes of LGBT people and leads to increased bullying of young people. We can't simultaneously tell youth that it's OK to be yourself and live an honest, open life when we aren't even teaching students about historical LGBT figures or the LGBT equal rights movement." [State Sen. Mark Leno's press release, 12/13/10]
Bill Would Also Expand Existing Anti-Discrimination Law To Ban Instructional Materials That Discriminate On The Basis Of "Sexual Orientation." Under the proposed bill, existing laws would be expanded so that governing boards would be prohibited "from adopting instructional material that contain any matter reflecting adversely" on people of specific "sexual orientation." From the California Legislative Counsel's description of S.B. 48:
Existing law prohibits a governing board from adopting instructional materials that contain any matter reflecting adversely upon persons because of their race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, sex, handicap, or occupation, or that contain any sectarian or denominational doctrine or propaganda contrary to law.
This bill would revise the list of characteristics included in this provision to include race or ethnicity, gender, religion, disability, nationality, and sexual orientation, or other characteristic listed as specified. [S.B. 48, via CA.OpenGovernment.org, 12/13/10]
S.B. 48 Instructs Schools To "Include Materials That Accurately Portray The Role And Contribution" Of LGBT Americans. From the California Legislative Counsel's description of S.B. 48:
Existing law requires that when adopting instructional materials for use in the schools, governing boards shall include materials that accurately portray the role and contribution of culturally and racially diverse groups including Native Americans, African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, and European Americans to the total development of California and the United States.
This bill would revise the list of culturally and racially diverse groups to also include Pacific Islanders, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans, and other ethnic and cultural groups. [S.B. 48, via CA.OpenGovernment.org, 12/13/10]
Conservative Media Have History Of Misrepresenting CA Legislature On LGBT Issues
Fox & Friends Previously Misrepresented S.B. 48. On the December 17, 2010, edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, co-host Gretchen Carlson teased a story about S.B. 48 by asking, "Coming up next, a new lesson plan being added to our kids' schools: gay rights?" She then asked: "But should it be starting in kindergarten?" The on-air text while she was speaking read: "Lessons In Homosexuality?" [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 12/17/10]
Tucker Carlson: "There Isn't Social Science That Demonstrates That Teaching Children About The Glories Of The Gay Rights Movement Will Reduce Bullying." Also on Fox & Friends, Fox News contributor Tucker Carlson said:
CARLSON: Well, I mean, not only is it -- first of all, it's unproven. There isn't social science that demonstrates that teaching children about the glories of the gay rights movement will reduce bullying. That just doesn't -- we don't know that. But more to the point, again, that's not the purpose of school. The purpose of -- it may be the purpose of church, it may something that parents should do, it may be something that civic leaders want to take on, but the purpose of school is to educate children and this not only differs from that aim, it gets in the way of it.
DOOCY: Ultimately it just looks like somebody is trying to put a pro-gay agenda in schools.
CARLSON: Well, it's interest group politics, right. [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 12/17/10]
O'Reilly Falsely Claimed CA Bill Would Prevent Teachers From Discussing Convicts. During the May 8, 2006, edition of his Fox News show, Bill O'Reilly claimed that, under a California bill that would require textbooks to recognize the accomplishments of LGBT figures, "if you are a teacher ... you're not going to be able to say bad things about [convicted murderer] Jeffrey Dahmer," because Dahmer was "a gay cannibal." In fact, the proposal, S.B. 1437, would add the role and contributions of LGBT people" to the list of "traditionally underrepresented groups," whose historical contributions, under current state law, are required to be included in "textbooks and other school instructional materials." [Fox News, The O'Reilly Factor, 5/8/06; S.B. 1437 via Media Matters, 5/9/06]
Malkin Suggested CA Legislature's Decision Not To Honor Boy Scouts Because Of The Organization's Anti-Gay Policy Is A "Politically Correct Jihad." During the April 15, 2010, edition of Fox & Friends, Michelle Malkin commented on the decision of California legislators to not honor the 100th anniversary of Boy Scouts because of the group's ban on gay or atheist leaders. She stated the decision was "a politically correct jihad" and "bigotry against the Boy Scouts." [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 4/15/10]
Unruh Also Has A History Of Smears Against The Gay Community
Unruh On House Passage Of Don't Ask Don't Tell Repeal Bill: "Now Members Of Congress Have The Choice Of Following The Expert Military Advice Offered By The U.S. Veterans ... Or Lady Gaga." From WorldNetDaily:
During World War II it was Iwo Jima, Guadalcanal, El Alamein and Okinawa. Then came Korea's Pusan, Inchon and Chosin. In Vietnam it was the Tet Offensive and Battle of Saigon. Thousands of battles followed in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Now members of Congress have the choice of following the expert military advice offered by the U.S. veterans who gave their life's blood, sweat and tears on those far-flung battlefields -- or Lady Gaga. [WorldNetDaily via Media Matters, 12/15/10]
Unruh Article Portrays Bill Aimed At Reducing Sexual Orientation And Gender Identity Discrimination As Part Of "Homo-Genda" To "Mandate Indoctrination." In February 2010, Unruh advanced false claims by anti-gay "critics" that a proposed bill would grant Obama administration official and longtime right-wing target Kevin Jennings "almost unlimited authority to mandate indoctrination in public schools." The bill -- intended to reduce discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity in public schools -- does not mention Jennings. In fact, it does not provide any official with "almost unlimited authority," or "mandate indoctrination." [WorldNetDaily via Media Matters, 2/10/10]
Unruh Claims Education Department Official Boasted About "Us[ing] The Concept Of 'Safety' In Schools To Promote Homosexual Advocacy In Public Schools." In a WorldNetDaily "exclusive," Unruh wrote that Jennings' former group GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network) "promotes homosexuality in schools" and that Jennings "once boasted that he introduced homosexual advocacy into the school system in Massachusetts by manipulating the message presented to lawmakers. ... [H]e gave a speech in which he described how he has used the concept of 'safety' in schools to promote homosexual advocacy in public schools in Massachusetts." [WorldNetDaily via Media Matters, 9/17/09]