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Saturday, September 3, 2011

The Catholic school system needs to get its hands out of our pockets

And that's just for starters.

The travesty that took place this week is common knowledge by now. Activist Leanne Iskander, who's got more courage in her little finger than most people have in their whole bodies, has been threatened with disciplinary action if she continues her advocacy for gay-straight alliances.

From Xtra:

Leanne Iskander has been blocked from starting an “LGBT support group” at her school and told that if she continues to advocate for gay-straight alliances she will face “disciplinary action.” Iskander, the founder of Catholic Students for GSAs (CS4GSA), and her parents were summoned for a meeting with St Joseph Catholic Secondary School principal Jeff Quenneville on Sept 1 to discuss her latest proposal for a GSA, Iskander says. The principal told her unequivocally that “an LGBT support group or GSA will never be permitted in any Catholic school because the bishops forbid them.” 

And that's subsequent to a Wednesday-night meeting of the Toronto District Catholic School Board that apparently set a new low for bigotry, hatred and intolerance. It isn't enough that the board banned gay-straight alliances – apparently even that didn't go far enough for some parents, judging from the twitterstream below.

From Justin Beach:

This is a Church, mind you, that is against a woman’s right to a safe abortion, against the use of birth control, that tells people in Africa that condoms cause aids and that has never fully responded to what appears to be systemic child abuse within the Church. It is lead by a man who has been openly homophobic and who at various points in his career been deeply critical of other faiths. Although he has apologized for some of those remarks Benedict was once a member of the Hitler Youth. Intolerance, from him, seems not so much an occasional slip or misunderstanding, but rather part of a pattern. Again, this is where the anti-gay forces at the Toronto Catholic School Board feel that they should be getting direction from, rather than the government of Ontario or the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

On those occasions when they lost a vote on any of this language the pro-hate supporters in attendance became livid, accusing the Board of being anti-Catholic and “communist”.

You'd think after more than two thousand years, they'd have had enough time to absorb Christ's message of love and redemption, but no. Apparently it's just fine with them if LGBT students are ostracized as sinners and bullied into committing suicide, because as homosexuals they're going to hell anyway.

I wonder where they shop for footwear? I'm no expert, but it seems to me that you can't wear the shoes of the fisherman when you've got a festering pile of hate where your soul is supposed to be.

Just so I understand this: where human rights conflict with denominational rights, it's the latter that rule, right? So these people are perfectly content to follow the diktats of an authoritarian medieval institution that's sanctioned torture, genocide and continental plunder. And covered up for and enabled widespread sexual abuse of children for decades.

All these Republican dickheads screaming about the threat of sharia law in the Sewer of StupidTM to the south might want to focus on a threat that's a little closer to home. Because if this is what Catholic doctrine is all about ...

But never mind the Republicans. We've got an election in Ontario coming up. Seems to me that the candidates should be pinned down on whether they're going to keep funding this nonsense with our tax dollars.

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  1. When I heard a Catholic school board representative talk on CFRB radio, she stated that it would be fine to have an anti-bullying club that included discussions about bullying against gays youth. However, she also stated that it would be inappropriate to have a Gay-Straight Alliance because other students get bullied besides gays. Essentially, the Catholic board wants to limit discussion about gays to bullying issues. The board does not want any GSA group which can advocate for gay rights.

  2. If the school board didn't allow CS4GSA to speak, were they in breach of their own organization's regulations? If so, could a legal case be made that the "trustees" are in breach of trust, or similar?

  3. hi O.B.... thanks for this EXCELLENT post. I must admit that I had missed this latest development, so I am extemely grateful to you for getting the message out. Leanne Iskander is a wonderful and brave young woman. These theocratic bigots are disgusting, and enough is enough...