The Parkers and another family took their case to court and were denied the ability to opt their children out of those discussions. In fact, case opinion stated the Parkers could seek remedy either educating their children at home or by sending their children to private institutions. For many parents, these are not viable options. Given that parents aren't afforded a voucher in order to choose their institution of learning, curriculum shopping isn't viable either.
Information also emerged regarding Kevin Jennings, President Obama's Safe Schools Czar, that details his desire to expose children as young as kindergartners to the topic of sexual orientation. Reports are constantly emerging, like the California school that had kindergartners sign pledge cards regarding their treatment of homosexuals.
Parents in various states have expressed concern and outrage over teacher recommended reading materials that are provocative or inappropriate.
In a 2009 nationwide expose detailing some of the books recommended by Kevin Jennings and his organization GLSEN, Scott Baker noted, "Book after book after book contained stories and anecdotes that weren't merely X-rated and pornographic, but which featured explicit descriptions of sex acts between pre-schoolers; stories that seemed to promote and recommend child-adult sexual relationships; stories of public masturbation, anal sex in restrooms, affairs between students and teachers, five-year-olds playing sex games, semen flying through the air.
One memoir even praised becoming a prostitute as a way to increase one's self-esteem. Above all, the books seemed to have less to do with promoting tolerance than with an unabashed attempt to indoctrinate students into a hyper-sexualized worldview."
The argument by those desiring the discussion of these topics is based on their desire to encourage diversity and provide safe schools, i.e. prevent children from bullying other children. I agree that no child should be bullied. Personally, I find the Golden Rule, "do unto others as you would have done unto you," the perfect lesson for ALL differences among children. By specifically identifying sexual orientation, these adults are exposing young children to topics that many children may not be prepared to understand or educators may not be prepared to teach.
Because the prevailing movement seems to one eroding the rights, wishes and desires of the parents, I have sponsored this legislation as a preemptive move to ensure that those very weighty and complicated topics remain within the decision-making framework of the family, at least for grades K-8.
I don't think my constituents need to worry about their children being introduced to such sensitive material. We can teach the biology of the human body without a guide to sex acts.
The United States continues to fall behind in educational achievement. I wish I wouldn't have to even raise this topic, however, many special interest groups are encouraging the introduction of orientation, transgendered identification, and even experimentation and promiscuity, into school curriculum.
I have received complaints from several parents here in Tennessee regarding what they feel has been inappropriate educational material. I want parents and teachers to rest knowing that these topics are a distraction to the purpose of school and that they won't be raised in Tennessee.
By keeping these topics out of the official curriculum, we assure both those who promote homosexuality and those who oppose it, that one view won't be promoted over another.
This is important legislation and I hope it generates discussion. Most reasonable people can agree that such topics don't need to be introduced to young children. Education needs to trend away from social engineering and return to the basic three R's that delivered one of the greatest centuries of achievement mankind has ever witnessed.