Minnesota Mean (or: It Doesn’t Get Better If You Let It Stay Bad)

July 29th, 2011

A follow up to It Gets Better, inspired by The Teen Suicide Epidemic in Michele Bachmann’s District (Mother Jones 7/25/11) and School Halls of Shame Face-off: Don’t Say Gay vs. No Homo Promo (Unicorn Booty 7/28/11), and in memory of  TJ, Aaron, Nick, Kevin, July, Justin, Cole, Jordan, and Samantha.

 

“In our public schools, whether they want to or not, they’ll be forced to start teaching that same-sex marriage is equal, that it is normal and that children should try it.” – then State Legislator Michele Bachmann during her 2004 campaign to amend the state constitution to forbid gay marriage
 
“The state-run media is going after the schools for resisting the homosexual indoctrination. The homosexuals are now blaming—they are playing the victims—the homosexuals are now blaming [the schools’] stance as the reason that young homosexuals are committing suicide because of the schools’ intolerance to the lifestyle of homosexuality.” – “Christian” rocker, Minnesotaradio jock, and Bachmann buddy Bradlee Dean (he and others believe the suicides are being caused by “homosexual indoctrination,” not anti-gay bullying)
 
“I think for all us our experience in public schools is there have always been bullies, always have been, always will be. I just don’t know how we’re ever going to get to point of zero tolerance and what does it mean?…What will be our definition of bullying? Will it get to the point where we are completely stifling free speech and expression? Will it mean that what form of behavior will there be—will we be expecting boys to be girls?” – Bachmann at a 2006 hearing expressing her opposition to anti-bulling legislation
 
“Teaching about sexual orientation is not a part of the District adopted curriculum; rather, such matters are best addressed within individual family homes, churches, or community organizations. Anoka-Hennepin staff, in the course of their professional duties, shall remain neutral on matters regarding sexual orientation including but not limited to student led discussions.” — Anoka-Hennepin School District Sexual Orientation Curriculum Policy
 
  “I wish we had never moved here. I feel if I hadn’t moved to this district my daughter wouldn’t have died.” — Michele Johnson, whose daughter Samantha committed suicide after being bullied by classmates who thought she was a lesbian

 

In the Anoka-Hennepin School District, which Michele Bachmann serves,

It’s considered very important, children’s straightness to preserve.

 

They’ve got a local law designed to keep gays from “recruiting”

And their born-straight kids with gay feelings from polluting.

 

It’s colloquially called the “no homo promo” law,

And it’s existence rubs many teachers, parents, and students raw.

 

School employees aren’t allowed to say or do anything (and I quote)

The view that that homosexuality is a “normal, valid lifestyle” to promote.

 

Teachers and counselors can be fired if they something supportive say

To a kid who’s being bullied because he’s gay.

 

(Ironic that teachers and counselors are forced to wear gags

While we protect the “free speech” of those who say God hates fags.)

 

Why? Because parents fear gay activists their kids will seduce.

(Homosexuals have to recruit since they can’t reproduce.)

 

Parents fear their children are particularly ripe targets

Because the gay agenda purportedly teens and tweens targets.

 

As a result of these pseudo-scientific fears,

Nine kids in the school district committed suicide in the last two years.

 

At least four were bullied because they were known or thought to be gay,

And by their own hand the ultimate penalty did pay.

 

Many others tried (thankfully without success)

Because the school refused anti-gay bullying to address.

 

In order to be with the no-homo-promo law in compliance,

The school board blocked creation of a Gay-Straight Alliance.

 

Religious rightist groups have opposed anti-bullying laws.

(“There have always been bullies,” Michele Bachmann said to thunderous applause.)

 

Since the rash of suicides, Bachmann has remained silent,

While anti-gay bullies have become increasingly violent.

 

SLPC is suing the school district on behalf of five LGBT kids

To get students the support which the school district forbids.

 

One plaintiff dropped out of school and attempted suicide

(He was very lucky not to have died).

 

Another was told by the principal to switch schools

Because they couldn’t protect him (so much for zero tolerance rules).

 

A third student was violently assaulted in the hall

While a teacher stood by and did nothing at all.

 

A fourth got stabbed with a pencil in the throat

Because the school doesn’t let gays their “lifestyle” promote.

 

(I guess the fifth kid is still OK,

At least physically, anyway.)

 

Minnesotahas declared Bachmann’s district a suicide contagion area.

Could that have anything to do with anti-gay hysteria?

 

The school district is also being investigated by DOJ and  the Department of Education Office for Civil Rights

To determine if school district policy anti-gay bullying invites.

 

After the suicides, students held a Day of Silence

In an attempt to promote increased tolerance.

 

Focus on the Family organized a “Day of Truth” for the prior day

To preempt what the gays and their supporters had to say.

 

Christian youth were armed with a propaganda brochure

And sent forth to preach being gay is a sin, and God the sole cure.

 

He was going to hell, Justin Aaberg was told by one such pamphleteer.

15-year-old Justin hung himself later that year.

 

So yes, Michele, words and policies matter,

And by the way: Justin went to your high school alma mater,

 

I hope you’ll say you were wrong and apologize

Before yet another hometown teen dies.

***

Here’s The Last Word’s 7/27/11 report on the epidemic of teen suicides due to anti-gay bullying in Michele Bachmann’s district. Joel, you’re still the man.

Click here and go to the bottom of the page for one of many anti-gay screeds by “Christian” rocker, Minnesota radio jock, and Bachmann buddy Bradlee Dean (here are two articles with more information about him). Dean has in the past advocated that gays be executed, though he’s since backed away from that position.

Sign this petition to the Minnesota State Senate to take action to stop bullying. If you or someone you know is considering suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or the Trevor Project Lifeline for LGBT youth at 1-866-488-7386. And remember, it does get better.

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