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UPDATED LGBT thrilla in City Hazilla

Submitted by on 1, May 12, 2009 – 5:26 pm5 Comments

Devil at City HallUpdated 6:46 p.m.

Wondering how the public hearing on Alameda Unified’s proposed LGBT lessons is going to go down?

Well … You know how they say a picture is worth a thousand words? (This is a web publication, after all.)

We’ve got no fewer than two Sacramento-based group (one pro, one anti) urging folks to turn out, and they’re here, as part of an overflow crowd, TV trucks in tow. PD just cleared out half the crowd and the fire chief is on his way.

School board president Mike McMahon just announced that the board is working to set up another hearing on this for Monday in a middle school gym TBD.

More to come …


  • AD says:

    Michele, you are the tops–live blogging from city hall–keep it up!

    Both groups should have been banned from coming here. How many seats inside are taken by out-of-towners, while the parents sit in the overflow room? Another meeting at the middle school was a good call but they better require some kind of Alameda ID to get in.

  • Catie says:

    As an Alameda parent I agree whole-heartedly with AD. I got to city Hall at 5:40, so I got a seat, but had to go 'cause my little guy's bedtime and I had him in tow. There was an insane number of people there, some were from Alameda High (way to go guys!) and many people from Alameda. That being said there was a guy that was giving directions on how to get to the island from 80 on his cell phone, so less than likely he had a kid in Alameda schools.

    As an LGBT parent, I again feel my family is under attack. First the passage of Prop 8, then the possibility that my wife and I may have our marriage invalidated, now this. Do people think that my family is just going to go away if we are ignored? My son's classmates will learn that he has two moms from our involvement in his classroom, birthday parties and little league. We are here, and we are part of Alameda. For those against the lessons, that want your children to "opt out", are you going to not let them play on the same baseball team as my son? maybe ask to move your children to a different classroom so they won't ever find out that Sam has TWO MOMMIES? Gimme a break and join the real world.

    I reality having a mother and a father is not the only family structure, and to not teach that some kids are raised in different family structures is short changing all of the children.

  • Janet says:

    While I'm not a LGBT parent, I support whole-heartedly with AD and Catie. The school district should have LGBT curriculum and so teachers have the right tool to address the diversity of our community. As a parent myself, I want my child to appreciate all the differences in life. And yes, this is the real world, and we need our children to learn about it, and to accept it the way it is without any judging.

  • Ron says:

    Regarding restricting attendance. In California the Brown Act covers attendance and public speaking to public bodies (or boards.) The site brownact.org which purports to have the entire Brown Act posted.

    Section 549543.3 refers to the right of the public to address a governmental board on any matter within the board's jurisdiction. I do not see anything that allows a board to only allow a member of the public just from the jurisdiction (I.e. City of Alameda) to comment. My training also told me except for reasonable time limits and procedures, the right of anyone to address a board is broad and guaranteed by the act.

    If someone finds something else that explicitly allows boards to exclude those out side of our jurisdiction (Alameda) pass it on!

    The overwhelming majority of the people who spoke last night claimed to be Alamedans, btw.

  • AD says:

    I wish to make clear that while I’m appalled by the turnout of the anti-gay groups from Sacramento and their meddling in our affairs (and equally by any pro-gay outside influences or threats to sue if this doesn’t pass), I am NOT in favor of the curriculum as it now stands. I think that it only deals with one single issue, while claiming to address a much more complex one, bullying. Bullying—a problem of big concern to me—only came up occasionally last night! It was all about, do we acknowledge gay families or not. Of course we do, or I do, anyway. I am in favor of including the full spectrum of families in all teaching materials from K on up—as pictures, stories and situations. I am NOT in favor of specifically teaching words that reference sexual preferences to not even pre-pubescent children, and directing children to use them and think about them before they should be ready. I really don’t care if some of them already are thinking about “romantic” relationships; it is not the schools job to promote this interest early. Family diversity can be taught perfectly well using age appropriate material. The key is age-appropriate. People surely disagree what that is. I only know what that means for my child and my family. We do not encourage discussion of “romantic” relationships even with my teenage kids. We discuss them gladly if THEY bring them up. We encourage interests in places and people, developing skills and interests, games, college, politics etc. We do not ask our 8-year-old who he’ll marry when he grows up. I know some people do, and I find that incredibly stupid. This is the very last thing I would expect an 8-, or even 15-year-old to be considering. We express our tolerance towards different people when we encounter them. We don’t sit our children at the table and talk about the different people out there. We just try to treat everyone the same. I expect this of our schools. I expect the ADULTS at the school to be tolerant, and skilled at handling conflict. I do not expect proactive, pro-one special group lessons in order to even out the world. I know it’s so easy to do just that. Just force it in, because you are so tired of the injustice! I know it’s been done, and some believe that’s the only way it works. I don’t. I already feel violated, unheard, disrespected. I already feel that I will not respect the school institution for doing this. I want everybody to be accepted. I just want the change to happen more gently, more carefully, for better, permanent results. I want to believe that our school board and administrators can be thoughtful and deliberate, not reactive and afraid.

    I was literally turned off last night by the people with signs in front, and I left. I felt the issue was hi-jacked in the worst possible manner. But I also felt betrayed by the speakers inside, when I watched them on TV! The point of view that we want to an inclusive curriculum only in a less agressive manner never got a chance. I’m still hoping it will on Monday the 18th. And I hope, again, all outside warriors are banned from coming in. We are already fighting this battle through our children, unfortunately, we don’t need political and religious groups fighting it through us concerned parents.

    Is this a point of view someone can accept?

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