What does the National Organization For Marriage’s partner in Minnesota, the Minnesota Family Council, suggest bullied LGBT students do to combat their situation? Well, MFC leader Chuck Darrell thinks the vulnerable kids should just march right into that school and tell the bullies to stop making their lives and a living, lunch money-deprived hell:
You know, because that’s how it usually works. It’s not that the kid is picked on because he or she is smaller or different or in some way more susceptible. No, no — it’s because the victim simply hasn’t stood up enough. That was totally your experience in the American school system, right? [::eye roll, head shake, murmuring of word that starts like 'bully' but ends in 'it'::]
Convenient logic, Mr. Darrell. But here’s what we think: We think that LGBT students would literally, tangibly, demonstrably experience a change in their tormented, “kick me”-d state if groups like MFC and NOM would stop launching television campaigns against gay people’s simple right to love and would instead start focusing on how grown adults can instead steward a civil realm where all citizens are equally protected. Kids internalize these messages. Even younger children who may not be savvy enough to understand political complexities hear the messaging, either directly or from the parents or family members or acquaintances who have adopted it. And it’s completely obvious and sadly understandable how and why some who hear such hostility proceed to interpret it as a pass. A pass to write off certain people as different or abnormal. A pass to tease these people as if they are animals in a zoo. A pass to taunt kids who are perceived to fit a certain mold. A pass to vote, if not yet with a ballot then with a mean-spirited prank instead.
So you want the bullied LGBT kids of Minnesota to drive over to a responsible party’s house and confront a root of the antipathy? Well then: What’s MFC’s address again?
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