For those of you familiar with the California's FAIR Education Act (SB48), it is the latest target for many Christian groups who believe that homosexuality is a sin. Motivations are far more complex than that, but for me to try and capture what my brothers and sisters in Christ on that side of the aisle believe would be unfair. Suffice it to say, they are none too happy about this recently signed into law legislation and there is a well-organized effort underway to place a referendum on the ballot that would repeal the law.
In a nutshell...
The Fair, Accurate, Inclusive and Respectful (FAIR) Education Act would amend the Education Code to include social sciences instruction on the contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. This bill would also prohibit discriminatory instruction and discriminatory materials from being adopted by the State Board of Education. (PDF Fact Sheet)
Obviously, there are going to be many interpretations of this new law and the usual suspects -- yours truly included -- will line up along our normal lines and ramp up our PR machines. Consider this post as my stepping up to the line in defense and gratitude for the FAIR Education Act on behalf of my children and other people of faith who feel as I do about homosexuality.
I think it's GREAT that my children will be offered a broader glimpse into the history of the world around them and that the pioneers and prophets who happened to be LGBT will be part of the richer story of the world that is told. So much is already missing from our teaching of history that any attempt to provide a wider exposure to and understanding of events is welcomed by this parent. I also want to again affirm that, as a Christian, I simply reject the idea that homosexuality is a sin. We are not going to be able to solve the struggle some folks have with understanding the context and interpretation of scripture both verse by verse and in its entirety, but I want to be sure that the voice of faith in this ongoing struggle is not surrendered to those who would condemn my LGBT brothers and sisters.
Part of my calling in life and ministry is as a board member for California Faith for Equality, an organization that works with communities of faith who support and affirm the LGBT community. By engaging in training, advocacy and organizing around issues of marriage, bullying, education, etc., we boldly claim that faith traditions who would work against LGBT rights do not speak for all people of faith. It has been a privilege to serve as part of this group.
In response to recent efforts to repeal the FAIR Education Act, we have put together a quick video for people to watch and share. There is going be anti-FAIR messaging that exploits people's fear about sexual indoctrination, fiscal contraints and parental rights, so please share this alternative voice with those who might have heard about the repeal movement and need more info.
Please share this as you feel called!
HUGE THANKS to Rev. Monte McLain, Presbyterian Church (USA) pastor, for speaking some powerful words; Photon Creative for providing production equipment; Adler & Co Gallery for opening up their space for filming and finally, the production crew: Husband and wife team, Dessiree and Brandon McFarland, Tyler Davis and Dakota Wilder. You all rock.
Please feel free to comment on the original post on Patheos.
Follow Bruce Reyes-Chow on Twitter: www.twitter.com/breyeschow