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National Organization for [Heterosexism that goes well beyond Marriage]

by Jeremy Hooper

To scare New Jersey residents into going against marriage equality, NOM president Brian Brown is resorting to the familiar "marriage = school indoctrination" lines. But this one comes with an extra level of insult. Take a look:

Brown noted that in other states that have legalized gay marriage children as young as second grade have been taught it in public school. This has already occurred in Massachusetts, New York and California.

"Legislators need to know that a vote for same-sex marriage is a vote to have it taught to kids in public schools, including to seven and eight year old children," Brown said. "This is not a ‘feel good' vote for political correctness; it will have profound consequences on families and especially children in New Jersey. It has happened in Massachusetts and right across the river in New York, and that is what legislators are being asked to support in New Jersey."

Okay, so the obvious insult: The idea that gays and their benign existences are a corruptive force that, in this troubled world of ours, is posing some real danger to children. I happen to be part of a NY/NJ family filled with little ones who know and love myself, my husband, and various other LGBT relatives. I've about had it with carpetbagging groups like NOM coming into states and telling locals what their kids need to hear. MIND YOUR OWN CHILDREN, NOM!

But the extra level of insult to which I referred? That would be the California mention. Because remember, California does not have marriage equality. In fact, NOM was instrumental in ripping marriage equality from that state. So how dare they use the Golden State as some sort of bellwether for how marriage equality changes public schools?! Hell, California doesn't even have civil unions like New Jersey. The state only has domestic partnerships. One of the strongest domestic partnership systems in the nation, mind you -- but still only DPs.

By using California in this way, NOM is only highlighting how disconnected the issues of marriage and inclusive education truly are. Public schools move towards inclusive education because LGBT people exist, not necessarily because marriage equality exists. Sure, ultimately we equality activists want both. However, marriage is not the requirement upon which basic acceptance hinges! California's push towards inclusive schools even with the nasty post-Prop-8 reality that NOM foisted upon the state proves what I am saying. It also proves that NOM as an organization has LGBT-excluding views/goals that extend beyond their stated fight.

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