Although most of my readers already know this I feel it necessary to state this for the record, the freedom of speech is dead. The freedom of speech has been under attack in this country for a very long time, going back at least as early as the Alien and Sedition Acts. Still the fact that somebody can be punished simply for having an unpopular belief is a bit disconcerting:
An honors student in Fort Worth, Texas, was sent to the principal’s office and punished for telling a classmate that he believes homosexuality is wrong.
Dakota was in a German class at the high school when the conversation shifted to religion and homosexuality in Germany. At some point during the conversation, he turned to a friend and said that he was a Christian and “being a homosexual is wrong.”
“It wasn’t directed to anyone except my friend who was sitting behind me,” Dakota told Fox. “I guess [the teacher] heard me. He started yelling. He told me he was going to write me an infraction and send me to the office.”
Dakota was sentenced to one day in-school suspension – and two days of full suspension. His mother was flabbergasted, noting that her son had a spotless record, was an honor student, volunteered at his church and played on the school football team.
I’m sure somebody will say I’m anti-gay for writing this article but if you do a little browsing on this blog you’ll know that’s not true. It is my personal belief that all people should enjoy equal rights regardless of your race, religion, or sexual orientation. I also believe everybody has the right to their opinion and should be allowed to express it without fear of punishment. Vengeance shouldn’t be brought against somebody simply because they’re racist, bigoted, etc. While I reserve the right to call such people idiots they reserve the right to call me one and so long as nobody initiates violence it’s all good.
The fact that this kid was given three days of suspension is disgusting. What kind of message do you think that sends the kid? If the teacher was disgusted by the child’s belief maybe he should have had a discussion about it with the kid or the entire class. Punishing somebody for disagreeing with you only generates resentment and will likely strengthen their belief. Reason is the most effective tool for promoting logical ideas. Had the teacher used reasoning to express why he believed the child’s belief to be wrong perhaps he could have helped the kid understand that homosexuality isn’t wrong as it harms nobody.
Instead the teacher went all authoritarian on the child and likely generated resentment which will strengthen the child’s belief that homosexuality is wrong.