Same-Sex Marriage: The Maine Event

The Nov. 3rd Maine referendum to repeal same-sex marriage drove home a shortcoming of majority-rule democracy, that the majority cannot be counted on to uphold the rights of the minority. However,¬†the Civil Rights Era model for change presents its own problems. In the 1950s and ’60s, direct action was used to dramatize injustices and to rouse the consciences of potential White allies in power. Morality was imposed legally from above, not voted upon by a White majority. Relying on a sympathetic cultural elite to set the rules is problematic. It only seems palatable when we happen to agree with the ruling class’s sense of morality.

Neither approach is wholly satisfying. The first is oppressive by nature and the second is anti-democratic. I think that same-sex marriage is a generational issue that will resolve itself as the young and less judgmental come into their own. This can’t be left to chance, since cultural attitudes are passed down, for good or ill. Teachers should find new and engaging ways to teach tolerance and acceptance. Especially important are lessons on different kinds of families. I have found that no matter the biases of the adults in the community, 2nd graders will not bat an eyelash when you talk about same-sex parent families. Children are naturally open and accepting. As the song from South Pacific goes, “You have to be taught to hate.”

So, this really is a culture war. There is no such thing as neutrality if you have any influence over children. To be neutral is akin to staying home on election day and letting fearful people vote away civil rights.

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4 Responses to Same-Sex Marriage: The Maine Event

  1. If there was a like button I would click it. Is anyone truly free? For every action there is a reaction whether it be good or bad. Sometimes a good reaction creates a bad response. Sometimes a bad reaction creates a good response. It all depends on what a society thinks is good or bad. So many variables to the equation I can’t name them all. College algebra is taught to all professionals to teach critical thinking skills to find ways to solve problems quickly if you become good at it and yet most definitely will if you apply yourself to the process of learning it. Most often that just means listening to what the teacher has to say. Children listen when you think they are not. My son in kindergarten could come home from school and repeat a book the teacher read word by word. While the teacher kept telling me my son does not pay attention in class. But yet he knew every word that came out of her mouth. I realized my son did not have an attention deficit disorder. He had an extremely brilliant fast mind. So i taught him his kindergarten words by flipping flash cards in front of him very quickly. Bingo he new every word that fast in just one flip through. Well today he is 12 in 6th grade and scores 100 on every tacks test in texas thus far. He is still seen by some of his teachers as unobservent. I admire his learning capabilities. He truly learns the stuff too and builds upon it. Second grade he learned the preamble. He can still quote it word by word 4 years later. My point being my son is looked upon as deviant behaviorous learning but it works for him so why can’t he learn how he learns?

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  2. anyways that’s the kind of discriminatory things that happen to my son and I don’t think he even realizes it. Same sex was like years ago. civil rights meaning to him is fairness to everyone period. Being civil to every human being, animal, and planet. Civilized. Talk out your feelings don’t shoot somebody. War is the most uncivilized thing imaginable. Son just did model of Berlin Wall. He got the point that taking away freedoms to do what you want leads to unhappiness and eventually walls come down. A lot of tears happened along the way. So why we still have the freedom to be happy in this country. I think it says somewhere “the pursuit of happiness” I say laugh play make jokes sing. What is the true meaning of civil?

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  3. […] Same-Sex Marriage: The Maine¬†Event […]

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