By Hilary White
LONDON, July 5, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Britain’s minister for Children, Schools and Families told gay activists yesterday that the Labour government is committed to working closely with the homosexual activist organization Stonewall in eradicating “homophobic bullying” in schools. He told activists that new government guidelines are planned that will “compel” faith schools to comply with the homosexual movement’s agenda to normalize homosexuality and outlaw opposition.
At the same time, Stonewall has produced a survey claiming that religious schools are responsible for 65 per cent of “homophobic bullying”. Stonewall is Britain’s most successful homosexual political lobby group and was largely responsible for the imposition earlier this year of the Sexual Orientation Regulations, opposed by most religious groups in the country as a case of anti-Christian political manoeuvring.
Speaking at an activist conference, Education for All, sponsored by Stonewall, Education Minister Kevin Brennan stressed that faith schools will be compelled to “take action against homophobia”.
Brennan told PinkNews.co.uk, “The guidance is strong; it has got the full force of the government behind it. We are committed to making sure that every school implements the guidance… We will be monitoring its implementation.”
Others say, however, that there is a larger agenda at work, with government working closely with homosexual activists and the National Secular Society to increase and tighten government controls over schools and, ultimately, private family life.
Fr. Tim Finigan, a parish priest in London and the founder of the Association of Priests for the Gospel of Life, told LifeSiteNews.com that since the passage earlier this year of the Sexual Orientation Regulations, it was clear that an increasingly aggressive secularist government will be moving on religious schools under the pretext of eradicating “homophobia.”
A Department of Education and Skills document “Challenging Homophobia in Schools” defines homophobia as including “the presumption that everyone is heterosexual.”
“It refers to a culture in which individuals, families and their lifestyles are categorised according to a heterosexual model. Examples include the assumption that a male pupil will have, or be looking for, a girlfriend; or that a female parent, when talking about her partner, is referring to a male.”
Fr. Finigan said, “When we saw Tony Blair attending Stonewall banquets, we knew that the group has considerable influence with the government. It is clear that they and the National Secular Society are calling the shots here. They make no secret that they hate our schools.”
In March this year the National Secular Society produced an article calling on the government to confiscate the Catholic schools. It quoted George Broadhead, secretary of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association saying, “Such is the level of homophobia in the Catholic Church that its schools should be taken from it and returned to the community sector.”
Fr. Finigan warned that this was not the end of the program. “They have tagged the gay issue onto the established anti-bullying campaigns. The next thing obviously is going to be to go after home schooling families to be sure children are being given proper non-heterosexist education at home. It’s all part of the state control of schools.”
The government’s pledge to focus on “homophobia” issues has frustrated others who work to protect children as well. Gregory Carlin, a campaigner for child protection and against child prostitution and pornography based in Ireland said that while many children “dread going to school” because of bullying, such emphasis on the homosexual issue ignores a real problem.
“I think that human rights in our schools might be better protected if violent thuggery was viewed as a crime. Criminal issues should take precedence over whether or not a bicycle or a pair of shoes is described as ‘gay’.”
Read related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:
UK: Religious Schools May Not Teach Christian Sexual Morals “As if They Were Objectively True”