Some people claim that they’re in search of truth. Others don’t even bother to make the claim. All too often, the impetus and the result are the same. Most folks don’t want the truth. As Jack Nicholson said, “You can’t handle the truth.” What they really want, is for their opinions to be validated and for others to agree with them and make them feel good. Even when the truth is presented to them, they keep denying it and pushing it away, because, that’s not what they want to see.
At my daughter’s housing complex, they’ve had some incidents occur which led the board to decide to install electronic security cameras, around the office area. One of the cameras was to be trained on the children’s playground, right beside the office. Most reasonable people would agree that, protection of the kids would be a good idea. A secondary reason for that camera was that, one of the male teens from the complex, and two or three of his non-resident friends are thought to be climbing over the playground fence, and dropping out of sight into the tiny yard behind the office. They’re probably smoking dope, and the camera can’t see them, but would provide evidence if a fire started, or damage was done.
A female living across the driveway high-jacked a board meeting last week. She found out that the cameras were going up and started ranting about spying on the children and looking in her windows. She went around to many of the residents and told them that they must attend the important meeting. She just didn’t tell them what it was all about. When most of them found out what the issue was, they shrugged and left. One woman, who she thought would support her, stated that she felt the security was a good idea, especially for the kids. That led to a loud, nasty confrontation. Even when she was told that the cameras would only be turned on from 6 P.M. to 6 A.M. and was offered to view the feed from the “offending” camera, she refused the offer, and continued her rant. Purely coincidentally, the next day, the camera was damaged, when it wasn’t turned on.
In a minor grandstanding play, to seem as if he’s doing something when he’s really not, the Premier of Ontario instructed the Minister of Education, to order the individual boards of education, to facilitate the formation of gay/straight alliance groups in all high-schools. The bullying of gays is a serious subject, but it is not the only aspect of school bullying, nor, perhaps, is it the most important facet of the problem. It is, however, the one the Premier wants to champion.
The public school boards quietly, efficiently, obediently went along with the directive. They know which way the wind is blowing, and when the photo-ops arrive, they want to be seen to be on the side of goodness and right. The Catholic school boards, however, have been more of a problem. Some of them are reluctantly willing to have the groups formed. It’s just that they can’t have a name which includes the word gay. They can have a mix of straights and gays. They just can’t say they have gays in them.
The local Catholic board has still not got around to authorizing formation, largely due to one particular male board member. He was interviewed by a reporter for the local paper to give his reasons for the foot-dragging. His response was, that if these groups were allowed to form, they would just devolve into giant gay sex orgies. That’s right, groups that would prevent bullying by ignorant, prejudiced individuals, are prevented from forming by an ignorant, prejudiced individual in a position of power. It seems that someone might have pointed out his baseless, paranoid position, because the next sentence in his quote was, “Even if they don’t, there’ll be talk about perverted stuff, like anal and oral sex, and I don’t want my kids hearing about that kind of thing.” Fine, then tell your kids not to join the groups that others wish to form.
The Catholic Church vs. Girl Scouts. Over the past several years, there has been friction between the Church and tween girls. The Church has, on several occasions, claimed that the organization supports birth control and abortion. These charges have been vigorously denied. Despite being shown that these charges are false, in several dioceses and instances, representatives of the Catholic Church continue to fling the same old mud. Recently a Bishop in Indiana has called for denunciation of the group under the same baseless charges. The attacks themselves are difficult enough to fend off and maintain dignity. The membership of Girl Scouts has declined from 3.3 million, to 2.6 million young girls in America.
Many Girl Scout troops are currently using rooms in Catholic churches for meeting halls. If The Church divorces them, (Oops! Can’t say divorce and Catholic Church in the same sentence!) they will have to try to find alternative meeting places. Also, a million of the girls left in troops are Catholic. They will be forced to decide whether to leave their religion, or their uplifting group of friends. I know which one I would choose, but then, I’m an old and greatly experienced curmudgeon.
It is sad that people like these, choose to practice and enforce their mindless dogma, rather than deal with imperfect, undesirable facts. There’s an adage that, “If your cat has kittens in the barn, you can call them horses. Just don’t try to ride them.” These folks already have out the boots, spurs, Stetsons and lassoes, but it’s us they’re riding. It’s time for us to tell them to get off our backs.