Jesus ‘n’ Mo ‘n’ gayness

May 29, 2019 • 10:30 am

Today’s Jesus and Mo strip, called “eight”, came with an email note:

The controversy over the Birmingham schools teaching the No Outsiders lessons continues.

The “controversy” was described in an earlier Jesus and Mo post.  In short, an organization called No Outsiders proposes to teach LGBTA equality in Birmingham public schools, which some Muslim parents perceive as undermining their religion’s dictates against homosexuality. As I wrote at the time about one protestor, Amir Ahmed:

“Fundamentally [Ahmed said] the issue we have with No Outsiders is that it is changing our children’s moral position on family values on sexuality and we are a traditional community.

“Morally we do not accept homosexuality as a valid sexual relationship to have. It’s not about being homophobic… that’s like saying, if you don’t believe in Islam, you’re Islamophobic.”

No, Ahmed’s analogy doesn’t hold. You are “Islamophobic” not if you reject Islam, but if you are bigoted against Muslims. And if you are bigoted against homosexuals, and deny them liberty and rights, as many Muslim countries do, then you are homophobic.

And so Jesus points out the hypocrisy of “stealing children’s innocence” with No Outsiders at the same time that you’ve already stolen children’s innocence by veiling little girls.

This post will, of course, have to be banned in Pakistan.

12 thoughts on “Jesus ‘n’ Mo ‘n’ gayness

    1. I don’t think so. It’s perfectly consistent to say “I don’t want my daughter at her age to be taught certain details about sex” and also “I don’t want her to be exposed to the possibly lustful gaze of unknown men in public”.

      1. That would work as long as your daughter was slow enough not to notice her environment and wonder “Why am I wearing this shroud?”.

  1. Much as I enjoy pointing out the bigotry of religious groups there have been serious concerns raised about Andrew Moffat’s relationship with the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), for which Moffat co-authored the paper ‘Bodies and minds: essentialism, activism and strategic disruptions in the primary school’ which he presented at a seminar entitled ‘Queering the Body; Queering Primary Education.’

    In this he proposed breaking down the barriers between teachers and children’s sexuality, and asked ‘At what cost do we deny children’s and teacher’s sexuality? What do we lose if desire and pleasure are banned from the classroom? What is the place of the research team members’ own bodies, desires and pleasures in this research?’

    Concerns haven’t just been raised by religious nutters, but also by feminists. Teaching tolerance is one thing, but there are good reasons why we don’t let teachers bring their desires into the classroom. The teaching material isn’t just teaching about homosexuality, it is teaching Queer Theory, and part of the mission is about challenging the ‘dichotomy’ between ‘childhood innocence’ and adult sexuality.

    1. There’s more information on Queering the classroom in this paper by Moffat’s co-author Elizabeth Atkinson:

      From the abstract,

      The present paper interrogates the ways in which school is produced as a particular bounded place (or collection of places) where sexuality, and particularly non‐heterosexuality, is carefully policed by these boundaries. Drawing upon data generated in primary schools during a nationwide action research project (‘No Outsiders’), we focus on three very different school places: the classroom, the staffroom and a school‐based after‐school art club. Our analysis engages with the contingency of place‐making to show that place is neither a unitary experience nor a neutral stage upon which social relations are enacted. The three vignettes analysed offer insights into the critical potential of consciously and persistently working across (apparently) boundaried spaces within and beyond schools.

    2. As parents, we need to be pretty vigilant these days.
      Not so much against basic facts and knowledge, but against people who want to teach their agendas to our kids. And all sorts of people have bizarre agendas. I think it would be foolish to just assume that any new curriculum or school program has been designed by reasonable people for the betterment of our kids and society.
      Look at the sexuality that was being taught in DDR in the 70s. That was all in the service of disruption of the traditional family in order to break up bourgeois society’s control of sexuality.
      All you have to do is substitute “patriarchy” for some of the tired Marxist terms that were popular then, and you have language being used commonly today.
      I won’t link it here, but if you have the stomach for it, look up “Kursbuch 17”, to see where agenda-driven sex education can potentially lead.

      1. Yeah, I think a lot of people just see “sex ed” or “tolerance” vs. “religious protesters” and automatically assume the former side must be the right one. But you’re right. There are so many agendas these days that it’s not always about what people — or even the media — says it’s about.

        1. It wouldn’t surprise me if Moffat, etc. targeted this school specifically because any criticism would be dismissed as religious intolerance (which certainly plays a part). But the curriculum includes a book for six year olds in which a boy discovers he is really a girl because he likes to dress up as a princess. Queer theory is not progressive; it is about promoting gender stereotypes while breaking down barriers between adults and children that are there for a reason.

          It’s dangerous nonsense when it is taught to teenagers in elite colleges; we’d be particularly concerned if sexual boundaries between students and tutors were being challenged on campus.

          It’s far more dangerous when targeted at primary schools.

          1. Yeah, this stuff really scares the shit out of me, in large part because I feel like it’s inevitable that it will eventually infect younger and younger forms of education.

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