News flash: That’s apparently not a family in NJ

Hot off the presses from Dana at Mombian: School Board Upholds Ban on Film Depicting Same-Sex Families. (I posted an All Points Bulletin about this broo-haha over the prizewinning documentary That’s A Family way back in February.)

In a first-person account of the school board meeting by Steven Goldstein, Garden State Equality’s chair, we learn that this is far from the end of the saga.

Our plan, which indeed we’re moving forward with, is:

1. Likely litigation, based on a violation of the state’s Law Against Discrimination, among other grounds
2. The formation of a local organization, United Families of Evesham, to go block by block to educate parents about the film and to work to increase tolerance of all groups of people
3. An Open Public Records Act request, which our friends at the ACLU of New Jersey filed on Thursday. We want to see the behind the scenes deliberations of this tortured vote.

The school board voted to overturn the recommendation of the very committe they appointed (professional educators, social workers, etc.) quite openly because a sizeable minority of homophobic local parents got the better of them:

Read moreNews flash: That’s apparently not a family in NJ

Lose some, winsome

“Let’s play ‘Family,'” says the lil’ monkey this afternoon. How can I say no? Also, how can I not use it as yet another opportunity to massage the concept, yet again? In situ? Under the guise of her initiative?

“When you play ‘Family,’ who is it that’s in the family?” I ask as coyly as I can manage.

“There’s two baby brothers, and two baby sisters.”

“Yes,” I say, “go on.”

“And a Mommy, and a Daddy.”

“So not two Mommies, or two Daddies, or a Mama and a Baba?”

“No, a Mommy and a Daddy.” She’s cheery, and of sound conviction.

I try to investigate just a weeee bit more. Without flooding the room with the stench of didacticism. Nothing spooks an unwitting brainwashing subject more than catching a flash of the propaganda in broad daylight.

“Why do you want there to be a Mommy and a Daddy?” I ask, with as cheery a tone as she’s had all along. Since I actually am cheery. And doing a good job of stuffing the worry down deep in my shorts pockets.

“Cause there are lots of people with Mommies and Daddies. Most people have Mommies and Daddies.” Can’t argue with that, especially when that’s what we’ve been telling her all along. Our line is, most people have a Mommy and a Daddy (we provide illustration from the copious supply of aunts and uncles around her). Some people have two Mommies or two Daddies (again, illustrations from friends she knows). And some people have a Mama and a Baba (e.g., her best chum across the street). From time to time, further elucidation is provided on what a Baba is, technically speaking: a kind of a parent part way between a Mama and a Papa. If you had to say it was more one thing or another, you’d go wtih a Baba being a kind of a Mama.

Read moreLose some, winsome

Dispatches two years out: leaving and coming home.

Photo by David Rae Morris, part of his gallery “Mr.G. and the Rev.”
Posted on the Lagniappe page at his site.

• The beloved heard this commentary, “Dear New Orleans: I’m Leaving You,” by Eve Troeh on NPR the other day. Eve said,

Now I’m a jilted lover of the city. I’m angry and confused. Which is the real New Orleans? The one that’s violent and desperate? Or the one that coos softly, and caresses me? The answer, of course, is both.

Read moreDispatches two years out: leaving and coming home.