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Tristram Hunt: Textbooks that teach homosexuality is a choice are ‘dangerous’ and ‘backward’

  • Ciaran

    So, the question is Tristram what is the possible next Labour government going to do about this?
    You Know Labour the party that supposed to support equality and LGBT reform?
    I`ve said it before and i`ll say it again, religion should have absolutely no place in our schools whatsoever, religion should be a personal matter not something that schools need to teach.
    I am also against Free Schools because as we `ve seen recently if state or local authority regulations on education are stripped away or watered down it allows room for people with radical views religious or not to fester.
    I don`t expect Gove and his team of right-wing backward ministers to do anything regarding this whatsoever quite frankly.

    • REALrenovato

      You mean the M Gove educated at Robert |Gordon private fee school in Aberdeen. In his desire to replicate his former educational institution in English publicly funded education in his adopted country he has thrown out the baby with the bath water forgetting that the ethos of such instutions were formed over many years and from a different underlying culture, this cannot be recreated by giving them “independance” from local education authorities and throwing public money at them or relaxing standards of basic values of education. In his rush to get things done before he gets chucked out of office at the next election he has neglected the basics of the rights of children to get a balanced and wide education teaching how we got to the values of scepticism (of politics, religion, overbearing tradition) and intolarance of intolerance and freedom of the individual and equality, structured in law and free from overzealous parents who want to produce a “mini-me”.
      He has not considered the implications of his actions and how those would or could be used to subvert the very thing he says he craves and has taken his eye off the ball in his haste. The damage has already been done in many young peoples lives.

    • Hunt is trumpeting these ideal only as pre-election grandstanding
      Come his time in Government (yeah, right) he will back off going up against the Muslims the same as every other politician

      • Jesus_Mohammed

        You have magic ball, Pariss? :-)

  • Mark Y

    These schools do not have any public money. They exist of donations (no doubt US evangelists) and £3,500 per year fees.

    This doesn’t mean government shouldn’t be able to do something. The government need to act and stop this bigoted hate being taught in UK schools to children – no matter how much public money they get.

    Would they allow private schools to teach other biblical ‘pearls of wisdom’ like foreigners can be turned into slaves or that adulterous Men and Women should be stoned to death? So why allow them to teach anti-homosexual propaganda?

    • Jean Ihenry

      In the US, many private Christian schools receive public money, mostly through the use of “vouchers” that parents can use to pay for private school tuition. In some states, there were politicians and other Christians who were aghast and apoplectic when they found that some Muslim parents were using these “vouchers” to pay for tuition in Muslim schools.

  • Truth

    OFSTED still has control over these schools, privately funded or not. The brainwashing of young minds with false information is disgraceful. Why hasn’t Michael Gove, the Education Secretary insisted that this rubbish be removed? Too busy arguing with the Home Secretary over the Birmingham schools extremist scandal, I suppose?

    • I think much of the problem about clamping down on lies being preached is to do with a complete fear of upsetting Muslims

  • Robert W. Pierce

    I’m all for adopting the French system. No religion classes in schools and for those who want it, they have to find somewhere after school hours. The way it should be.

    • David H

      100% with you there, Robert.

      • Leonard Woodrow

        Me too! If adults want to believe silly, ancient stories about “God”, they are quite welcome to do so, but young minds must not be indoctrinated with such nonsense.

    • Jones

      I believe religious studies should still be taught. However there is a difference between teaching a religion and teaching religions. It should also come from a non-bias perspective, like politics is taught, so that children can be free to choose faith or not by themselves.

      However I agree on the point that if you want your child to have a wholly religious education do it on your own terms not with our tax money.

      • David H

        I understand your point, but there are so many religions. How do you determine which to give study time to? I’m not religious, but I enjoy studying theology. I think any religious studies in schools should take an entirely agnostic stance, studying the psychology behind why some humans need to believe in deities and look at the wars caused by religion, but also the communities brought together by religion; looking at the common similarities and the morphing of old religions into newer ones – i.e. a completely outside looking-in perspective without becoming tied into the belief systems.

        That way if children are being indoctrinated outside a school environment, they have a legitimately balanced perspective to refer back to.

        • anon

          Those things are interesting, and I’m personally interested in ancient religions, e.g Greek, and Ancient Egyptian, but I don’t think religion needs curriculum time.

          I considered my RE lessons at school to be a pure waste of time.

          • David H

            A teacher friend once pointed out that the job of a school teacher is as much about undoing the poisonous influences from outside of schools as well as educating on facts.

            The danger of all of these religious fanatics, whether they be Christian, Muslim or just plain old bigots is that they will endeavour to position their viewpoint as the only true one.

            As such, it’s giving young children the neutral logic with which to identify a point of reality. For example, most children are familiar with the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, but they learn about bears in school and see them on TV, they very quickly determine the reality that bears don’t talk and sleep in beds. However, because they are taught that God is “fact” by churches, religious parents etc. the lack of contrasting argument in their life reduces their early ability to reach their own logical conclusion.

            Of course, they develop that later as many of us do (I questioned the existence of God when I was told that Father Christmas didn’t exist), but education is never a bad thing – only ignorance.

          • Jesus_Mohammed

            Yes, as long as religions persist there is great value in showing them to students side by side, in “Comparative Religion” classes, so that those religions are all seen objectively. The PROBLEM IS, however, we can’t be sure that if we permit any kind of religious classes in the curriculum that the teachers teaching them will all be rational, responsible, atheists or humanists. Give a “Comparative Religion” class to a teacher who on the side is an ardent Catholic and you can bet your bottom dollar their message will be skewed!

            So Robert is right: faiths and religions out of schools completely. If people wish to behave according to religious delusions, let them do so in the privacy of their homes or private gathering places.

        • Cal

          I do not trust most religious education teachers to present religion in a balanced way. People of faith feel compelled to spread their “truth” and recruit.

        • ‘I understand your point, but there are so many religions. How do you determine which to give study time to?’

          Please forgive my butting in. I would disallow the teaching of religious doctrine in schools. I speak as an ex-teacher.

          I would replace it with lessons in critical thinking, and whilst ensuring that it was always age appropriate, I would set questions for analysis. Example; ‘is there an afterlife?’

          Other questions could discuss all manner of world problems of morality, medical ethics etc.

          In answering each question, the body of evidence and knowledge from the sciences, social sciences, and various religions could be considered. Religion could be tested for reliability in this process rather than accepted as dogma.

          • David H

            You’re certainly not “butting in” – it’s an open discussion and everyone’s point of view is welcome (apart from some of the trolls who appear from time to time, of course).

            FWIW, I think your suggestion is an excellent one.

      • Robert W. Pierce

        I would agree but clearly these schools are not doing that. They’re indoctrinating children with a personal bias against homosexuality.

    • lord thorpe

      I think this makes perfect sense. And put’s the responsibility on the parents. As tax payers I don’t think gay people and people who are not prejudiced (possibly the majority) should have to pay for children to be indoctrinated against us.

    • Jesus_Mohammed

      Exactly. And entirely unrelated to Tristram Hunt statement of truth regarding calling homosexuality a choice or a lifestyle, isn’t it about time we all started speaking, and not just thinking, about the elephant in the room? Tristram Hunt is clearly Prime Minister material, which, sadly, Ed Milliband simply isn’t.

  • Josh

    I wonder if these schools also teach that slavery is fine, women must not be allowed to speak in church, anyone who works on a Sunday must be stoned to death or that eating a prawn cocktail will deny you entry to heaven…

  • ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

    If this happens in America public schools it will be consider unconstitutional.

  • lord thorpe

    Good on him for speaking out.

  • john

    It doesn’t matter who funds the school, if the book is “dangerous” and “backward” (which it obviously is ) then ban it. The book does more than just give a christian viewpoint it dresses it up with logic and dubious research data/logic. It doesn’t just say Christians believe homosexuality is a sin, it also goes on to say

    “Some people mistakenly believe that an individual is born a homosexual and his attraction to those of the same sex is normal.

    “Because extensive tests have shown that there is no biological difference between homosexuals and others, these tests seem to prove that homosexuality is a learned behaviour.”

    It also states that AIDS can be avoided through religion

    If that isn’t “dangerous” info then what is? and surely when stating the above the alternative (and more common and accepted!!!) viewpoints should also be stated in the same paragraph,

    • John … I don’t fundamentally disagree with you, but I’d like to follow a different path. I would like to outlaw the teaching of religious doctrine. If a curriculum was delivered that taught critical thinking and challenged the atheist standpoint as well as each of the religious standpoints, then that would be a healthy position. Needless to say it would be necessary to ensure that it is age appropriate.

  • Jock S.Trap

    Another Labour MP I just cannot stand to watch but for once he speaks some sense.

    Those kind of book should have been thrown out decades ago and serve no purpose with adults let alone children.

    Teachers… Teach, Inspire, don’t discriminate.

  • Cal

    The fact that she feels her justification is adequate reveals a tightly closed mind.

  • Frank

    Homosexuality is a religion. When people teach that you are ‘born gay’ it is just as much a religious belief as any other, since there is no proof.
    So gays are not a new biological master race, but rather a religion just like satanism. paganism and other religions, but not like the monotheistic religions like judaism, christianity and islam.
    So people are entitled to have their religious beliefs, even if those beliefs disparage other religions. A homosexual is disparaging judaism, christianity and islam by claiming that the story of adam and even is false and should be replaced with the story of Adam and Steve. Similarly, jews, christians and muslims can also disparage the homosexual belief in adam and steve as an abomination that is against all that is holy.

    • So sorry but the argument presented is very flawed ~ religion is imposed by the indoctrination of zealots on innocent young lives. Whereas homosexuality becomes part of the child’s conscience mind as they develop without them having that view imposed on them.

      • Frank

        Religion is generally imposed (or rather taught) by a child’s parents, and not ‘zealots’ in a secular school environment, so the knowledge of religion is not per-programmed into a child’s DNA, but rather acquired through education. Homosexuality, depression, anger, hatred, happiness, bi-polar, schizophrenia become part of a child’s conscience after receiving stimuli that provoke those emotions, dysfunctions. They do not develop from thin air or because of some artifact in the DNA, as these are complex psychological logic structures that develop after continued learning, as all psychological dysfunction and equilibrium, occur as a result of the stimuli in the environment, and are thus learned. There is nothing that is per-programmed into the human DNA that guides sexual attraction as this is something that is taught, or ‘imposed’ by the indoctrination of ‘zealots’ on innocent young lives, generally through molestation and sexual exhibitionism, and teaching of hating the opposite gender, etc.

        • I see you are making the age-old mistake of thinking that homosexuality is a mental illness. This is ill-informed. Medical opinion no longer supports that view and its continuing usage is a deliberate confusion as a result of irrational prejudice experienced by those with minds poisoned by religious doctrine. This follows the familiar pattern of abuse; that is, that abuse begets abuse, the abused becoming the abuser. This in itself must be considered a hate crime against humankind.

          Religious teaching, as people persist in calling it, is in fact a form of abuse, specifically emotional abuse. Its use is principally against children but also against vulnerable adults. Its use is carried out by zealots that you correctly identify as ‘parents’, but also faith schools, clerical leaders etc. These people indoctrinate children with no due regard to the emotional welfare of the child. This again can only be considered as a hate crime against humankind.

          It may only be a matter of time before religious indoctrination becomes branded as the evil that it is. I wouldn’t be surprised if in the fullness of time these zealots get dragged before the courts to account for their actions.

          • Frank

            Teaching anti-religion (or atheism, homosexuality, paganism, satanism), is in fact a form of abuse, because it makes people believe that there is no g-d watching what they do, so they are less likely to behave appropriately when they believe that there is no consequences for behaving inappropriately. Thus, a person who is taught not to believe in g-d or religion, are automatically taught that there is no accountability, and thus the mind develops no natural restraints upon its behavior. For example, a person who believes in g-d is less likely to shoplift, because he knows that even if the store clerk doesn’t see it, g-d does, and will punish. them. A person who does not believe in g-d is only concerned about what he can get away with, and if the store clerk is not looking, and he can get away with stealing, then he will attempt it.

            And again, homosexuality is a religion, and so all those who practice it and preach it to others, will be called before the courts to account for their actions (just like all the other religions you are claiming to be committing hate crimes against humanity).

            Religion, is the belief in the unseen. No matter how many medical professionals you bring to state that homosexuality is natural, you still cant bring the one thing that will prove you right, which is the DNA gene that causes it in humans 100% of the time. Doesn’t exist, so homosexuality, or the belief that you are born gay, is just as much a religion as Jews, Christian, or Muslims that believe they are the ‘chosen people’ without any proof. Homosexuals are no different, because they believe they are the ‘chosen people’ and in reality, all they are saying is that they were chosen not to procreate with their soul mate, and thus they defy their own religion when they then attempt to get married, and conceive children with third parties outside of marriage to raise and abuse by forcing their religious zealotry upon innocent children.

          • ‘because it makes people believe that there is no g-d watching what they do, so they are less likely to behave appropriately when they believe that there is no consequences for behaving inappropriately. Thus, a person who is taught not to believe in g-d or religion, are automatically taught that there is no accountability, and thus the mind develops no natural restraints upon its behavior.’

            So let’s get this straight, Because I have no belief in any of the sky fairies, I am by default likely to be a person without ability to exercise self-control. You think I must be a stealing, murdering child molester or something … and you make this accusation (falsely) from that assumption alone even though you have identified yourself as a child abuser.

            Look I’m sorry for any abuse you may have suffered at the hands of zealots but it wasn’t committed by any of the good folk here. I can’t see that there can be much that can be done to help you. Your anger is misdirected ~ you must take this up with those people that did this unspeakable inhumane thing to you.

          • Frank

            The ‘abuse’ i suffered at the hands of ‘zealots’, were homosexual zealots, so from your mouth to g-d’s ears may he repair the unspeakable inhumane things they have done to me for nearly 3 decades

          • David Michael

            Really sorry to hear that Frank. Hopefully you have gotten some help that can resolve the past on that. I had similar stuff in my life, it’s not easy.

          • Frank

            Its all good. I got some help to break the guys head open. Two more scrambled eggs and i will have myself enough to make an omlet.

        • You are entirely wrong of course, so wrong one suspects you’re trolling.

          American Psychological Association, which with over 173,000 members is the largest professional body of its kind in the world:

          The University of California:
 (not a mental disorder)

          Conflicting religious views on homosexuality:

          Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays:

          Evolutionary imperative for homosexuality:

          Genetic predisposition:

          Homosexuality in animals:

          Straight woman married to gay man:

          But let’s not stop with the APA – here is a sample list of US organisations that are known to welcome LGBT: The Untited Nations, The American Medical Association, American Psychological Association, American Anthropological Association, World Health Organisation, American Academy of Pediatrics, Child Welfare League of America, National Association of Social Workers, North American Council on Adoptable Children, American Psychoanalytic Association, American Academy of Family Physicians, American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, Council on Child and Adolescent Health, American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Mental Health America, California Psychological Association, American Counselling Association, American Sociological Association, American School Health Association, National Association of School Psychologists, not to mention countless universities, local governments, labor unions, and virtually every human rights organisation that exists.

    • David Michael

      I think you are the only person I’ve ever met that lives soley on coocoo bird eggs. Poached scrambled or fried? ;)

      • Frank

        The homopedes once told me that i am the one that flew over the coocoo’s nest.
        Made them eat those words, but still they revert back to trying to create fecal fetuses. The homopedes never learn.

    • If anyone follows the Holy Bible as the literal Word of God, they may well go to your “Heaven” but they will also spend the rest of their life in prison.

      Please confirm you are not a hypocrite, and that you obey ALL the Holy Bible.

      The following are examples of “deeply held religious belief” that allow “Christians” to keep slaves, to refuse service to females, left handed people, mixed race couples, HIV patients, alongside a host of other infringements of “The Word of God”:

      These are all God’s laws, all confirmed by Jesus Christ, so no wiggle room:

      God hates red heads:
      GENESIS 25:25 Esau is red haired ROMANS 9:13 “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”

      Alcohol absolutely forbidden:
      Ephesians 5:18. Proverbs 20:1, Proverbs 23:20-21, Isaiah 5:11, Leviticus 10:9, Romans 14:21, Galatians 5: 21, 1 Corinthians 6:10

      Women inferior to men:
      CORINTHIANS 14:34 Women should be silent in the churches, for they are not permitted to speak, but should be submissive, as the law also says.
      TIMOTHY 2:12 “But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence”

      Killing commanded for these offences:
      DEUTERONOMY 13:13-17 A town that allows the practice of more than one religion must be burned to the ground and its citizens slaughtered.
      DEUTERONOMY 21:18-21 “If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey the voice of his father or the voice of his mother… then all the men of the city shall stone him to death with stones.”
      DEUTERONOMY 22:13-21 A woman not a virgin on her wedding night must be executed.
      DEUTERONOMY 22:22 If a married person has sex with someone else’s husband or wife, both adulterers be stoned to death.
      DEUTERONOMY 22:28-29 A virgin who is raped must marry her rapist.
      DEUTERONOMY 25:11-12 If a man gets into a fight with another man and his wife seeks to rescue her husband by grabbing the enemy’s genitals, her hand shall be cut off and no pity shall be shown her.
      LEVITICUS 18:19 A married couple who have sexual intercourse during a woman’s period shall both be executed.
      LEVITICUS 20:9 “Anyone who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death.”
      NUMBERS 15:32,35 Anyone who picks up sticks on the Sabbath must be killed.

      • No marriage will be sanctioned between people who have been divorced. (Matthew 5:32)
      • No marriage shall be sanctioned between Christians & non-Christians. (2 John 1:9-11, 2 Corinthians 6:14-17)
      • No marriage shall be sanctioned in which the wedding ceremony shall occur during the women’s menstrual cycle (Leviticus 18:19, 20:18, & Ezekiel 18:5-6)
      • No marriage shall be sanctioned of people of different races. (Deuteronomy 7:3, Numbers 25:6-8, 36:6-8, 1 Kings 11:2)
      • A married couple who have sexual intercourse during a woman’s period shall both be executed. (Leviticus 18:19)
      • No marriage shall be sanctioned involving a widow (unless it is to her brother-in-law). All women whose husbands have passwed away shall refrain from intimacy & pleasure for the remainder of their lives. (1 Timothy 5:5-15)
      • No marriage shall be sanctioned for any man who has had sexual thoughts of any woman other than his intended (Matthew 5:28)
      • A woman not a virgin on her wedding night must be executed. (Deuteronomy 22:13-21)
      • If a married person has sex with someone else’s husband or wife, both adulterers be stoned to death. (Deuteronomy 22:22)
      • A virgin who is raped must marry her rapist. Deuteronomy 22:28-29)
      • If a man dies childless, his widow is ordered to have intercourse with each of his brothers in turn until she bears her deceased husband a male heir. (Mark 12:18-2)

      BUT Polygamy endorsed by God:
      • Solomon … had 700 wives … and 300 concubines. (1 Kings 11:2-3)
      • Rehoboam … took 18 wives, and 60 concubines. (2 Chronicles 11:21)
      • But Abijah waxed mighty, and married 14 wives…. (2 Chronicles 13:21)

      God hates disabled people:
      LEVITICUS 21:17-21 “Speak to Aaron, saying, ‘No man of your offspring throughout their generations who has a defect shall approach to offer the food of his God. | ‘For no one who has a defect shall approach: a blind man, or a
      lame man, or he who has a disfigured face, or any deformed limb, | or a man who has a broken foot or broken hand, | or a unchback or a dwarf, or one who has a defect in his eye or eczema or scabs or crushed testicles. | ‘No man among the descendants of Aaron the priest who has a defect is to come near to offer the LORD’S offerings by fire; since he has a defect, he shall not come near to offer the food of his God.”

      God approves of slavery:
      COLOSSIANS 3:22 “Slaves, obey your human masters in everything; don’t work only while being watched, in order to please men, but work wholeheartedly, fearing the Lord.”
      PETER 2:18 “Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh.”
      EPHESIANS 6:5 “Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ.” —

      Left handedness is an abomination to God:
      Genesis 48:13-19 (King James Version)
      13 And Joseph took them both, Ephraim in his right hand toward Israel’s left hand, and Manasseh in his left hand toward Israel’s right hand, and brought them near to him.
      14 And Israel stretched out his right hand, and laid it upon Ephraim’s head, who was the younger, and his left hand upon Manasseh’s head, guiding his hands wittingly; for Manasseh was the firstborn.
      15 And he blessed Joseph, and said, God, before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac did walk, the God which fed me all my life long unto this day,
      16 The Angel which redeemed me from all evil, bless the lads; and let my name be named on them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; and let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.
      17 When Joseph saw his father placing his right hand on Ephraim’s head he was displeased; so he took hold of his father’s hand to move it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head.
      18 And Joseph said unto his father, Not so, my father: for this is the firstborn; put thy right hand upon his head.
      19 And his father refused, and said, I know it, my son, I know it: he also shall become a people, and he also shall be great: but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his seed shall become a multitude of nations.

      Matthew 6:3 (King James Version) But when you do alms, let not your left hand know what your right hand does:

      Matthew 25:33-34…41 (King James Version):
      33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
      34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:

      41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:

      Ecclesastes 10:2 (King James Version)
      A wise man’s heart is at his right hand; but a fool’s heart at his left.

      Psalm 118:15-16 (King James Version)
      15 Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!
      16 The Lord’s right hand is lifted high; the Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!”

      Psalm 16:11 (King James Version) Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore
      Psalm 110:1 (King James Version) A Psalm of David. The Lord says to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.”

      Killing naughty children commanded by God:
      DEUTERONOMY 21:18-21 “If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey the voice of his father or the voice of his mother… then all the men of the city shall stone him to death with stones.”
      LEVITICUS 20:9 “Anyone who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death.”

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