But Johnny Can’t Spell G-A-Y

But Johnny Can’t Spell G-A-Y

The number of trans-identifying students is rising exponentially, leading to majorities in the student bodies of the most progressive schools. This rise is without any historical precedent. It is proof of social contagion, not of a preexisting biological reality.

It has been almost 90 days since Gay Pride month. According to the Los Angeles Unified School District, that is too long a hiatus from the imperative of immersing young children in the arcana of gay and trans identity. So throughout the week of October 9, many elementary school classrooms in Los Angeles will celebrate “National Coming Out Day,” which falls on October 11.

October is itself LGBTQ+ History Month, the Los Angeles Unified School District bureaucracy has reminded what it calls the district’s “fabulous educators.” Other LGBTQ+ programming will take place throughout October, picking up where Gay Pride month left off.  The goals for the so-called Week of Action are ambitious: to turn six-year-olds into budding gender and critical race theorists.

An LAUSD teacher forwarded me the district’s “toolkit” for teachers laying out that agenda. Use of the toolkit, decorated with a Black Power Fist superimposed on neon rainbow stripes, is nominally optional, but elementary school teachers who forego LGBTQ programming during the Week of Action will surely risk stigmatization. (The district did not respond to queries regarding expected classroom participation rates.)

At the Week of Action’s start, teachers should engage kindergarten and first-grade students in discussions about identity, aided by an activity called an “Identity Map.” Pupils chart their experiences of discrimination or privilege along 12 axes, including race, gender identity, sexuality, mental health, and body size. This mapping allows seven-year-olds to see themselves through the “lens of intersectionality.” Teachers then post the identity maps on the wall for a class discussion about students’ multiple “identities.”

Each elementary school day during the Week of Action can be devoted to a different LGBTQ+ celebrity, whose identity will be announced in morning assemblies, suggests the toolkit.

Monday is Jazz Jennings Day. Jennings’s fame rests on being one of the youngest children to date to claim a trans identity. “Assigned male at birth,” as Jazz’s publicity materials inevitably put it, Jazz allegedly asserted female identity at age two, and was diagnosed with gender dysphoria at age four. Subsequent surgery tried to cut Jazz’s body into a simulacrum of a female one and resulted in undisclosed “complications.” On Jazz Jennings day, the LAUSD recommends that kindergartners engage in the fabulous activities of “Which Outfit” and “Which Hairdo.” (One day is not enough to acknowledge the fabulousness that is Jazz. January in the LAUSD is devoted to holding Jazz and Friends Reading Events, supplemented by reading inclusive books in every grade.)

Friday is Carl Nassib Day, celebrating the “first openly gay active NFL player.” Kindergarteners on Carl Nassib Day should be encouraged to “Take a Pledge to Be An Ally!” Those who do so will get a diploma from the LAUSD that certifies that [insert pupil’s name] “hereby pledges” to “teach others to be allies” and to “Be an Upstander.”

Wednesday is Elliot Page Day, dedicated to a Canadian transgender actor, the “first openly trans man,” as the LAUSD puts it, to appear on the cover of Time magazine.

Third-graders will engage in an I Am Me activity, which includes guessing the gender identity of Willow Smith, a minor celebrity and daughter of Will Smith.

The National Coming Out Day toolkit links to additional materials from gay and trans advocacy groups.

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is even more insensate to childhood than the LAUSD. It offers a glossary of “LGBTQ Words for Elementary School Students” such as “cisgender,” “gender binary,” “intersex,” “non-binary,” “sex assigned at birth,” “bisexual,” “gay,” “pansexual,” and “queer.” The definitions are virtually indistinguishable from what a college student might find in his gender studies class. “Transgender or Trans” is “when your gender identity (how you feel) is different than what doctors/midwives assigned to you when you were born (girl/boy or sex assigned at birth).”

In 2022, 61 percent of third-graders in the Los Angeles Unified School District did not meet California’s watered-down, equity-driven standard for English. Children not reading by third grade will fall further and further behind in school, since they will be ill-prepared to absorb ever more complex academic content across a range of fields.

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