The Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) rallied U.S. students to participate in their annual Day of Silence Friday, during which the students are supposed to vow to remain silent in school, apparently to draw attention to claims of “anti-LGBTQ behavior.”
According to GLSEN, which was founded by gay activist and former Obama administration “Safe Schools Czar” Kevin Jennings, the “Day of Silence” is “a national student-led demonstration where LGBTQ students and allies all around the country—and the world—take a vow of silence to protest the harmful effects of harassment and discrimination of LGBTQ people in schools.”
This year’s #DayOfSilence is centered on taking action against the erasure of LGBTQ+ people in school curriculums. Our silence will demonstrate the impact on the entire school community when LGBTQ+ people are silenced and erased.
Register TODAY: https://t.co/A6U1Idfrid pic.twitter.com/auibqIdi0L
— GLSEN (@GLSEN) April 21, 2022
Students have been encouraged to register with GLSEN to “get the latest updates on Day of Silence resources and special opportunities like celebrity engagements.”
“And don’t forget to share on social media about GLSEN’s Day of Silence, encouraging students and educators to register,” the activists urge children.
GLSEN says students can participate in the Day of Silence virtually, in-person, or via a “hybrid” venue.
The “in-person student guide” spurs children to take “action” to “call attention to the silencing and erasure of LGBTQ+ people in schools.”
In advance of the Day of Silence, students in schools were advised by GLSEN to meet with their Gay-Straight Alliance or LGBTQ+ club members at school and “identify a supportive adult to back you up on your day of action.”
“This is helpful in case anyone gives you trouble or if you need school staff to sponsor your event,” GLSEN advises children.
“Connect with your local GLSEN Chapter for support in organizing your event,” the activists recommend, thus ensuring children in schools have a direct connection to GLSEN.
GLSEN is promoting Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA)’s resolution to nationally recognize its Day of Silence amid the outrage of parents across the nation who are asserting LGBTQ books and other materials available to young children in schools is nothing less than sexual “grooming.”
🚨BREAKING: @RepMarkTakano, the first openly gay POC elected to Congress, introduced a resolution to recognize GLSEN's #DayOfSilence.
Amidst attacks against LGBTQ+ youth, it's critical to put a 🔦on the harm of anti-LGBTQ+ discrimination in schools. https://t.co/TnuIe2whcH
— GLSEN (@GLSEN) April 21, 2022
“Make posters and hang them around school, share on social media, and on your school’s morning announcements,” GLSEN continues.
Students are urged to conduct their own social media campaigns to advertise the GLSEN Day of Silence:
Change your profile/photo frame to a Day of Silence graphic now until 3:00 PM your time on April 22. Day of Silence is a silent protest against the erasure and bullying of LGBTQ+ people on school campuses around the country. By changing your profile, you are raising awareness of LGBTQ+ erasure and harassment! Imagine if LGBTQ+ people in schools were invisible. It’s a powerful statement that can make folks ask questions and join in solidarity to protect, promote, and empower LGBTQ+ students in schools. Let’s paint a message across our online platforms and show them our Silence is Loud!
Additionally, GLSEN encourages students to “post a video” of themselves “being silent.”
Other Day of Silence activity suggestions include a “T-shirt design party,” “poetry and other forms of writing,” and a “Zine making party.”
On tomorrow's #DayofSilence we'll:
➖Stay silent to represent the silencing of LGBTQ+ youth
➖Share a Moment of Silence at 3 PM ET on IG Live
➖#BreakTheSilence at 7 PM ET with an IG Live rally ft. @mattxiv, @_michaelcimino_, @cammiescott + more! https://t.co/A6U1Idx2GN pic.twitter.com/ILRswvLupO
— GLSEN (@GLSEN) April 22, 2022
GLSEN, along with abortion industry giant Planned Parenthood and other LGBTQ activists, has been a primary promoter of LGBTQ curricula in K-12 schools and has guided the creation of the National Sex Education Standards, adopted, most recently, in New Jersey.
We're working w/@sexedhonestly @SIECUS @AdvocatesTweets @GLSEN & @HRC to call for LGBTQ-inclusive sex ed:https://t.co/cJksxIba4I #EqualSexEd
— Planned Parenthood (@PPFA) December 2, 2015
The LGBTQ activist group describes itself on its Twitter account as “a leading education organization working to create safe & #LGBTQ-inclusive K-12 schools.”
On its website, GLSEN touts the book Heather Has Two Mommies by Leslea Newman is now “a staple in many public, school, classroom and family libraries.”
At the high school level, GLSEN recommends “Newman’s book October Mourning: A Song for Matthew Shepard and its accompany resource, He Continues to Make a Difference: Commemorating the Life of Matthew Shepard.”
Matthew Shepard was a young gay man who was murdered in 1998 and is now an icon for LGBT activists who have created a myth surrounding his tragic death, one that has since been used to draw attention to the narrative of homophobic hate.
The story of Shepard’s murder, however, was debunked several years ago by investigative journalist Stephen Jimenez, who discovered that Shepard was not murdered by a stranger because he was gay, but rather by a fellow drug dealer with whom he often had sex.
GLSEN states these materials are “a resource for high school educators that includes information and best practices for supporting LGBT students and developing an LGBT-inclusive curriculum, along with classroom resources and lessons aligned with ELA [English Language Arts] Common Core State Standards.”
The Twitter account Libs of TikTok noted resources touted by the National Sex Education Standards normalize watching porn for children:
New Jersey’s new sex curriculum points elementary students to watch videos from Amaze. This is one of their videos. They are telling 9 year olds to watch porn. Groomers. pic.twitter.com/9GrXYmJsNl
— Libs of TikTok (@libsoftiktok) April 8, 2022
In a recent press release dated March 28, GLSEN condemned Florida’s Parental Rights in Education law, referring to it as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
“Governor Ron DeSantis and his followers in the state legislature are relentless in their harmful and blatant attacks on Florida’s LGBTQ+ young people,” Melanie Willingham-Jaggers, executive director of GLSEN, and GLSEN’s Florida staff said in a statement.
“The ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill (HB 1557/SB 1834) is part of an ongoing campaign against LGBTQ+ communities led by Governor DeSantis that will silence supportive educators and erase LGBTQ+ communities from school curriculum,” the activists added.
The GLSEN leaders said the new law was “erasing LGBTQ+ communities from classrooms the option to access supportive and affirming curriculum in school.” [sic]
“This continuing pattern of openly targeting LGBTQ+ youth from Governor DeSantis includes ‘misinterpreting’ anti-bullying and harassment research to use as misinformation, banning trans athletes from competing in school sports, and erasing LGBTQ+ inclusive resources from the state’s Department of Education website,” they insisted.
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Susan Berry, PhD is national education editor at The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Kevin Jennings” by Kevin Jennings.