Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Broward Family Values

From the Miami Herald:

A music video that features Barney, Big Bird and SpongeBob singing a message of family and togetherness will not be distributed in Broward County schools, after members of a diversity committee deemed it objectionable.

Some members of the diversity committee said the We Are Family DVD, intended to teach tolerance to preschool and elementary kids, could confuse children about the difference between family members and strangers and open the door to discussion about sexual orientation.


Officials with the Broward County Christian Coalition, who viewed the video after hearing from a diversity committee member, said the underlying message of the DVD and accompanying teaching material promoted a homosexual agenda.

“We didn’t think it was appropriate for such young children,” said Barbara Collier, chairwoman of the coalition, which sent an “e-mail alert” to members about the matter. “They wouldn’t be able to understand what it was about.”

The controversy stems not from any explicit mention of homosexuality in the video — there isn’t any — but from its theme that people are all part of one big family, a message that, critics contend, could be construed to include pedophiles and other criminals. They also fear that the video could blunt other important messages for kids of that age, like the importance of being wary of strangers.

So the Christian Coalition comes out against such radical ideas as “love thy neighbor as thyself.” Yeah, we can’t be teaching kids anything like that.

Maybe Ms. Collier would be more accepting of a DVD that is more in keeping with her philosophy — like Triumph of the Will.