Muslim and Coptic Christian Parents Join to Condemn New Jersey LGBT Rights Curriculum

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy speaks during a bill signing ceremony in Berkeley Heights, N.J., Tuesday, July 16, 2019. Murphy has signed a measure aimed at making so-called smart guns available in the state. He also signed three other measures aimed at reining in gun violence. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
AP Photo/Seth Wenig

More than 60 Muslim and Coptic Christian parents joined together Thursday in Jersey City, New Jersey, to protest the new state-mandated LGBT rights curriculum signed into law by Democrat Gov. Phil Murphy.

The parents condemned the curriculum, arguing it violates their First Amendment rights, reported NJ.com.

“Let’s be clear it is the parent’s right and only the parent’s right to teach their own children such matters,” said Rev. Thomas Nashed of St. George & St. Shenouda Church, who is a parent as well.

“We respect, love and tolerate everyone the same, as we are all the creation of God,” he said at a meeting of the Jersey City Board of Education. “The schools have a duty to educate the children, not to sexualize them and force our kids to have sexual education by labeling everything to a sexual orientation, therefore stripping away their innocence.”

Jersey City school board members, however, pushed back against the parents, denying the mandated LGBT curriculum is a violation of their First Amendment rights.

Gay school board trustee Gerald Lyons read aloud the First Amendment and said, according to NJ.com:

These curricula provide exposure to the differences in our community. They can address prejudice that lead to hateful actions by allowing students to learn that although our neighbors may have differences from us, we are all more alike than different.

In January, New Jersey parents lined up in the capital of Trenton to testify before the state board of education about the new law that mandates middle and high schools must “include instruction on the political, economic and social contributions (of people in the LGBTQ community) … at an appropriate place in the curriculum.”

The new mandate was signed into law in February 2019 by Murphy and is modeled after one in California that requires curriculum to be “LGBT and disability-inclusive.”

In New Jersey, LGBT rights group Garden State Equality helped write the curriculum, claiming it is modeled after the progressive trend to single out the contributions of various political groups, including blacks and Hispanics and immigrants.

“To tell our youth that our community doesn’t exist would be to teach them fiction,” Garden State Equality spokesperson Jon Oliveira told NJ.com. “We are not talking about or indoctrinating youth about the private lives of any individual or community.”

“LGBT-inclusive curriculum reduces the rate of bullying, harassment and intimidation in schools, it improves attendance and it also improves academic outcomes,” Oliveira added.

Breitbart News reported in January:

Murphy said it was his honor to sign legislation making it mandatory for schools to create lesson plans “about the rich contributions and accomplishments of our LGBTQ community and those with disabilities.”

“The Governor believes that ensuring students learn about diverse histories will help build more tolerant communities and strengthen educational outcomes,” Murphy’s office said in a statement.

The Family Policy Alliance of New Jersey has created a petition urging Murphy and the Democrat-led state legislature to include an opt-out process for parents:

The mandated curriculum requirements will now require textbook authors to speculate about the sexual preferences and gender-identity of noteworthy historical figures and then impose this false narrative on our children in public schools. A person’s significant historical contributions should not be predicated on their sex life or personal feelings about their sexual identity. The endless obsession with sexuality should not be forced upon our children!

Sexual relationships and identity are normally taught in health class with a parental opt-out, which means parents can excuse their children from these requirements. Now, parental rights are being trampled and our children are being forced to learn about sexual ideology throughout potentially all subject areas without allowing the parents the opportunity to opt their children out!

Family Policy Alliance is advocating for legislation called the “Protecting Parental Involvement in Curriculum Act.”

“This LGBT curriculum is intended to alter the world view of our children in support of a political movement based upon the post-modern view of human sexuality,” wrote Shawn Hyland and Len Deo of Family Policy Alliance. “Some of those controversial views promote sex with anyone and everyone as acceptable activity that shouldn’t have consequences and that the pursuit of sexual pleasure is the highest goal of men and women, now apparently boys and girls too.”

“This curriculum, forced into our schools by Garden State Equality, encourages our impressionable students to embrace the sexual revolution while disregarding science, biology, and their family values,” they added.

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