Controversial School Book

Good Evening All,

This is my first post on CA and I am reaching out to this online community to ask for advice concerning a moral dilemma that involves my job.

I am a teacher at a local high school in Connecticut. Last year, the school began distributing a book to the students, faculty, and staff to read over the summer. This program is called “One Book One (name of high school)” and the theme of the book sets the tone for the following year where teachers are required to conduct conversations and activities with their students.

Tomorrow is the “big reveal” of the book to the students. I was given a sneak peak at this year’s book which is called “Every Day” by David Levithan. For a detailed description of the book, please visit amazon.com and look it up. In a nutshell, the story has to do with “gender identity theory” and I am feeling deeply conflicted with it’s underlying message. I am also concerned about my job requiring me to use this book as a tool for discussion with my students and condone this ideology.

I am afraid that if I refuse to participate in the school-wide activities and discussions that I may face disciplinary measures. I cannot, in good conscience, condone this and spread untruths to my students. Just looking for some advice and if anyone has ever experienced anything similar to this. Should I morally object to this or just submit to the powers that be? Thank you all in advance! :confused:

Pray for me! [BIBLEDRB][/BIBLEDRB]

Hi, Hans!

…I am often bemused by some of the anti-Catholic propaganda that attempts to erase Christ from the Church with such claims as “Constantine” and “Church apostasy.” They may be fully ignorant of the actual persecution of the Church where Bishops and others suffered tremendously… some losing life, limbs, and even their eyes… never giving up JESUS!

…yet, through the marvel of ignorance (or outright hatred of the Body of Christ) these theories espouse these dead and living martyrs as the states supporter and collaborators… it is as though Christians would suffer all sorts of assault only to turn from Jesus because “there’s a new sheriff in town.”

…we, Christians in the US, are soft… we have no understanding of persecution… though it has been happening throughout the past decades (putting aside the brutal persecution of the 19th century’s Mexico, Spain, Russia…) as atheists and others have been warring against Christianity…

What you are facing is just another level of that persecution… you will have to make a decision, do you love your life more than Christ? Are you willing to give up your life for Christ?

In your case it is your financial wellbeing and your status in your community.

Could you give up your life and serve God in a Catholic/Christian school system, even if your income suffers?

Society has already answered: corporations have been measuring the “buck” line and have been embracing everything that keeps their bottom-line fat (ie: commercials depicting interspecies animals as married couples…); what you are describing has been done before (books and agendas to brainwash elementary-age children into accepting the homosexual lifestyle not just as another lifestyle but even as the “enlightened” and “correct” lifestyle…

Somewhere along the line I heard it expressed that “teachers” shape the mind of the future as they are the nurturers of society’s children… this, my friend, is where you stand… at the threshold of Hope or destruction…

Do you choose to Build the Body of Christ one mind at a time or do you choose to help erode the Truth?

…I empathize with you… I once thought that I would become an actor… I was enamored with the idea of captivating the mind of the audience as my portrayal of a segment from Macbeth was extremely successful–I can still savor the moment, even today, when the whole classroom turned their heads to the back of the room as I recited: “Is this a dagger which I see before me, the handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee…” …to have such power of persuasion where all my classmates would turn in search of my vision… WOW… yet, the dream died as I subsequently learned that much of the art (entertainment industry) was populated by all sorts of sexual ambiguity and permissiveness… I gave up my dream for Christ…

You may be at that fork on the road… though, I must confess that your decision is much more complex than mine was since you actually have to weigh in more than just a dream.

My prayers are with you.

Maran atha!

Angel

I am guessing that this is a tax funded government school. Administrators pushing their particular political-social agendas on students is not appropriate. This is something for the elected school board to address.

Would you be allowed to present opposing viewpoints? If so, you might want to check out WaltHeyer.com. Mr. Heyer had a sex change to be a woman, but found out that was a bad idea & switched back to being a man. Apparently he’s a Christian, but I don’t know what denomination. Pro-transgender people say his is a minority position & he’s wrong about most who go thru the surgery. I wouldn’t know, but when I heard him on the radio he sounded sensible to me. So did a couple of articles on various websites.

We have had one person in our family who has gone from being male to female. I don’t think he’s happy (I really have a hard time thinking of him as a woman).

It sounds like it’s too late for the school to change the book, so protesting will go nowhere. Are they planning events around gender identity? That might be something you could call the St Thomas More Society about, or the ACLJ (note: J, not U). They are familiar with school issues.

Other than that, I don’t really understand how someone who is not, say, a girl, could know that whatever he is feeling is “like a girl.” So, in your shoes, I’d probably say, hey, I don’t know what being transgender feels like, so I can’t really address that topic. I do know that it is wrong to be mean to someone or to treat someone badly, right? And then move on to a good life lesson about the book, iyswim.

ETA: Also, try to get them to talk about the book rather than they other way around.

Just allow the students to discuss the book. You don’t have to state your opinion. If the book is really as boring as the reviews said on Amazon, the kids will forget about it in two minutes. Don’t worry about the minefield we Christians must traverse. Just continue to pray, and remember that Our Lady has already crushed the serpent’s head.

Your decision sounds very simple. Based on the book’s description, the character can actually be male or female while being male. Anyway, you’ve hit the nail on the head. After years of being told to reject “norms,” the exact same thing is happening here. Only, instead of mom and/or dead teaching you, directly and indirectly, about what it means to be male and female, a group of strangers is trying to tell young people to accept their norms. Which are self-invented fantasies.

I’ve had some teaching experience (7th to 8th grade level) and all I can say is, young people need teachers that will give them something truthful, not fill their heads with nonsense. And, right now, what these kids are getting in school is being amplified by social media - Facebook has dozens of gender identities you can pick from. And the mainstream media.

Keep that in mind. Complete strangers want to take over the roles of mother and father, without telling mom and dad. Because what’s more important? The truth or their untruth?

Best,
Ed

I read this book a couple of years ago, so I’ll just add more details about what it’s about (from what I remember).

The book has a science-fiction/fantasy premise. The main character, known only as ‘A’, is a person who doesn’t have a body of their own - every day he wakes up in a different body, with access to that person’s thoughts, and can even choose to control what the person does (although ‘A’ generally just ‘observes’ the person going about their day). I guess you could think of ‘A’ as a kind of human soul without a body.

During the book, ‘A’ inhabits various people’s bodies: male, female, gay (one day ‘A’ goes to Gay Pride), straight, and transgender. The plot is that ‘A’ meets a girl and falls in love with her, and every day tries to meet up with her and get to know her while in the bodies of different people.

The main problem of the book, I guess, from a theological/moral perspective, is that it pushes the idea that the body is just a shell, and that our “real” selves are our souls. It transpires, for example, during the book that ‘A’ once fell in love with a boy, because ‘A’ doesn’t identify as male or female. ‘A’ tries to reason with the girl he loves that she should just love ‘A’ for himself, regardless of whether he’s male or female that day.

What I dislike about the book is the way it conflates different ideas of what ‘love’ is, in an attempt to push an agenda that gender and sex are irrelevant to love. Of course it’s fine to love someone regardless of what their sex is - but sexual love has to take sex into account, because - duh - it’s sexual love.

I also think the dualism involved is quite dangerous, the idea that what really matters is your mind/soul, and your body is irrelevant to your identity. That’s something that Catholics can’t accept, and probably other religions would say the same.

As for redeeming features… well, there’s a scene in which ‘A’ wants to have sex with his girlfriend, but decides it wouldn’t be right while he’s in this boy’s body - although, it seems like the only reason he’s against it is because his ‘host’ for the day is a virgin, and ‘A’ thinks it would be wrong for that to be his first sexual experience - surely, it would be wrong, really rape, either way?

He also meets another person like him, who has discovered a way to stay in the same body every day. This person has basically taken over his 'host’s life, in complete control of his every action, with the mind of the host trapped and unable to exercise any control. ‘A’ decides that even though this would give him a chance at a more ‘normal’ life, a chance to make friends, get married, have a family etc., ‘A’ decides that this isn’t something he can do, and the book ends with ‘A’ leaving his girlfriend, accepting that he’ll never be able to have a ‘normal’ life. This is a noble act, at least.

I can’t really give you advice about what you should do, but maybe that will help a little.

One time my county adopted some books that were pushing evolution in an area where the parents did NOT approve. They protested and set up road blocks, refused to send the children to school until they met with the school board. Perhaps this is what will happen with your students. I bet a LOT of parents are not or will NOT BE happy with the choices the school has made. It should be up to the parents what kind of leaning gets into their children… In our case the school board provided alternate series… I’m praying for you. The children will talk to their parents…

This could develop into a big mess. Can you consult with an attorney who specializes in government employment cases and find out about your legal rights? The school board may be able to force you to read and teach about the book, but they should not have the right to shut you up in voicing your opinion. Let us know how things are working out. Catholic teaching is under attack every where these days.

Well, by this description it seems to be a nice fantasy novel. It baffles me that someone would find here a “gender identity theory”(whatever you assume it is) propaganda.

Is Zeus turning into a swan and seducing Leda bestiality propaganda? :smiley:

And if this A doesn’t have a body and is just some spirit then it’s natural for him\her .

Hi!

…depending upon how far back the book was written it could be a spin on a SG spinoff series where intergalactic travel is possible, with the catch that it was long-term travel… by the magic of science the travelers could leave their bodies and inhabit people on earth… which made it possible for them to take control of the sexual and emotional experiences of the bodies they inhabited.

…it is the same old agenda: ‘humans are fluid creatures that can become who they believe they are… today I feel like I’m an eagle, so please don’t offend me by requiring me to be confined to what is perceived as a human male!’

…it all goes back to the Ancient Serpent’s: ‘…surely, you will not die!’

Maran atha!

Angel

Hi, Petra!

…the US gov. got wise to that… they use the law to force parents to take their children to the gov’s. public brainwashing centers… I’ve heard it said that they even fought Christian parents who wanted to homeschool their children–but the key, for Christians, is Unity… until we do Become One Body our religious rights and our conscience will be trampled down with laws, regulations, and blatant forced-fed social “justice” jargons (which includes reversed psychology).

…so yeah, Pray, we must!

Maran atha!

Angel

Hi!

…did he insist on remaining a swan while he made sexual advances?

Maran atha!

Angel

He was in a swan form when copulating :wink: On a side note Ancient Gods didn’t have a problem with bisexuality and other kinky stuff.

Have you considered enquiring of your school authorities what great theme this book offers, what “tone” it is intended to set and why it’s a worthy inclusion in the curriculum?

Hi!

…I know (from the depictions in movies); so the swan (if an actual animal) would have been involved, against its will, in a sexual coupling known as bestiality; Zeus would have been engaging in zoophilia, and Leda could be guilty of both.

…it was not the ancient *gods *but the people who were (are) enthralled by the wicked and sorted acts which defy nature… and by extension Yahweh God.

Maran atha!

Angel

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