Safe Spaces- August and GLSEN.org
While reading Safe Spaces, I often reflected at the breaks and though of my school, and what exposure I had to LGBTQ issues, I could not think of a single example. Though I remember one student from high school who was openly gay, that was it. I do not remember learning about gay rights activists or the LGBTQ communities. I do remember when Ellen DeGeneres came out in 1997. I do remember the controversy over that, and how people were shocked and could not believe she "played" such a good straight person. I feel like now-a-days there are constant media reminders of the different types of lives that people can lead. Shortly after DeGeneres came out, Will and Grace started on NBC. Now we have a variety of shows and media that represent LGBTQ people and issues: Modern Family, Glee, Orange is the New Black, Shameless and the list goes on . I feel that times are changing, but that is not enough and we still need to part of the solution, and help put an end to the prejudice, "Making schools and communities welcoming to LGBT youth."
There is still a very large Global Divide on Homosexuality . As of 2013, 60% of people in the US said that society should accept homosexuality, with countries such as Canada, Spain, Germany, Czech Rep. France, Britain and Italy having rates as high as 88% saying yes to acceptance. US is second in our percentage gain since 2007, with an increase of 11%, demonstrating that we are ready for this change.
We need to think about how we "shape attitudes and ideologies" (August, pg. 83). I enjoyed how the chapter was broken into two section curricula and communication. August shared examples and remedies for starting the conversation and continuing it. I especially connected to the communication section, on page 96 the pronouns Ze and Hir were used, at first I thought it was a typo, but then I read on and noticed they were used again, and I realized it was intentional. I looked up Ze and Hir and found out they are pronouns along with Hirs that are not gender specific. It is our responsibility to educate ourselves so we can help educate the youth on these exact types of instances. ( I also took the time to make Google Doc and Word "learn spelling" of both Hir and Hirs).
As a I read though GLSEN.org and watched some videos I thought to myself, how and where can I bring this into my school, my Catholic school? Can I discuss LGBTQ issues at school? I don't like the idea of teaching through tolerance, because I don't think that tolerance is the right word. It should be more understanding, accepting not tolerating. I will continue to role these thought around and I would love to hear back from you all about how I could approach LGBTQ at a Catholic school.