Thousands of Australians have written in support of a campaign by the Australian Christian Lobby, who are opposing anti-bullying programs in Australian schools on the basis that they teach students about homosexuality, LGBT relationships and the flagrant spreading of Christlike love.
“Though we endorse anti-bullying programs generally,” a spokesperson for the ACL told The Backburner, “we are totally opposed to programs that encourage students to treat homosexual children with respect, as Christ would have done.”
The program, named the Safe Schools Coalition, is intended to help staff and students properly support and accept same-sex attracted and gender-diverse people, reducing the issues such students face both in a school environment and beyond.
Letters submitted in support of the ACL’s opposition were forceful. “As a Christian, it is absolutely my duty to oppose any program which might encourage people to live by Christ’s simple maxim of ‘love thy neighbour,” read one.
“Treating other people with dignity and respect sounds suspiciously Christian, and as a Christian I absolutely can’t support that,” read another.
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The ACL spokesperson, Wendy Francis, argued that anti-bullying programs should encourage students to accept that heterosexuality is the norm and that treating people with absolutely basic respect as Jesus would have is a huge no-no.
“These programs need to encourage a baseline of Christian normality: like heterosexuality and treating others as subhumans worthy only of scorn and ridicule,” she said. “It’s in the Bible.”
A spokesperson for the Safe Schools Coalition argued that the program is really about building cohesion and encouraging safe environments for LGBT people in society. “It’s mostly about mutual respect and love, so I’m not totally sure what the resistance is here.”
Reports indicate that at the time of publishing, policymakers at the ACL were scouring the Bible for verses condemning the three scourges of ‘love, dignity and respect’.
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