Three Complaining Parents Force High School To Apologize For Showing “Biased” Marriage Equality Video

Screen Shot 2014-05-14 at 11.57.58 AMA Superintendent speaking on behalf of Craig High School in Janesville, Wisconsin apologized on Tuesday for the school’s decision to show a pro-marriage equality video during a school assembly, calling it an “unbalanced” representation of a contentious issue.

The video, which you can watch in full below, is part of the popular “Kids React” series. It features 13 children between the ages of 5 and 13 reacting to the Home Depot gay marriage proposal that went viral last year, and subsequently having a favorable discussion about same-sex marriage.

The 16-minute video, packed with indisputable facts and raw opinion, was shown during advisory periods on the Day of Silence, an annual day organized by GLSEN to shed light on the bullying and harassment of LGBT students. It had been selected by the school’s Gay/Straight Alliance Club, and approved by both the club’s advisors and the school principal.

According to Twin Cities, Superintendent Karen Schulte issued an official apology for showing the video when three parents wrote letters complaining about it.

In her statement, Schulte claims that board policy 6021 prohibits the distribution of materials regarding “controversial issues in the classroom” when both sides of the issue are not presented. Her issue with the video below is that it allegedly weighs heavily in favor of same-sex marriage.

“The national website states that the purpose of the Day of Silence is to call attention to the harassment and discrimination faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth,” Schulte wrote. “In the School District of Janesville, the focus of the Day of Silence is also to eliminate bullying and harassment toward all students.”

However, Schulte noted that she thought the video was “well-intentioned” and provided a “teachable moment” for kids.

On Facebook, the video’s creators beg to differ. “The episode is a great resource to start a conversation about both sides of the topic, not to shut it down due to community outcries,” they write. “This is unfortunate.”

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  • Mezaien

    K.C.U.F the school and the parent and al the Christian! the children say it all.

  • DonW

    Let the homophobes offer “their” side: blah blah blah because Jeebus. Most kids will see right through it.

  • tdx3fan

    I think the parents have a point. This is the type of issue that is beyond controversial. I think that the school should have sent permission slips home to get parental permission before showing this video. It is up to parents if they want their child exposed to this issue or not and how they go about doing it.

    I do realize that it is easy to get caught up into the right side of argument, but the debate here is if the argument should enter the classroom or not.

  • Throbert McGee

    Children should not be human shields in an ideological war. This video is actually worse than the “won’t somebody please think of the chill-drun!” wailing that religious homophobes AND gay activists routinely engage in.

    It’s worse than that because here, the video producers are implicitly daring opponents of same-sex marriage to criticize and verbally attack the cute little kids in the video. Most SSM opponents aren’t willing to tell someone else’s 9-year-old kid directly “Your opinion that boy/boy marriages are okay is just WRONG, and if that’s what your parents taught you, they’re WRONG, too” — so they can only complain (not without reason) that the video was edited in such as way as to present a biased point of view.

    Hence my accusation about “human shields.”

    If gay grown-ups can’t make their own case for same-sex marriage without hiding behind adorable squeaky-voiced mascots in an obviously scripted video presentation, then at least have the common decency to use actual puppets as seen in this example, and not rented children.

  • Throbert McGee

    an obviously scripted video presentation

    I don’t mean to say that the children were necessarily just actors following a script; I mean to say that the adult producers had a script — and they carefully coached and cued the kids to give responses that were extemporaneous and “off-the-cuff”, yet more or less stuck to the script.

    This video was, in short, a sort of “advertorial” on behalf of same-sex marriage, and not by any stretch of the imagination an honest documentary about how real children think about this issue. Advertorials should probably not be shown in school assemblies, even though I admit that corporate and government sponsors have been doing this since the invention of film projectors.

    But by all means go ahead and attack the complaining parents for acting like counter-revolutionary kulaks, comrades.

  • sangsue


    If it was anti-gay you know that the “controversial” rule would somehow not apply.

  • sfbeast

    Just watched the whole video. Those kids are amazing. I don’t know if I could have expressed myself at all that well when I was their age. I’m guessing the moms who objected have other problems in their lives. I hope their kids are OK.




    @sfbeast: Thats the problem. Their kids usually have issues coming from homes where kids are brainwashed that Gays are evil and dirty.

    However there is hope. The kids show that a few may be a bit freaked out but they still don’t spew any hatred on the couples and most of them don’t think it is a big deal at all……..

  • DarkZephyr

    @Throbert McGee: “But by all means go ahead and attack the complaining parents for acting like counter-revolutionary kulaks, comrades.”

    If I were to choose to “attack” them, I think that the fact that they are anti-marriage equality would be quite enough of a reason.

  • Throbert McGee


    I don’t know if I could have expressed myself at all that well when I was their age.

    Did it ever occur to you that what you see in the video was culled from hours and hours of flubbed takes and kids saying “ummm… like… ummm…”?

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