We just wrote you a post celebrating gay moms in honor of Mother’s Day, but apparently not everyone feels the same way. Jenna Bissell is a fifth-grader who fell on the playground during recess and sustained a bloody injury to the face; but when she reported it to her teacher, she wasn’t given any medical attention and her two mothers weren’t notified. They were, understandably, shocked, and called the teacher to ask why they hadn’t been told their daughter was hurt.
“Shannon Peterson, one of Bissell’s mothers, said she called the school after Bissell came home injured on Feb. 26. She said she talked to Bissell’s teacher, asking why she hadn’t been notified and why the girl went without treatment. Peterson said she asked, “Is this because she has two moms?” and that the teacher replied with a raised voice that yes, this was the reason and that Peterson should take her children to another school.”
It’s not the first time we’ve heard about schools who don’t like their students’ gay moms, but Jenna Bissell’s school is public, not religiously affiliated. And while it would be nice to think so, it doesn’t seem like this incident was a fluke: “[Bissell’s mom] said there was a pattern of tension between Bissell and her teacher, including over an assignment in which students were asked to write a book about themselves. On one page, they were asked to write about something they did over the summer, and Bissell said she wrote about her parents’ wedding in Iowa, where gay marriage is legal. “She threw out the whole page about where my moms got married and how beautiful it was,” Bissell said, referring to the teacher. “She said, ‘This is gross, this is horrible, you need to write about something else.'” It’s chilling to imagine what would happen in this school if a child actually openly identified as gay – and chilling to think that this school receives federal funding. (@queerty)
Bissell attends the Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School in Rio Rancho, New Mexico; the phone number is 505-892-2575, and the principal is Marilee Bryant. Feel free to contact them and let them know how this makes you feel.
Gays can marry in Iowa, but maybe not go camping. State Senator Merlin Bartz wants to stop a proposed change of wording that would allow “spouses” to rent extra tents for their children, and not just “husbands and wives.” (@care2)
A Lutheran pastor who was removed years ago for a relationship with another man has been reinstated. He was removed in 2007 and is now serving in Atlanta, GA. (@eontarionow)
If you’re keeping track of the ways in which DADT hurts gay servicemembers and our country, add this to the list. Sarah Isaacson enrolled in ROTC before realizing she was gay; she told her commanding officer as soon as she knew herself, and was told that she owes the government $79,265.14 for the tuition they paid for her. Seems like kind of a lose-lose, no? (@queerty)
Autostraddle and Kristen Chenoweth have already told you how they feel about Ramin Setoodeh’s homophobic Newsweek article, and now out gay actor David Dean Bottrell throws his hat into the ring: “I kept asking myself, “Is this guy joking? Speaking as an openly out professional actor, I can assure you that there are a great many gay and lesbian actors who have spent pretty much their entire careers playing “straight.” Trust me. If they weren’t convincing, they wouldn’t still be working.” (@huffpo)
About 500 people marched in Lithuania’s first ever gay pride parade, while the police held back about 1,000 protestors. “Opinion polls have shown that more than two-thirds of Lithuanians are opposed to the gay pride event in the ex-Soviet republic of 3.4 million people, where the Roman Catholic church, which regards homosexuality as a grave sin, has a dominant role.” (@reuters)
The Philippines has just had accredited the first-ever gay political party. Ang Ladlad means “Out of the Closet,” and its platform is as follows: “1. Support of an Anti-Discrimination Bill that would criminalize discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. 2. Support for LGBT and LGBT-friendly businesses 3. Setting up microfinance projects for poor and disabled LGBT Filipinos 4. Setting up counseling and legal aid centers for poor and aged LGBT 5. Support the repeal of the Anti-Vagrancy laws.” Same-sex marriage is not part of their campaign. (@examiner)