This week, the BBC aired a short documentary about the recent protests outside schools in Birmingham, whereby parents – from primarily Muslim background – are protesting about children being taught about different families and relationships; including but not exclusive to LGBTQ families.
The programme was a difficult watch, and for me, as someone who is now so used to ignorance and hatred, the most challenging part was watching how staff members at the schools involved are dealing with this. These protests are now happening daily and they don’t appear to be stopping, despite so-called injunctions now being in place at certain schools.
The lessons – also under the name of the ‘No Outsiders’ project – were even recently halted to allow various groups the opportunity to share their “views” and consult with teaching staff, however no sooner after the lessons were re-introduced, after the consultation, the protests began again.
I wish I could predict lottery numbers as well as the way I can predict the actions of bigots and the ignorant. I’d be rich before I knew it.
But the thing is, a common pattern throughout these protests is the information (or more-so, MIS-information) being fed to parents about the lessons, and as we all know; ignorance stems from fear. Fear of the unknown. On top of that, you also have deep-rooted homophobia which is being covered up as religious freedom and legitimate debate (It’s not. It’s just homophobia).
So with this in mind, here’s my guide to what these lessons are actually all about.
Let’s start at the beginning: