Kyle and her husband moved to Brookfield in 1986. She became active in local politics and started blogging in 2004. Her focus is primarily on local issues but often includes state and national topics, too. Kyle looks at things from the taxpayers' perspective in a creative, yet down to earth way, addressing them from a practical point of view.
People are still talking about that New Berlin young man at Eisenhower High School, who passed himself off as a teen girl on the internet and then blackmailed his fellow male student respondents for homosexual "favors". It is shocking indeed for many adults--especially if they are older.
For now I won't talk about what would possess a teen to send nude photos to someone of the opposite (or same sex) in the first place. That is bizarre enough. But even more difficult to understand are the 31 heterosexual young men, who got caught in this perverted scam, who rather carry out a homosexual's wishes than fess up to being duped into sending a nude picture.
Maybe it is because I recently spent 3 days (about 10 hours) looking over Elmbrook's HGD materials that I am looking at this incident a little differently. I am looking at it from the perspective of what is being taught to our children from Kindergarten on to 10th grade--the last year of sex-ed instruction.
I do not know what is being taught in New Berlin, but I believe most programs, unless they are from a Christian curriculum company or a company that stresses abstinence, will follow the same track.
First the successes: (This is from the curriculum's perspective, not mine.)
In Kindergarten there was a book all about families. It compared traditional families and non-traditional families. Yes, it included the "family" that had 2 mommies and another with 2 daddies. It also gave examples from the animal kingdom: Lions have one daddy and many mommies.
Yes, that is what I want my child to learn. (Sarcastically said) That a human family is nothing more than a different kind of animal family! (There was no mention how many animal parents eat their young.)
The underlying message is that homosexuality is OK, right? It is just a different kind of choice.
As the children get older, the emphasis is said to be abstinence is best, but it really is pregnancy and disease prevention is best. Do what you want, just don't get caught.
Homosexual sex would not lead to pregnancy, so would that be deemed a success? I don't know if the boys used safe sex* practices, so we don't know if we can call that aspect a success or failure.
From Kindergarten on, the message for abuse is, it is not your fault. If something seems wrong or makes you uncomfortable, tell a teacher, trusted adult or your parent. (I am OK with this, but I would reverse the order.) I would think what the perpetrator was asking of the 31 victims made them feel uncomfortable or seemed wrong. Obviously, this message fell on deaf ears on both counts.
Rather than these embarrassed young men going to a parent, teacher, or even a friend, they resorted to the only solution they could come up with: give in to the blackmailer's demands. (But keep in mind, there is nothing wrong with homosexuality, according to their HGD instruction, they just need to do it safely.) Of course most heterosexual young men wouldn't want that homosexual label to stick, but since the activity was done in secret, it did not count.
That leads me to the area lacking in our HGD materials: the emotional scars of sexual activity (not the physical consequences of catching a STD or becoming pregnant--they discuss that), but the damage to the psyche of engaging in pre-marital sex. I did not see much discussed on this subject in the HGD materials. These young men thought they had figured out a workaround to their transgression. They will carry the emotional scars for life.
Another failure: The death of modesty
Has HGD made children today so comfortable with their nakedness, in the context of sex, that they see nothing wrong with taking a nude picture of themselves, much less sending it to a stranger?
The discussion of HGD in many of the grades is co-ed. Sensitive subjects are discussed in mixed groups. Videos and DVDs that include interviews with older teen adults and young adults talking about their sexual mistakes in their adolescent years are designed to be viewed in co-ed settings.
I believe this leads to destroying sexual modesty.
Last failure: Inability to come up with another solution.
What I cannot figure out is why the victims did not turn the table on the perpetrator. If sending nude photos is such a prevalent practice, why wouldn't the victim just spread the word that "the girl" was really a gay guy! You know, smear him. Tell your good buddies about it and act outraged that the girl was really a gay guy and smear him--maybe not for being gay because that is just an alternate life style choice, but for false advertising?
Parents, I ask you to really consider what is being taught to your kids when in school. You can opt out. You can elect to select your own sex ed program that fits your world view and teach it yourself or find an online program. You get to decide.
F.Y.I. The West Bend Library has a gay themed young adult section for grades 6 - 12 called "Out of the Closet." In time, will anything shock us? (I noticed this link on Mark Belling's site.)
UPDATE: Area residents from the West Bend, Germantown, Hartford, Slinger & Kewaskum area (their tax dollars support West Bend's library) are meeting at the West Bend Community Memorial Library, 630 Poplar St., in West Bend, on March 2, 7pm Tuesday evening, to discuss the gay book section of the library. For more information see: West Bend Library issue with GAY books for CHILDREN moves to Board. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
*There is no such thing as safe sex since it uses the same method as the least effective measure in preventing pregnancy, considering viruses and bacilli are much smaller than a sperm cell.