Those policies are the wrong way for governments to go, argues Micah Clark, director of the American Family Association of Indiana, which describes homosexuality as a "destructive" sexual behavior and lobbies against laws that extend rights to gays.
"We support fair treatment of people," Clark said, "but I'm not sure we should codify in the law that homosexuality is the same as one's skin color."
Fortunately, IPS Superintendent Eugene White isn't going to back down because of anything Clark or his ilk has to say about non-discrimination. White tells Gammill:
IPS Superintendent Eugene White said he is unfazed by criticism from the American Family Association and others who disagree with the policy.
"They're not living in reality," he said. "If we do know people are gay, we want to make sure we extend to them the same freedoms and liberties we give to everyone else. We wanted to be more inclusive."
I think the recent incident at Woodlan high school in Fort Wayne demonstrates the need for these policies. School administrators there reacted angrily to 10th-grader Megan Chases's editorial urging her fellow students to tolerate gays and lesbians by announcing a new censorship policy and threatening the school's newspaper advisor with disciplinary action if she failed to comply.
The new protections would affect 5,000 employees and 36,000 students at IPS. At Lawrence, 2,400 employees and 16,000 students will be affected by the policy changes. Interestingly, none of the gay employees who would benefit from the policy changes were willing to go on the record publicly in support of the policy. That's because they know what anti-gay bigoted groups like the AFA will do with that information if they publicly identify themselves.
Isn't it interesting that the public schools such as Carmel-Clay, which view themselves as the best in the state among public schools, have no non-discrimination policies? Of course, those schools in general are the least diverse of our public schools, which might help explain their lack of concern for how gays and lesbians are treated at their schools.