Disagreement = Hate Speech

Last month, a teacher in Florida was temporarily reassigned to a non-student contact position because of something he wrote on Facebook.  “I’m watching the news, eating dinner when the story about New York okaying same-sex unions came on and I almost threw up.  And now they showed two guys kissing after their announcement.  If they want to call it a union, go ahead.  But don’t insult a man and woman’s marriage by throwing it in the same cesspool of whatever.  God will not be mocked.  When did this sin become acceptable?”

Well, according to the Lake County school district, 2010 Teach of the Year, Jerry Buell, because of that posting on FB, violated the code of special ethics which calls for all educators to value the “worth and dignity of every person.”  Fortunately, he was reinstated, after the situation drew national attention, with both the ACLU and the Liberty Council backing Buell’s right to speak his mind.

But why was Mr. Buell put in this position in the first place? There was absolutely no evidence that Mr. Buell treated his homosexual students any differently.  He said he posted his comment on his time, on his computer, in his house.  Okay, I haven’t read the entire “ethics code” mentioned by the school district, but how can his posting about two guys kissing violate any teacher’s ethics?

Having sexual contact with a student, yes.  Altering students’ tests as someAtlanta teachers did, yes.  Bullying a student because he’s a homosexual, yes.  But Mr. Buell did none of these things.

He simply disagreed with the legalization of same-sex marriage.  He had an exemplary record and never showed any bias towards any student for any reason.  He did nothing to devalue the worth and dignity of any person.

Yet, some students and homosexual activists found Buell’s opinions “disturbing” and one former student went so far as to say it was “hateful language.”

Being “disturbed” because someone opposes homosexual marriage is laughable.

Slavery.  Now that’s disturbing.    The current state of our economy.  That’s very disturbing.  Child abuse.  That’s even more disturbing.  The killing of 54 million babies killed in this country by abortion is beyond disturbing.  Expressing your religious views about homosexuality should not be disturbing to anyone.

Thinking Mr. Buell’s posting is “hate speech” is ludicrous.

On the record so far, President Obama opposes homosexual marriage.  Should he not be President of all the citizens, including homosexuals, in this country?  Using the same rationale as the school district initially used in relegating Mr. Buell to non-student contact, shouldn’t Mr. Obama only be allowed to be President of heterosexuals?  Why have I not heard anyone call the President’s stance on same-sex marriage “hate speech” or him a “homophobe?”

When I’m called a racist by a self-proclaimed socialist because I support the Tea Party, I don’t go around whimpering and whining and accusing her of hate speech.  I simply clicked a key and “unfriended” her on FB.  Why remain “friends” with someone on FB when they think you’re a racist?

The sight of people wanting freedom being gunned down in the streets of Iranor in Tiananmen Square is “disturbing.”  People having to drink from separate water fountains and not being allowed to sit anywhere they want on a bus because of the color of their skin is “racist.”  A homosexual being murdered because of his sexual preference is “homophobic.”  Believing in lower taxes and smaller government is not racist.

What came to mind while I was writing this was the old idiom from my childhood, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” A great lesson to be learned by those who get their feelings hurt every time someone disagrees with them.

Verbally disagreeing with homosexual marriage is not “hateful” and should not be disturbing.  It’s called “free speech.”

I don’t get how we’ve gotten so thin-skinned in this country, but if you do, God bless you.

Author Bio:

For over twenty years, Leona has tried to heed her husband’s advice, “you don’t have to say everything you think.” She’s failed miserably. Licensed to practice law in California and Washington, she works exclusively in the area of child abuse and neglect. She considers herself a news junkie and writes about people and events on her website, “I Don’t Get It,” which she describes as the “musings of an almost 60-year old conservative woman on political, social and cultural life in America.” It’s not her intention to offend anyone who “gets it.” She just doesn’t. Originally from Brooklyn, and later Los Angeles, she now lives with her husband, Michael, on a beautiful island in the Pacific Northwest, which she describes as a bastion of liberalism.
Author website: http://www.idontgetit.us
  • Amelius

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  • Alessandra

    It’s the same thing on or off the Internet.

    First Apple and Google, then facebook, now paypal are targeting Christians with discrimination or censorship… and now even “Catholic” blogs are censoring Christians.

    My latest experience was on First Thoughts, a blog pretending to be “Catholic”, but which is really cheap, that censors Catholic views that criticize liberal ideology on homosexuality in order for its liberal editor (Joe Carter) to win “arguments” and “debates” on the subject.

    Shameless.

    http://socimages.blogsome.com/2011/09/20/censorship-on-first-thoughts-again/

    http://socimages.blogsome.com/2011/09/20/more-censorship-on-first-thoughtsfirst-things-we-cant-expose-the-intolerance-of-liberals-joe-carter-reaches-new-lows/

  • chief98110

    Yet, a student can post anything they want about a teacher and that’s protected speech.

    http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2010/02/student-facebook-tirade-against-teacher-is-protected-speech/

    • Yuyu

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  • Roger Ward

    Buell was lucky this time …. he gets to keep his job and voice an opinion. What about the next person who tries to use his voice? Will he or she be as lucky? Once again, the Politically Correct Police are trying to deprive him (and all of us) of our constitutionally guaranteed rights and freedoms. Watch out for PC!

  • Ron

    This is much ado about nothing! The Teacher is a PUBLIC employee and posted something publicly that may have violated the ethics agreement he VOLUNTARILY agreed to as a condition of his employment. It was investigated and since he did not exhibit it to his students it was deemed not a violation of policy and he was re-instated. Happens everyday in this country in both private and public places of employment, except the difference is that in the private sector they most likely would have fired him to avoid dealing with it!

    Don’t like Heterosexual marriage? Then don’t have one!
    Don’t like gay marriage? Then don’t have one!

    That was easy!

    • rider237

      have an opinion on either? keep your mouth shut.

    • Ron

      Ron,

      I agree with you that the teacher voluntarily agreed to the conditions of employment and how the issue was resolved. The author’s contention was not about the resolution but whether a stating an opininion based on a religious belief regarding marriage is “hate speech”. It seems to me that it does not qualify as hate speech and that if it does, the definition of hate speech is now so broad that it has lost meaning.

    • Habib

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  • flanoggin

    I agree that we should all have free speech and I am glad Buell was not fired, as much as I thoroughly disagree with his viewpoints. However, I do find it somewhat disingenuous of the author that she judges many things to be disturbing, but not one’s religious views regarding homosexuality. Kind of cherry picking, isn’t it? Slavery is only (historically) disturbing relatively recently—it was perfectly fine when in existence and biblically defended. Just wondering.

    • rider237

      not to speak for the author, but i think the point might have been that different opinions are great and protected, as long as they are not conservative/religious opinions. would the same have happened if the teacher had posted on FB supporting gay marriage?

      any of us who have taken a conservative position to a liberal, have experienced “tolerance” at the top of the lungs of the lib. or ALL CAPS in a response to a post. :-)

      i have the great honor to have made every list from racist, to terrorist, and whatever is in between!

      • Luke

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  • Paul

    Yes, a verbal war against certain PEOPLE because of who they are is indeed hate speech. This person had a history of speaking against GAY PEOPLE. This isn’t what Christ taught, so he’s not a “Christian”. He is religious. Unfortunately, his religion teaches bigotry.

  • Ron

    Luckily, sanity prevailed and Mr. Buell was reinstated. Hasn’t there been a general coarsening of dialogue in our society. It seems like it is no longer to disagree with another view. We now have to demonize the opposition. We now question the motives of the opposition. It seems to be concentrated in both parties in Congress today. How much of political debate is now sloganeering (if there is such a word). For the last several months every Democrat seems to now say that Congress needs to put country first instead of party. On the other hand, according to Republicans every taxpayer is a job creator and every Democrat is a tax and spender. No wonder so many Americans tune out the political debate.