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Shocker: Most parents don't want sexuality taught in Kindergarten, even in Blue states.

The Washington Post and the ‘Anti-Trans’ Slur

Blue-state parents also want a say in education.

James Freeman, WSJ

Updated May 8, 2023 2:42 pm ET


Florida parents aren’t the only ones who don’t want a government employee talking to their 8-year-olds about sex. You’d never know it from much national media coverage, but this issue has great resonance far beyond the Sunshine State.


“Let parents reject politicized instruction in NJ schools” is the headline on an editorial in the Press of Atlantic City, which notes:


A recent Stockton University poll confirmed what had been strongly suggested by events of the past year or so: Two-thirds of New Jersey parents want more say over what their children are taught in school.


Parents in many school districts have sprung into action in response to state orders to start instructing grade school students in such politically divisive and personal issues as sexual identity and gender diversity. A few months into the pandemic, the administration of Gov. Phil Murphy quietly ordered schools to instruct kindergarten through 12 students in chosen views about gender and sexual orientation.


The Stockton poll found that adults in the blue Garden State overwhelmingly agree with adults in other states that kindergarten is not a place where adults should be initiating discussions on sexuality.


Stockton posed a series of questions this way to the adults of New Jersey:


Assuming they are addressed in an age-appropriate way, please identify in what grade level each of the following topics should be introduced, if at all:


On the topic of “Gender identity and sexuality” only 12% said it should be introduced in “Elementary (grades K-4).” So even in this blue Northeast state, an overwhelming majority say they don’t want the subject introduced before middle school and a full 21% of Garden Staters say their preference is “Never.”


In the sloppy radicalism that passes for much of contemporary media, parents’ reasonable desire to oversee such instruction is often miscast as some sort of bigotry, even when media outlets admit that such views are held by most of their readers.


Now along comes a Washington Post report under this headline:


Most Americans support anti-trans policies favored by GOP, poll shows


But of course it’s not just the GOP and the use of the term “anti-trans” is highly tendentious. One can show respect and compassion to all people while, for example, rejecting more power for government-run schools to encourage kids to make life-altering decisions.


The Post’s Laura Meckler and Scott Clement write about a Washington Post-KFF poll with the unsurprising finding that most people regard gender as determined at birth. No doubt many of the respondents understand the consequences if they stop saying what they believe under pressure from the progressive left. The Posties report:


While a majority of Americans oppose access to puberty blockers and hormone treatments for children and teenagers, for instance, clear majorities also support laws prohibiting discrimination against trans people, including in K-12 schools.


Sounds like a tolerant and appropriately careful approach to the issue. So what exactly does it mean for a policy to be labelled by the media as “anti-trans”? Opposing gender reassignment surgeries on children and seeking to maintain competitive balance in girls’ sports both seem to qualify. Most Americans reasonably view such positions as pro-child. The Posties report:


Even among young adults, who are the most accepting of trans identity, about half said in the Post-KFF poll that a person’s gender is determined by their sex at birth.


Alyssa Wells, 29, a behavior therapist in Daytona Beach, Fla., who participated in the Post-KFF survey, said her views have changed on this issue in recent years as she has learned more, chiefly from Christian podcasts.


“At first I was on the side of acceptance, like using the pronouns and stuff, because I want people to be kind to each other. I don’t want people fighting all the time,” she said. But she has come to see things differently. “My concern with transgender is mostly with the children.”


“We can’t vote until we’re a certain age, we can’t smoke, drink or whatever, but we can change our bodies’ anatomy and how it works?” she said. “It just doesn’t seem like that’s okay to me.”


One hardly needs to listen to Christian podcasts to hold this view.


***

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