The Article I Didn't Want to Write

There are times when you just can’t wait! Too much coffee and the washroom is never close enough or conveniently located. And, once you finally get to the washroom, the one you need (male or female) is in use. In situations like this it’s probable that you wouldn’t hesitate to enter into the opposite gender’s washroom and lock the door.

Perhaps that wouldn’t be a problem in the near future because gender specific washrooms may soon only be found in museums (I may be exaggerating). If you’ve read the news recently you’ve noticed that there seems to be a push by various groups (including our provincial government) to make gender specific washrooms obsolete. And that’s only part of it!

In January of this year Education Minister David Eggen announced new guidelines for public schools concerning student choice in washrooms, sports teams and pronouns. For example, a female student may choose to be referred to as a male if this is their personal preference (despite their biological reality).

These new guidelines will lead to fundamental changes in the way children are educated in Alberta. How will our education system, bent on blurring our God-given gender differences, deal with a male student who prefers to compete as a female on a girls team and prefers to use the female change room after practice?

I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in believing that this new direction to be a bad idea. What disturbs me is that the parental responsibility and authority for their own children is being systematically eroded. Who is ultimately responsible for a child’s education? What do you think? Their own parents or the state?

I do understand that those who are supporting this educational move believe they are acting in the best interest of those students that feel unwelcome or even bullied. The fact is, however, that there is already legislation and policy in place to protect students that may be different or who choose an alternative life-style.

What about the little shy kid that is traumatized by someone of the opposite sex coming in to use the washroom? Will there be a teacher in the washrooms supervising all the time? Will a window have to be installed so that what happens in the washrooms can be observed from the outside? Insurance requires this in our church Sunday School rooms!

I certainly agree that all children should be treated with love and respect. After all, they are all created in the image of God. I agree that there is no place for bullying in Alberta schools. I understand the immense challenges in educating children that come from many traditions, religions, and nationalities. I have to believe that these guidelines are presented in good faith.

However, when legislation is presented in the name of tolerance that is intolerant of parents with moral, religious, and safety concerns for their children ... well, this creates a serious problem. In trying so hard to prevent bullying, they themselves are seen as bullies pushing their agenda.

The Bible tells us to “defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed” (Psalm 82:3). How can you do this? One way is to let your voice be heard. I encourage you to email, phone, or write a letter to the Education minister and/or your MLA sharing your thoughts concerning the new guidelines for education in Alberta.