Indoctrination, Yes

Standard

While I am obviously pissed at Queerty for its constant assertions that Minneapolis queer culture is somehow less than San Francisco queer culture, I agree with one of yesterday’s posts about indoctrinating children. The basic argument of the post can be summarized as follows:

They accuse us of exploiting children and in response we say, “NOOO! We’re not gonna make kids learn about homosexuality, we swear! It’s not like we’re trying to recruit your children or anything.” But let’s face it—that’s a lie. We want educators to teach future generations of children to accept queer sexuality. In fact, our very future depends on it.

and,

I and a lot of other people want to indoctrinate, recruit, teach, and expose children to queer sexuality AND THERE’S NOTHING WRONG WITH THAT. Hell, our opponents even do the same…Anti-gay opponents are already unabashedly indoctrinating our children with the church and conservative politicians on their side and they make no bones about it.

Combine this with Foucault,

[One] thing to distrust is the tendency to relate the question of homosexuality to the problem of “Who am I?” and “What is the secret of my desire?” Perhaps it would be better to ask oneself, “What relations, through homosexuality, can be established, invented, multiplied, and modulated?” The problem is not to discover in oneself the truth of one’s sex, but, rather, to use one’s sexuality henceforth to arrive at a multiplicity of relationships. …. The development toward which homosexuality tends is one of friendship (“Friendship as a Way of Life,” Ethics: Subjectivity and Truth, 135-6).

I agree absolutely with Queerty, we need to be honest that we are attempting to teach and expose children to queer sexualities and queer cultural practices. I wrote a lot in my one semester as a graduate student about the moral worth of queer sexualities and cultures. This Foucault quote was one of my mantras throughout the semester, particularly his statement about the “use of sexuality henceforth to arrive at a multiplicity of relationships.” Queerness is a way of life, one that, while sometimes intersecting with the heterosexual matrix, contests the cultural norms of our society. Queerness is a Midrash on cultural norms and practices. I’m okay with that. I want future generations to have a critical lens and I want them to learn the beauty and power of queer culture.

As a side note, I agree that we need to be conscious about pointing out how the theocratic Right employs indoctrination. It is something that many people rarely do when engaging, if one can actually engage, with the theocratic Right. Politics of truth, right?

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