Calif. First Graders ‘Indoctrinated’ in Visit to Same-Sex Wedding, Critics Say

By Mary Jane O’Brien | October 15, 2008 | 6:53 PM EDT

(AP Photo)

( – Nearly five months after California’s Supreme Court issued a decision creating same-sex marriage, a class of first graders was the first to be officially exposed to a same-sex marriage ceremony in San Francisco.
It’s a move that some say is “indoctrination.”
Eighteen 5- and 6-year-olds from San Francisco’s Creative Arts Charter School were taken to San Francisco City Hall Monday, where they tossed rose petals and blew bubbles on their lesbian teacher, Erin Carder, after she “married” another woman, Kerri McCoy, in a ceremony presided over by San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom.
The “field trip,” which was the brainchild of an unnamed parent, was approved by Creative Arts Charter School director Liz Jaroslow, who did not return phone calls from by press time.
Jaroslow reportedly told the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper that she justified the trip educationally, because, she said, “(I)t really is what we call a teachable moment.”
Supporters of Proposition 8, a California initiative on the ballot this fall that would overturn the same-sex marriage ruling, were appalled.
Chip White, press secretary for the Yes on 8 Campaign, told in a phone interview that this field trip came at the same time that opponents of Proposition 8 are running ads calling proponents “liars” for informing Californians about the consequences to public school kids.
“The other side claims that we’re lying (when we say) that same-sex marriage will be taught in schools. This field trip shows not only will same-sex marriage be taught in schools, but it already is being taught in schools,” he said.
Proposition 8, if adopted, would amend California’s Constitution to say: “Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.”
“This shows that homosexual ‘marriages’ are designed not just to gain public approval of the homosexual lifestyle, but designed to indoctrinate children to be ‘better’ than their ‘bigoted elders,’” Randy Thomasson, president and founder of the non-profit Campaign for Children and Families, told
“‘Get them while they’re young’ is the goal of homosexual activists, and they’re succeeding in San Francisco,” he added. “Now parents and grandparents have a vivid example from San Francisco of how children are already being indoctrinated to support homosexual marriage and see this as an acceptable ‘relationship’ based on ‘love,’” Thomasson told
Section 51890 of the California education code (§51890), which deals with “comprehensive health education” requires public school teachers to teach all children, including kindergartners, about marriage.
If Proposition 8 fails, proponents say, five-year-olds will learn that there is no difference between same-sex and traditional marriages.
Public reaction to the incident may be affecting support for the proposition, however, according to polling numbers and financial contributions, according to White.
“The past week and a half has really been a kind of momentum for the ‘Yes on 8’ campaign,” he said.
Citing recent public polling numbers for CBS News gathered by SurveyUSA, White said that support for Proposition 8 had risen by 10 points in the last 11 days, with polling numbers currently showing 47 percent of Californians supporting the proposition, compared with 42 percent against.
“Additionally,” White said, “the ‘No on 8’ side, in an unusual move, released their internal poll to the Los Angeles Times. It also showed the ‘yes’ side in the lead.”
Campaign contributions show similar support. In the most recent filing of contribution reports with the California Secretary of State, proponents listed more than 5,000 pages of contributions.
“We ended up with 62,000 donors, showing that for the last reporting period,” White said, adding that proponents have raised about $25 million.
The ‘No on 8’ Campaign currently has amassed slightly less than $16 million, despite reports that highly visible Hollywood celebrities such as Brad Pitt and Steven Spielberg had donated $100,000 each to this campaign.
When asked if many celebrities were contributing to the ‘Yes on 8’ campaign, White told that the initiative campaign is garnering the bulk of its support from “regular” Californians “from every corner of California.”
“Folks are contributing to ‘Yes on 8’ who have never contributed to a political campaign before in their lives,” White said.
Despite repeated attempts, phone calls by to the San Francisco Unified School District, Liz Jaroslow, the Creative Arts Charter School and Equality California (the ‘No on 8’ Campaign) were not returned.