March 24, 2015

EXCLUSIVE: Edmonton Islamic Academy stonewalls on Gay Straight Alliance questions; gets $6 million/year from taxpayers

Josh SkurnikRebel Correspondent

Gay Straight Alliances (GSAs) will soon be mandatory in every Alberta school. But will that include Muslim institutions, where (as you'll see) attitudes about homosexuality aren't always tolerant?

I repeatedly tried to find out how the Edmonton Islamic Academy -- which has a history of homophobia -- plans to handle this new requirement this fall.

What do you think:

Should GSAs be mandatory?

Or should religious schools be exempt?


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Comments
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commented 2015-03-25 10:49:06 -0400
To Luisa Cisterna “My kids are MINE” once you register and receive a birth certificate your children belong to the government – check it out…
commented 2015-03-25 10:41:34 -0400
Muslims, nor any other religious group for that matter should be exam-ted.
commented 2015-03-25 10:35:39 -0400
This article misstates the facts. GSAs will not be mandatory; if some students want one, the school must allow it. What’s the likelihood that students at a Muslim school will form a GSA?
commented 2015-03-25 10:25:12 -0400
Marie, I likewise appreciate Maurice’s thoughtful bang-on analysis. His reference to “hating” that word, “homophobic”, made me chuckle.
In a post with respect to an earlier (March 22) TheRebel.Media post, “Broadcaster: Those ‘spearheading’ opposition to new Ontario se-ed curriculum are ‘rooted in homophobia’, Levin ‘had nothing to do with’ its contents”, I pointed out that “A lot of things, such as, one’s sexual identity, seem fluid in today’s ‘progressive’ world, even the meaning of words”. According to the Mayo Clinic, “a phobia is an overwhelming and unreasonable fear of an object or situation that poses little real danger but provokes anxiety and avoidance”. With that understanding, try to make sense of the words “homophobia” and the new kid on the block “Islamophobia”. Rather than engage in a discussion of facts, the ‘progressives’ often resort to simply labeling and stigmatizing those with whom they disagree. It is a smokescreen, a reframing of the dialogue so as to, in fact, shut down dialogue.
commented 2015-03-25 10:22:54 -0400
STILL can’t figure out HOW less than 2% of the population (non-heterosexuals) wound up RUNNING 98% of the Population. Are Canadians THAT ‘weak’ in the brain?
commented 2015-03-25 10:19:14 -0400
if they don’t get deported,they will soon run our country.Why should our tax payers fund them when all they are here for is to harass us?If they don’t like Canadians,they have no business living here
commented 2015-03-25 10:04:35 -0400
Maurice Potvin!!! GREAT COMMENT!! HURRAY!! Agree, agree and agree. And here we go again, even The Rebel using the magic word: Homophobic. TIRED of this. Believing homosexuality should be an issue for the bedroom not the boardroom or the classroom for that matter doesn’t make anyone homophobic. My kids are MINE! How difficult is it for the government to understand this simple fact of life??
commented 2015-03-25 03:09:50 -0400
I was no fan of former Prime Minister, Pierre Trudeau, but one thing he said that I completely agree with was “The government has no place in the bedrooms of the Nation.” That should apply at all levels of government, including provincial education ministries. Although I’m sure this isn’t a sentiment his less intelligent son would agree with, never the less, schools should stick to teaching the basics of education; math, science, etc. Leave the moral values and religious teaching in the hands of the parents. They must have the right to their beliefs, and the option of sending their children to faith-based schools if they so desire….. as long as in doing so they do not teach values that infringe upon the rights and freedoms of anyone else. This sexual indoctrination garbage; sexual indoctrination of any kind!!! Well, it’s just none of the government’s damned business!!! Everyone has the right to hold their beliefs and opinions as sacred, and they must also have the right to express those opinions and beliefs, as long as in doing so they do not promote violence or compromise public safety. Like I say, as long as don’t infringe upon the rights of anyone else. (By the way, “not being offended” is not a right). It doesn’t matter whether I, or you, or anyone else finds those opinions or religious beliefs odious. They may be extremely offensive from our perspective. The answer to offensive ideas is better ideas, not the silencing of opinions that we don’t agree with. Let us, and all parents sort it out for ourselves! We’re not invalids; we’re not unruly children; and we don’t need the government micro-manage every aspect of our private and family lives!! So, Governments, keep you damned nose out of our sex life!!! By the way, I agree with the comments about the tone of Josh Skurnik’s report. Using terms like “homophobia” is more than just a bit condescending. I hate that word, “homophobic”! You can’t use it without being guilty of the very thing it accuses others of; self-righteous intolerance of other points of view. That’s too bad, I generally appreciate Josh’s reporting.
commented 2015-03-25 01:46:33 -0400
The real question is not whether Muslim schools will cooperate with this law. The real question is how such an idea actually became the law in the land of the free. Parents forming a Christian school to inculcate Christian values, for instance, cannot be compelled to allow for a gay club on their school campus anymore than they can be compelled to have a pro-abortion club or a support group for those who prefer to do it with animals. To force Christians or Muslims to provide a platform and encouragement for what they consider to be sinful and immoral is to negate the very notion of choice and freedom. Such arrogant law-making is, in fact, inviting a revolution.
commented 2015-03-24 21:26:52 -0400
Wayne and Jack, as you correctly point out, and as I posted when this item was first introduced earlier in the day, “The possible out for Muslim schools is that the GSAs are to be set up ‘upon the request of students’. Would any Muslim students even dare to make such a request?”
Frankly, I found this report, previously hyped up as “an explosive investigation”, to be “much ado about nothing”.
Peter, as you note, “any non-public school, whether it receives funding from the government or not…should be able to teach according to their beliefs. Forcing people to accept what is clearly against their faith when that acceptance has no bearing on the education of the student should not be allowed. This should apply to all schools that teach a faith”. École Libre I agree with you, “Given that…GSAs should not be mandatory anywhere, how could this be a scandal?” “An explosive investigation?” I also share your concern about TheRebel.media seemingly adopting a politically-correct posture which severely limits freedom. Peter, unlike you, I detected a slant in Josh’s monologue. He begins by talking about the school having “a history of homophobia”, thereby using a term , “homophobia”, the left uses to bludgeon people to conform to their point of view. As far as the so-called “history” at the school, we have as sole evidence the distasteful comments of a teacher who is no longer at the school. He makes a point that as a private school it receives $6 million a year as if that should justify the state restricting religious freedom. Take note of the title for his monologue, that the school “stonewalls” on GSA questions with the implication that is unacceptable considering that it “gets $6 million/year from taxpayers”. As the audio from Liberal Kent Hehr points out “whether they take a public stand or not” (which Josh was pushing as part of his so-called “explosive investigation”) “is irrelevant”.

What is unknown or forgotten in all this is something more important to consider than whether or not the EIA is prepared to make a “public commitment” on GSAs. The passed legislation (Bill 10), apart from requiring all (public, private, and faith-based) schools, upon the request of students, to set up GSAs, also strips from the Human Rights Act a provision giving parents the right to remove their children from classroom discussions of “subject matter that deals primarily and explicitly with religion, human sexuality or sexual orientation", thereby adding a state-imposed social-engineering dimension.
commented 2015-03-24 21:19:24 -0400
École & James: You guys are mis-reading this. The only thing being forced is accommodation. The law says a school must allow these groups, if one is requested by a student or group of students. Not that it has to happen, whether anyone wants one or not. So the schools simply have to accommodate the students, which is pretty much the way it is already in pretty much every other aspect of life in schools today. But if nobody in a school asks for it, it’s not like the school has to start indoctrinating straight students to turn them gay to justify a group. They just have to allow it to happen, if the students feel they need it. I don’t have a problem with it, and eagerly await witnessing the knots the muslim community is going to have to tie itself into regarding this matter. Good investigative work, here.
commented 2015-03-24 20:59:03 -0400
I don’t think there should be any law about it. If the students want it, then they get it. No matter what school. But at most Catholic schools, there are not many gay students, so it all depends on numbers
commented 2015-03-24 20:29:10 -0400
It seems that the “gay” portion of society must be professional lobbiests to push their agenda into all aspects of the community, schools are no exception. Someone’s sexual orientation should be a private matter, not something to be used as a basis to form a group or club in a school. On a side note, in my humble opinion, no government funding should go to any religious oriented school. Whether it be Roman Catholic as in ontario or islamic schools in alberta… Public funding for public schools and stick to the three R’s… kids today seem very uneducated when they finish high school (and have attitudes). In this computer age / cable tv age kids can learn about anything with the click of a mouse.
commented 2015-03-24 20:18:22 -0400
I think all schools, including all religious schools, should teach the ideas listed in this article by Ayaan Hirsi Ali because Islam needs reform. Despite what you may think about the GSA groups, we do not condone the shariah solution that hangs or throws off tall buildings those accused of homosexuality. Ours is a loving, inclusive value and society.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/a-reformation-for-islam-1426859626?tesla=y
commented 2015-03-24 20:02:05 -0400
This really isn’t even an issue – it says GSA’s will be made available in all schools where kids want them. If you’re the Muslim kid asking for a GSA at your Muslim religious school how far do you think you will get? 1) parents are called and they beat the gay out of you. 2) Imam is called and he beats the gay out of you 3) If 1 and 2 don’t work you are 1) sent to fight for ISIS under the guise of being sent to relatives in the Middle East 2) become a victim of an honour killing or 3) end up in public school
Basically there will never be a request for a GSA in a Muslim Faith based school so no worries about losing funding – because the kids have to want one for the requirement to kick in.
commented 2015-03-24 19:59:14 -0400
Does anyone think that an Islamic school will allow its students to “want” a GSA? And this assumes that any Muslim student would have the nerve to admit their homosexuality in the first place much less have the temerity to demand a GSA.
commented 2015-03-24 19:24:06 -0400
I agree with ecole libre. Government should not be enforcing this type of programs in school. Its at a point now where everything is a rule or a law, a can do or can’t do…in that the government bureaucracy has its dirty little fingers wiggling into all of our lives. Personally I would like to see more bureaucrats on employment insurance and a much smaller government. I did not see the burka or niqab in the video but I have a solution for the face covering dilemma. Another small level of bureaucracy should be established to give licensing to those wearing the anti-women garb. Much like Auto licensing or Dog licensing. One year at $1200 which would also provide insurance against injury due to collisions or husband beatings. Premiums would escalate dramatically if Burkas are worn in government offices, 7/11 Confectioneries, Banks, Jewelry Stores, Escalators, security lines, schools, and protests (Similar to dangerous driving or dog off leash). All subject to huge fines and/or imprisonment.
commented 2015-03-24 19:22:03 -0400
If any non-public school, whether it receives funding from the government or not, is teaches all the basics, reading, writing, math, science, history, and social studies up to the provincial standards, then they should be able to teach according to their beliefs. Forcing people to accept what is clearly against their faith when that acceptance has no bearing on the education of the student should not be allowed. This should apply to all schools that teach a faith.

To ÉCOLE LIBRE: I did not see in Josh’s monologue where he stated that he supported or did not support the decision to force the school into accepting Gay Straight Alliances. He just reported the issue. Josh is a correspondent, not a commentator like Ezra or Brian, who specifically and intentionally provide their opinions. So to assign to TheRebel.Media that they have the opinion to restrict freedom of speech is premature, until they state it explicitly.
commented 2015-03-24 19:17:31 -0400
This type of garbage has no place in any classroom anywhere in Canada. Schools should only teach the fundamentals, the rest can be explored out side of the school. It is bad enough we hardly even teach kids anymore. To keep pushing this sexuality agenda ,whether gay or straight, has nothing to do with educating our youth. Cudos to any school who fights this agenda off.
commented 2015-03-24 19:08:06 -0400
This is a no brainer “Sure we will support a GSA”…“Now will any students that wish to form a GSA in our muslim school please stand up?” …does everyone have their stones ready?
commented 2015-03-24 18:45:05 -0400
Given that I believe that GSAs should not be mandatory anywhere, how could this be a scandal ?

Why do you believe Rebel Media do you conform with the politically correct agenda which severely limits freedom ?
commented 2015-03-24 18:31:50 -0400
Keep poking around Josh! We deserve to know if they implement and if not can funding be pulled. With us having a huge deficit, cutting funds to these groups should be a no brainer.