Dec 17, 2009
Anti-gay hate group wants the state to forfeit $400 million if state protects bullying
LANSING -- The Michigan Legislature is burning the midnight oil on Thursday evening and Friday morning to enact the "Race to the Top" package of bills that will position Michigan to receive up to $400 million in federal funds through President Barack Obama's "Race to the Top" program that requires states to enact major reforms to receive the funds.
However, the anti-gay hate AFA of Michigan spent Thursday afternoon instructing their members to bombard lawmaker’s office over possible language in the bills that will require schools to adopt a policy that prohibits harassment or bullying at school, as well as prohibiting the harmful and potentially deadly bullying from telecommunications devices. Somehow, the homophobes are upset because it extends protection to students who may be gay.
The disgusting letters come directly from an AFA press release. Chief homophobe Gary Glenn said his group is "hopeful that Republican state senators won’t allow themselves to be bullied by homosexual activist groups and House Democrats into caving in on this matter of principle in hopes of a payoff from federal tax dollars being dangled by the Obama Administration."
The Race to the Top package does a number of things. It would expand the number of charter schools by allowing current charter school operators to open new charter schools, provide a path for alternative teacher certification and it stipulates that districts with at least 25 percent of their students in the lowest achieving 5 percent of buildings in the state would be run by a CEO appointed by the state superintendent.
Separate versions passed the House and Senate earlier thinks month, and a conference committee consisting if three members of the Senate and three from the House are meeting to reconcile the two versions and come up with a compromise. Once that happens, each body will give it an up or down vote. There can be no amendments or substitutes, and if rejected the bills are dead.
Negotiations have been on and off most of the day, and they are expected to go into the early morning hours.
Apparently, the AFA is claiming language in House-passed version is similar to Matt’s Law. So, if it remains in the conference report, the AFA wants us to miss out on $400 million just because we want to protect gays from violence? That’s simply disgusting.
Matt's Safe School Law is named after Matt Epling, a popular East Lansing middle school student who committed suicide as a result of bullying in school, and it would require public school districts in Michigan to establish bullying policies. It has passed the House with bipartisan support, but the Senate refuses to take it up.