Saturday, April 22, 2006


Jail bosses are rebuilding toilets so Muslim inmates don't have to use them while facing Mecca. Thousands of pounds of taxpayers money are being spent to ensure lags are not offended. The Islamic religion prohibits Muslims from facing or turning their backs on the Kiblah - the direction of prayer - when they visit the lav. Muslim lags claimed they have had to sit sideways on prison WCs. But after pressure from faith leaders the Home Office has agreed to turn the existing toilets 90 degrees at HMP Brixton in London. The Home Office refused to reveal the cost of the new facilities - part of an "on-going refurbishment".

One Muslim former inmate said: "The least the Prison Service can do is make sure people can practise their religion correctly in prison." But a Brixton jail officer said: "If they didn't get locked up for committing crime they would not have this problem. Yet we have to sort out their loos. If we weren't paying for it as taxpayers I'd laugh my socks off." Around a quarter of prisoners at the Category B jail are Muslims.

Labour MP Khalid Mahmood said: "As far as I understand this rule only applies in a place of worship." Tory MP Ann Widdecombe said: "Some common sense needs to be applied."



Lexington public school officials have told Rob and Robin Wirthlin that since "gay marriage is legal" they may describe homosexual relationships to their son in second grade, without notice, and that parents may not opt their child out of such discussions. The Wirthlins are livid.

On March 24, their second-grade son came home from the Estabrook Elementary School and repeated to his mother the story read to him earlier that day about men getting married to each other. His teacher had read the book "King and King" to the class, in which a prince doesn't want to marry any princesses, but instead falls in love with a princess's brother and marries him in a big palace wedding. The Wirthlins immediately contacted the teacher, Heather Kramer, who acknowledged she had read the book to the class, and admitted that it was not part of the curriculum.

Several days later, the Wirthlins met with the teacher and principal, Joni Jay, to discuss the matter. Kramer told them that the theme of the day was "weddings" and that since "gay marriage is legal," she wanted to present all points of view. Jay told the Wirthlins that they cannot opt their son out of these discussions, and no notice will be given, and that she cannot guarantee it will not happen again. She added that has no plans even to inform parents after the fact that such incidents have taken place.

"We are outraged," said Mrs. Wirthlin. "This is a highly charged social issue. Why are they introducing it in the second grade? And we cannot present our family's point of view to our children if they don't tell us what they're saying to them." The emails between the Wirthlins and school officials can be read here

According to other parents in the school, Kramer attended a presentation last year by the Gay Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN) on promoting homosexuality in the classroom. Lexington school officials continue to claim that homosexuality and homosexual relationships do not does not constitute "human sexual relationships" [!!!!!] and thus do not trigger the Massachusetts parental notification law - Ch. 73 Sec. 32a.

Joni Jay and Estabrook Elementary School were in the news last year when David Parker, father of a kindergartner, spent the night in jail over notification of discussions of homosexuality, bisexuality, and transgenderism in his son's class.

Source. Another report on the same story here

No comments: