Thursday, April 15, 2010

Day of Truth? Maybe Not.

Today is the Day of Truth, a day organized by Exodus International to attempt to upstage tomorrow's Day of Silence, organized by GLSEN. Sorry, I mean (according to the DOT website), "to have an honest conversation about relationships, sexuality, and faith." But, come on, they have specifically chosen to have this day the day before Day of Silence every year. You get the idea. Believe what you will about the Day of Truth. I'm of the opinion that its mission is to upstage the DOS, but maybe that's just me. And, that's not really the point of this post.


The reason behind this post is to point out how the Day of Truth is not all about Truth. Here's why: In the FAQ section of their website (under the "What is the Day of Silence Section), the DOT claims, "Unlike the Day of Silence, the Day of Truth does not encourage students to engage in activities that are likely to disrupt the school’s academic mission."


Right, so this event's goal isn't to upstage the Day of Silence, yet they insist on spreading misinformation about the DOS. This statement is pretty easy to refute, and I've brought it to the attention of Exodus and the Day of Truth through emails (one each) and through a blog post on Exodus' blog, which was not approved for posting.


So, for those of you that are curious, here's what the Day of Silence has to say about students disrupting a school's academic mission (from their FAQs):


From the "Do I have a right to participate in the Day of Silence?" section:
"You DO have a right to participate in Day of Silence and other expressions of your opinion at a public school during non-instructional time: the breaks between classes, before and after the school day, lunchtime, and any other free times during your day. You do NOT have a right to remain silent during class time if a teacher asks you to speak. We recommend that you talk to your teachers ahead of time, tell them what you plan to do, and ask them if it would be okay for you to communicate on that day in writing. (ACLU)"


From the "How do the Day of Silence activities affect the school day?" section:
"GLSEN advises students interested in participating to discuss their intentions with their administration and teachers long before the event. The day is most successful when schools and students work together to show their commitment to ensuring safe schools for all students. Many schools allow students’ participation throughout the day. Some schools ask students to speak as they normally would during class and remain silent during breaks and at lunch. There is no single way to participate, and students are encouraged to take part in the way that is the most positive and uplifting for their school. Students may also participate in “Breaking the Silence” rallies, events at which students come together at the day’s end to express themselves and share their experiences with members of their local communities."

In fact, the FAQ even offers a pdf file for students whose schools will not allow them to participate in the DOS that offers other ways they can contribute.

Pretty disappointing that with an event called the Day of Truth, Exodus and the Day of Truth organizers can be truthful, especially when they've been shown where the problems are.

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