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"Marysia’s elementary school used to provide a safe atmosphere. This was the case until vulgar LGBT activists started to advance their scandalous agenda without the knowledge or consent of parents" – warns the narrator in an animated video shared by Ordo Iuris, Poland’s most notorious Catholic fundamentalist organization whose members enjoy direct access to some of the top government officials. The animation depicts frightened children standing among people holding rainbow flags and banners with slogans: "Masturbation unlocks creativity", "Porn isn’t evil, it’s great", and "Homosexuality is OK".
The video is part of the organization’s back-to-school "awareness" campaign targeting parents. "With the start of a new school year, many parents may be concerned about what is being taught to their children. Therefore, the Ordo Iuris Institute is providing materials to help parents realize that they have a constitutional right to raise their children in accordance with their beliefs" – we read on the group’s website.
Among other materials, Ordo Iuris prepared a "know your rights" factsheet, as well as a guide instructing parents on "how to stop vulgar sex education at school". There is also a template for parents to express their lack of consent for sex education classes, as well as the introduction of concepts such as "cultural" or "social" gender, gender identity, equality, tolerance, diversity, or violence in the context of sexual relations and sexual orientation.
Later in the video, we hear that such classes can be taught to children by "LGBT activists". "When the student's parents found out about it, they began to seek help to protect their daughter from psychologically damaging content" – the narrator explains.
We further learn that thanks to the institute's actions, parents were able to oppose "an ideological event at school", and the school could "resist the violent pressure of LGBT activists". As a result, Ordo Iuris argues, "the children’s innocence was protected".
The Catholic fundamentalist organization argues that "the guide shows how parents can enforce their rights in schools and kindergartens. Among other things, it describes the role of parent-teacher councils. It also outlines the procedure that must be fulfilled in order for an NGO to visit a school" - the announcement reads. However, in both the video and the written guide there is no mention of the general rules guiding school and NGO advocacy related to topics other than LGBTQ rights. The organization’s entire activity centers around "protecting" children from being "groomed by LGBTQ ideology".
It is not the first time that Ordo Iuris is targeting the LGBTQ community. Nor is it its first "awareness campaign" aimed at a specific societal group. Recently, the organization released a "Stop the Death Pill" guidebook to help authorities effectively prosecute medical abortions.
Arguments advanced in the organization’s homophobic campaigns mirror the rhetoric of the American right meant to smear and vilify the LGBTQ community. Claiming that LGBTQ activists are "grooming" or "sexualizing" children by pushing their "agenda" in schools, some of the more radical Republican politicians try to rally public opinion against LGBTQ people and introduce homophobic legislation on local and state levels. Such homophobic laws are perhaps best exemplified by the Parental Rights in Education bill signed into law by the Republican governor of Florida Ron DeSantis. Critics are calling the law the "Don’t Say Gay" bill, as it effectively limits discussions about LGBTQ issues at school.
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