May 2005 – While claiming that it never intended to push homosexuality through its music video campaign, the We Are Family Foundation (WAFF) nevertheless removed pro-homosexual content from its Web site following an exposé by AFA Journal. WAFF also apparently removed references to same-sex families in a teacher’s guide that was later mailed out to elementary schools.
WAFF announced the campaign last November, stating that it had produced a new music video for children based on the 1970s pop hit, “We Are Family.” Using the voices and images of over 100 characters from children’s television, a DVD version of the music video was created to promote a message of tolerance and diversity.
The DVD and accompanying teacher’s guide was mailed to the nation’s 61,000 public and private elementary schools, most of which received the packages March 11.
However, in an article which appeared in the January AFA Journal, the pro-homosexual content on WAFF’s Web site was made public. Following the uproar that resulted, much of the controversial material was removed. The site was later completely revamped and the rest of the materials were deleted.
Moreover, the DVD’s companion teacher’s guide that arrived in schools also apparently underwent a slight renovation. According to MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann, an earlier version of the teacher’s guide – which Olbermann said he reviewed – contained three references to same-sex parents. The final version of the guide had purged those references.
“This was simply an example of AFA shining a spotlight on something very troubling, and letting the resulting controversy bring needed correction,” said AFA Chairman Don Wildmon. “Obviously the We Are Family Foundation didn’t like being on the hot seat, and we’re gratified that it removed the materials.”
Non-traditional view of family
Even with the references to same-sex families expunged, however, AFA still had some problems with the content of the most recent teacher’s guide.
Titled We Are Family: A Musical Message for All, the pamphlet contains ideas for discussions once the elementary school children have finished watching the music video. However, the guide distorted the definition of family to produce a nontraditional model that, in AFA’s opinion, is meant to include homosexual couples.
For example, A Musical Message instructs teachers to ask children “to share ideas on whom they think can be found in a family.” But if kids merely give what the teacher’s guide calls “traditional answers,” the teacher is encouraged to “[a]sk further questions.”
The goal of such discussions, according to A Musical Message, is for children to be brought to the conclusion “that many types of people come together as a family and what binds them together is love, sharing, and caring.”
Wildmon agreed that families certainly should demonstrate love, sharing and caring, and furthermore that those sentiments are often extended to non-family members who are close enough that they “feel just like a member of the family.”
“But WAFF’s definition is simply not accurate,” Wildmon said. “A family, as traditionally defined, is a group of people related by blood, marriage or adoption. What this teacher’s guide does is attempt to artificially expand the definition of family.
“I believe their primary reason for expanding the definition of family beyond the traditional model is to include homosexual couples.”
In fact, some in the homosexual community wanted the music video to be used for that express purpose. For example, after school officials in Palm Beach County, Florida, balked at showing the video to the district’s 129 elementary schools, a local activist was incensed.
According to the Palm Beach Post, Tony Plakas, president of the county’s “gay” and lesbian community center, said, “We have children every day that experience this kind of discrimination. We can’t say, ‘No, we’re not going to talk about it.’”
Wildmon said activists and others sympathetic to the homosexual agenda should leave elementary schools out of it.
“We will continue to vehemently oppose that effort,” he said. “While homosexuals can certainly love children as deeply as heterosexuals, we believe that the ideal setting for growing children includes both a mother and a father.”
This was not simply an abstract exercise, Wildmon said. According to the Palm Beach Post, only four school districts in the U.S. said they would not show the WAFF music video.
“Schools should be teaching children the truth, not politically correct ideology meant to influence the thinking of the next generation,” Wildmon said.