Saturday, August 27, 2011
Sexuality Education Teachers Face Hostility
The Nation: Teaching Sexuality Education, by Anna Lekas Miller:
In 1982, Martha Roper received her first death threat.
Martha—perhaps better known as Ms. Roper—is not a drug trafficker or a gang member. She does not work for the government, or involve herself in dangerous, secret operations. She does not even run an abortion clinic. She teaches sexuality education.
Martha Roper is an award-winning, widely acclaimed sexuality education teacher and author in the state of Missouri. She holds a master’s degree in family and community relations from Teacher’s College, Columbia University, and taught sexuality education in Missouri for over thirty years.
“I had a 13-year-old son around that time,” Ms. Roper told me. “Fortunately, he had a sense of humor, and when a letter addressed to ‘Lesbian Slut’ or ‘Sex Sinner’ would arrive in the mail box, he would say, ‘I think this one’s for you, Mom.’”
Ms. Roper began receiving death threats and hate mail in the early eighties, and they have never completely stopped. Since the advent of the Internet and online technologies such as Google Earth and Google Maps, Roper has had to become much more quiet for her own safety. . . .