Educators In Joplin, MO Are Insane

Is it just me, or is there an inordinate amount of stupid coming out of all the places I presently live or recently lived lately?  Here’s one from a math teacher in Joplin, MO commenting on a former students wall about a gay teen ending their life.

It’s enough to make you cynical about humanity when people can think that it’s the gayness causing the suicide, not the culture of merciless hate in which gay teens must live that has been forged by people who assure us they love the sinner*.

Think this teacher is some loopy extremist?  Think again.

According to local news, Joplin High stated in its defense that it was “not aware of a specific school guideline on discriminating against gays.”

Great call, geniuses!  The school probably doesn’t have a specific school guideline on discriminating against people with brown eyes either.  I wonder if they would have used that defense if the teacher had said 11-13 brown-eyed teens should kill themselves.

That’s a lie.  I know they wouldn’t.  That would just make them insane and nobody would buy the excuse then.  Are these really the best people we can find to prepare the next generation?  Fuck.

* to death


About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.

  • Drakk

    I feel sick.

  • Question Authority

    I used to live right up the road from Joplin. That’s quite common, as that area is the “buckle of the Bible Belt.” There are many good people there, but there are also a lot of racist, homophobic, White Power, “good ol’ boys.”

    • Katie Tims

      You can say that again!

  • Ryan Brown

    I grew up just south of Joplin and moved away about 10 years ago. It’s shit like this that made me glad I left.

  • Raging Bee

    Lemme guess…Is Joplin, MO a “sunset town?” Is it anywhere near Salem?

    • Katie Tims

      In spirit if not location. It’s the main “city” for people that aren’t close to Springfield, which is a shame, since small towns tend to be worse about the religion aspect.

  • Serah Blain

    This doesn’t make me cynical about humanity, it just inspires me to work harder faster longer more. Glad you’re in this fight, JT. We need warriors.

  • Bobby Hill

    I think it is time for another EF5 to obliterate Joplin.

  • Jim

    Yeah, this stinks. I want to let you know that there is more to know. I spoke with the School Board President the evening that this news broke. This incident is being seriously investigated. The School Board President made a point of how personally offensive such a subject is, due to several tragic experiences for friends & family.

    Note that the former student has expressed disbelief, saying that the comments did not fit with how the teacher had acted before. Other aspects of the incident indicate both egregious fault and an alibi. We must hold the school administration and Board accountable for the quality and veracity of its investigation. Until facts are determined (such as the internet trace to the originating computer), our disgust does not have a certain target.

    Joplin Schools have much to learn (as noted in the post) in this area. The attention of non-Joplinites can be helpful.

    A point of personal privilege :
    I have criticized Joplin as much, and probably more, than most people reading this. Yet my attachment is deep. My Dad was Joplin Postmaster for a time. I met the Pretty Little Red-Haired Girl there. Most of my Electronics Engineering career was in Joplin. After the tornado, I was impressed with the energy and resilience that Joplinites showed during and after a stupendous disaster. I can now say, without retracting a single criticism, that I love Joplin.

  • Jim

    I should have checked with the wife before posting – yesterday’s news:

    Note that the teacher has been cleared. I repeat that improvements are needed, and that the larger community can participate.

  • Jonathan Roberts

    Tolerating gays in the schools is obviously why gOd destroyed Joplin with a tornado earlier this year.

  • Quincyme

    OMG. You mean the teacher still has a job? In the UK, this would at least result in a severe censure from the GTC and probably dismissal. Without registration with the GRC, you cannot teach in state schools.

    • Quincyme

      Sorry. GTC.

    • Jim

      Quincyme, please note the preceding link : “Superintendent C.J. Huff said that Jim Whitney’s Facebook account was compromised and that there were no findings that would indicate wrongdoing by Whitney.”

      This confirmed the opinion of the former student: “At that point I was like, ‘OK, that can’t be him.’”

      It is very possible that, even in the UK, disciplinary action would require evidence of guilt, and that evidence of innocence would be mitigating.

  • Mark

    That people would kill themselves over this shows the degree of hopelessness that accompanies the meme that homosexuality is innate. These people need to know that there is opportunity for forgiveness and change as with any immorality.

    • Jim

      The ‘meme’ that homosexuality is innate is not a meme. It is a fact. There is no more hopelessness from that innate attribute that there is hopelessness from innate Asperger Syndrome, innate hypothyroidism, innate genetic pre-disposition to cancer, innate heterosexuality, or innate asexuality. Hopelessness is created by a culture which demonizes the way a person became during conception and fetal development. Hopelessness is created by those who bully and taunt those who are supposedly ‘different’. Hopelessness is created by telling people that their created nature is immoral and that they must seek forgiveness.

      • Mark

        How is it hopeless when you are promised forgiveness?

        • ambera

          No one needs to be forgiven for being human.

          • Mark

            Says who?

        • ckitching

          The sexual drive is just as innate as the desire to eat or sleep. If a religion guilt-tripped you every time you had a desire to eat or sleep, imagine how horrible you’re existence would seem. Now, unlike eating and sleeping, you technically can survive without sex, but it doesn’t change the fact that it’s innate.

          • Mark

            It depends on context, doesn’t it? Over eating is gluttony, sleeping at the wrong times is laziness. Context is just as important in fulfilling sexual desires. There is a time, a place, and a circumstance. If someone were to continually over eat, was told that that was just the way they are, that they were a glutton by birth, this would seem to create a hopeless situation for them, right? Especially with the way that obesity is so unpopular. It is a great disservice to blur the boundries between the person and the action.

  • Carrie

    You have no idea how much this pisses me off, or how much anger boils up inside of me. I have a lot of gay and lesbian friends who are wonderful people. They are just as human as you or I. To think that this poor kid felt like there was no way he could exist in this world because of who he was breaks my heart. Then you have to see the oppression of others who are so afraid to let go of their invalid insecurities that they feel like they have to lash out, like this guy did, and act in such an unintelligible and disgusting manner. This whole situation disgusts me and makes the very core of my beliefs hurt.