You know, with all of the horrible, incomprehensible shit I’ve written about this week, in addition to that I’ve read but haven’t found the time to post on, I can’t exactly get myself into a truly righteous outrage over this relatively minor incident. But I do find it interesting and mildly amusing that just a couple of days after mentioning the infamous but rarely relevant anti-choice propaganda film The Silent Scream, we find out that some moron teacher screened the film to his 8th grade science classes.
A Milpitas science teacher has been placed on leave after showing parts of the graphic anti-abortion film “The Silent Scream” to five eighth-grade classes.
On Jan. 23, after students at Russell Middle School finished a chemistry test on acids and bases, first-year teacher Randy Yang showed clips from the controversial film, which depicts an 11-week-old fetus being dismembered during an abortion.
Some students did not like what they saw. “They’re like, ‘Ewww, that’s gross, why do we have to see that?’ ” said eighth-grader Xhynah Cabugao. “Everybody was kind of disgusted.”
When some students asked why they had to watch, Xhynah said, the teacher told them to avert their eyes if they didn’t want to see it.
[. . .]
The district sent home a letter with students on Friday, more than two weeks after the film’s screening. The letter said that an inappropriate film was shown without district permission and that officials were taking appropriate measures.
Four or five parents contacted the district office, but it isn’t clear how many called the school directly, Gonzales said. Two parents told the Mercury News they are outraged – not only that their children were forced to watch the film but also by the district’s responses to them.
Craig Cosby, Xhynah’s father, said he called the school Monday to ask to see the film himself. He said he was told he could view it by logging onto a computer at a public library.
After they completed a test, students said Yang gave them a choice of watching a film on the water cycle or on abortion. All five of his science classes watched the abortion film, Gonzales said.
Parents say they haven’t been able to find out what Yang intended by showing the film. District officials said the students had not been studying human reproduction.
Following the uproar, Principal Laura Foegal talked to each class, Gonzales said. “She said that the film wasn’t supposed to have been shown and that it was mistaken and (Yang) didn’t know he was supposed to ask for approval of our parents,” said Xhynah, 14.
The district’s policy is to get written parental permission before teaching anything related to human reproduction, said school board member Bill Foulk, who sits on the district’s family life and sex education committee.
No letter seeking parental permission had gone home, district officials and parents said.
So . . . the school didn’t properly train the teacher on important and basic policies, policies that most logical people who have ever even been in a school could have probably guessed on their own, and they’re using this as an excuse. But are they also actually suggesting that if the students were studying reproduction, and that if a letter had been sent out, this would have somehow been okay?
Yeah, I can see why the parents might be upset at the school’s response.
Has anyone out there ever actually seen The Silent Scream? I found it on YouTube once and tried to watch it. It’s only a half hour long, and I assumed that it would be either so ridiculous as to be amusing or so infuriating as to pop a vein in my forehead. Instead, it was just really fucking boring. I’ll admit that I have the attention span of a flea, but I couldn’t make it past more than 10 minutes of the 30 minute film. Yeah, it was outrageous. Yeah, it was ridiculous. It was also not even remotely engaging, so I’m kind of confused about why the antis would want to use the damn thing. But I didn’t get as far as to see the truly graphic stuff. I sure as hell don’t remember watching the dismembering of a fetus, or even the actual “silent scream” scene. If these did appear within the first 10 minutes of the film and I somehow don’t remember, it truly must deserve an award for Excellence in The Field of Boring.
For those not well-versed enough to pick up on all of the inaccuracies, or those just curious to know what’s in there without having to watch it, Planned Parenthood has a response to the film. One that I’m sure Mr. Yang didn’t present to his classes after screening what would still be a wildly inappropriate video.