Blog: News Update – February 5, 2019

Blog: News Update - February 5, 2019

Dear Friend of CORCRC,

The National Prayer Caucus is sponsoring Project Blitz which is a campaign to provide national support for Bible Literacy Bills, Conversion Therapy, Prayer for Judges, religious restrictions of adoption agencies, requiring “In God We Trust” to be posted in public schools and allowing for religious symbols to be part of national memorials and more!  The stated purpose of this group is:

To protect the free exercise of traditional Judeo-Christian religious values and beliefs in the public square, and to reclaim and properly define the narrative which supports such beliefs.”

This effort is a threat to the separation of church and state and thus to all religions, people of faith and of no faith.  Secularism is being attacked as immoral. This self-appointed cadre is defining Christianity for this nation’s diverse population of Christians. These bills do not protect the freedom of religion; instead they support political policies that will reflect a specific version of Christianity.

Presently at least six states have introduced legislation that allow public schools to offer elective Bible literacy classes.  National leaders have claimed that attacks on Christian Education must stop.

Join CORCRC and 43 national organizations united in opposition to Project Blitz and similar legislative efforts.

Contact Senators Bennet (call 303-455-7600) and Gardner (303-391-5777) to oppose Project Blitz and protect diversity, freethinking and logic.

 

Legislation Update

The government shut-down is temporarily over.

In support of House Bill 19-1032, “The Youth Wellness Act,” Rev. Tamara Boynton testified with this important statement:

My name is Rev. Tamara Boynton. I am an ordained United Church of Christ minister and am representing the Colorado Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. I am also a certified instructor of the comprehensive sexuality curriculum co-created by my denomination and the UUs. I have taught multiple cohorts of kids, including my own, and am speaking out today in vehement support of HB 1032 – The Youth Wellness Act.

I am supporting this bill as a parent, a pastor, and an instructor. As an instructor, I can say unequivocally that comprehensive sexuality education that is research-based, medically accurate, culturally sensitive, and youth empowering reduces the frequency of sexual activity, reduces the number of sexual partners and unwanted pregnancies, and increases healthy decision-making regarding the use of contraceptives, delay of sexual activity, and protection against STIs.

Anecdotally, as an instructor, I can affirm that parents love the comprehensive model – not because they always agree with all aspects of it, but because it cultivates conversation in the home and creates space for families to have honest conversations about sexuality and the values held within families. While we may hope that all families would have these conversations without a nudge, the reality is that they don’t. It’s uncomfortable. There’s never a good time. Despite what you may have heard here today, parents gratefully appreciate curriculum that has been determined to be developmentally appropriate by experts.

As a pastor and an ordained clergyperson in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, I can say that comprehensive sexuality education is consistent with my Christian values. God created the world and called it good: ALL of us and everything in it. Human sexuality is a gift from God and we are called to live life abundantly celebrating the gifts of God. Every single person in this room is a sexual being. And, I need to remind you, so are all our youth. I am going to assume that most of the people in this room have had a sexual experience. I pray that each person has had some good ones. I’m going to assume that many people have had bad ones. As a pastor, I can tell you that sexuality absolutely has a spiritual component. Every sexual encounter affects the spirit. I can assure you that spirits can be harmed and critically damaged by misinformation and shaming, by assault and control. In contrast, education around consent builds up the spirit.  Knowledge about our bodies builds up the spirit.  Loving ourselves and learning how to love others builds up the spirit and connects us more deeply to God.

As a parent, I want all Colorado’s youth – the ones who identify as heterosexual and as LGBTQ – to be given the tools they need to develop healthy, loving relationships. Intimacy is one very real part of a healthy, loving relationship. I wholeheartedly believe in comprehensive sexuality education. And, I agree with those who say, “Education should be taught in the schools. Values should be taught in the home.” We do this with every other subject: schools teach math; we teach our children about our family values around money and finance. Schools teach history and politics; we discuss how our family values are affected by elections, policies, laws. Schools teach reading; we dictate what books we allow in our home. Why is sexuality education any different? Schools should teach youth about their bodies and the very universal human experience of sexuality; the responsible parents among us will complement that information with discussions about our family values around relationships, intimacy, and sex.

Click on picture above to see full video of Rev. Boynton’s testimony

For all these reasons from my experiences as pastor, parent, and sex ed instructor, I support HB 1032 and implore you to do the same.  Vote Yes.  Thank you very much.

Your support nourishes and serves as a catalyst to grow our mission. With a financial contribution, you will ensure our continued commitment to Colorado Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (CORCRC) bringing interfaith and multiracial voices to reproductive health and rights issues.

 

Points of Interest:

Change the culture of norming domestic violenceAt least 40 people were killed in Colorado in the context of domestic violence in 2018.  Each case deserves equal attention and represents a serious social failure.

Keep Grand Junction Community Hospital for the Community: There is still time to reach out to the Grand Junction Community Hospital CEO, Chris Thomas and the Board of Directors to express your concerns about the proposed takeover by Centura Health. Transparency is crucial and the voice of those most impacted by this change must be included.  Urge the Board to host a public forum before any definitive action be taken. Contact Chris Thomas, CEO at cthomas@gjhosp.org


Upcoming Events

March

March 7th: Reproductive Health Lobby Day. Click this link to sign up today!

May

May 7th: Save the Date: Faith and Freedom – The CORCRC Annual ceremony will take place at Temple Emanuel. Details TBA.

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