Letters: Students’ rights | Free speech | Nearly tragic | Advancing justice | Abortion rights

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LGBTQ students’ rights
must be protected

Re: “Chaos in Sunol after flag ban” (Page A1, Sept 14).

Another day brings another assault on the safety of LGBTQ+ youth in our community — this time in the form of removing pride flags from school grounds. It’s part of the broader push to erase LGBTQ+ history from school curricula and to force outings of students to parents under the guise of “parents’ rights.”

But it’s not parents’ rights at risk here. It’s the rights of the children in our community that we need to protect. LGBTQ+ youth are overrepresented in the homeless population, and an estimated 25-40% of LGBTQ youth become homeless due to their family’s opposition to their sexual orientation or gender identity.

We need our governor and statewide leaders to take swift action to ensure that schools are safe havens for LGBTQ+ youth and not a place that exposes them to further victimization. That’s a right owed to our children and one that’s steadily being stolen from them.

Josh Selo
CEO, Bill Wilson Center
Santa Clara

Freedom of speech,
but not too free

Re: “Religion is personal, not public policy” (Page A6, Sept. 12).

The chilling blanket statement of a recent contributor that “Christians think they have the answers to everything,” and “they focus so much on sex” does not represent my experience. The Christians I know, who have been neighbors and co-workers over many years, have been among the kindest people I’ve ever met. No doubt there are exceptions, but surely such a broad stroke does not seem fair to define any such group.

As to “they should keep their religious beliefs to themselves where they belong,” I’ve similarly heard that politics should be personal, and kept private. Or issues of morality. Or sex. Or money. Well, says who?

Everyone I know who has taken one of those positions insists they are a staunch advocate of freedom of speech. Unless, of course, the topic crosses a line they have arbitrarily drawn in the sand.

Fortunately, that writer and this one can disagree.

Robin Bligh

Gun incident could
easily have been tragic

It keeps hitting closer to home. Two weeks ago, it was Yerba Buena High School. Just a day ago, it was Hollister High School. And every single day sometimes two or three lockdowns across the United States.

Every time, there is that fear — is this another school shooting? Sometimes, it is just a threatening social media post or a call-in prank. However, there was a weapon this time. While it doesn’t point to an intent to “shoot up the school,” it does point to a concern for the safety of students and staff at HHS. This could be a reality shift for many across Hollister. What if that student had used that gun? That isn’t mindless speculation but rather an event that could become disturbingly real.

Now is the time for us to make sure every student has access to help and make school safe before it is too …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment


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