There was a substitute teacher in the fifth-grade class at Deerfield Elementary School in Utah who asked the class to explain, one by one, what they were most thankful about this Thanksgiving. When it was Daniel’s turn, he stood up and said he was most thankful that he was “finally going to be adopted by my two dads.”
The teacher then launched into a ten-minute lecture about how “two men living together is a sin,” and then asked the boy:
“Why on earth would you be happy about that? That’s nothing to be thankful for.”
And while that teacher ranted, three girls in the class tried to intervene, tried to get the grown-up teacher to act like a grown-up teacher, and when their efforts failed, they left the room to get the principal, who came back with them and escorted the teacher out of the classroom.
And, as bigots and homophobes, as this substitute was being removed from the school, she continued to argue, continued to try and make her point, and told Daniel it was his fault that she went off on him.
You know, because he was thankful for having two dads. And the saddest thing—other than this homophobe being allowed to teach children—is that Daniel was afraid to speak because he thought it might hurt his chances at the adoption being finalized.
One of the his fathers, Louis van Amstel, spoke to the mother of one of the girls, who told him:
“I am so glad that I raised my daughter in a way where she would stand up for what’s right.”
The better news is that children will be the ones to end this kind of bigotry and hate; the children will stand up for what is right.
The best news is that the substitute teacher at the center of this story has been fired from the staffing company that employed her.
And the bestest [not a word, I know] news is that Daniel will have two dads by Christmas.