Oppose Gender Role Indoctrination in Schools


Target: Representative Phil Gingrey

Goal: Don’t push for gender role indoctrination in grade school classrooms

Phil Gingrey, a Representative from Georgia, has become a lightening rod for outrage concerning comments he made about gender roles in a recent speech lauding the Defense of Marriage Act. To defend so-called “traditional marriage,” Gingrey called for going “back into the schools at a very early age, maybe at the grade school level, and have a class for the young girls and have a class for the young boys and say, you know, this is what’s important” about gender roles. While he was conveniently vague about the details, we can surmise from his history of talking about women and women’s issues that rigid and antiquated gender roles would feature prominently in Gingrey’s plans.

This is not the Representative from Georgia’s first time courting outrage for making highly controversial remarks about gender issues. Not too long ago, Gingrey, a former gynecologist, came under fire for seconding senatorial candidate Todd Akin’s inflammatory claim that that in cases of “legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing [pregnancy] down.” In trying to justify his agreement with Akin’s statements, Gingrey make unfounded claims about his former professional field; but even worse, Gingrey concurred with Akin in putting the blame for rape on the victim. Beyond the technical absurdity of such claims, what is far worse is that they continue to deter rape victims from reporting their rape.

In the case of imposing gender roles on susceptible children, Gingrey is once again standing on a weak foundation. Men and women are separated by the simple fact of sexual anatomy, which is a legitimate and important difference. Any other gender differences that people like Gingrey like to throw around—including the natural submissiveness of women, their place in the home and not in the workforce, or their inability to provide the same parenting that a man can provide—are social constructs of mankind, not rooted in biology. Imposing these gender roles on children through the instrument of public education would be a calamity and misuse of state services. Please sign the petition below to condemn Representative Gingrey’s statements and decry his plans to indoctrinate America’s children.


Dear Representative Phil Gingrey:

I am appalled at your recent statements about gender during your laudatory speech supporting the Defense of Marriage Act. Your claims about gender differences and your plan to use public education to indoctrinate children regarding those so-called differences are objectionable and uncivil. The difference between men and women are anatomical; what men and women are supposed to do, how they are supposed to act, and what ambitions they ought to seek are all social constructs, not biological imperatives.

Like your support for Todd Akin’s incendiary remarks about rape victims becoming pregnant, your current stance on gender roles in education is faulty and ill-advised. I demand that you retract these statements, apologize for them, and pledge not to subject America’s schoolchildren to your antiquated notions about gender roles.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Talk Radio News Service via Flickr

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72 Signatures

  • Hermann Kastner
  • James Thrailkill
  • Mal Gaff
  • Terrie Phenicie
  • Nancy Petersen
  • Holly Hall
  • Frédérique Pommarat
  • Marianne Oelman
  • Melanie waleski
  • Ricki Newman
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