Gay people exist - young and old, male and female, rich and poor, black and white. So do gay parents and the straight parents and grandparents, siblings, aunties, uncles and cousins of gay children. Should we exclude all of them in the name of faiths that claim to be peaceful, non-judgemental, forgiving and supportive?
Election year is always a time to reflect on where we are as a country and on the things that really matter to us. What do we care about? And what can be done to make things better. As a sportsman and now as a father, I have always believed passionately in the power of sport to improve the lives of young people. I know from my own personal experience and from the achievements of the thousands of youngsters I have encountered throughout my professional tennis career, that sport has transformative qualities.
Now, I have a sneaking suspicion that what I have done is state the glaringly obvious for people who have been teaching for a long time, and I apologise if that is the case. I'm new to teaching, however, and I'm pretty horrified. It's a job I want to do, I see it as more of a vocation, and I've been told I'm very good at it, 'outstanding', in fact.
Whilst education cannot directly and of itself address the underlying causes of economic/social inequality and injustice, it can offer young people a chance to fulfil their potential, to open eyes and minds to opportunities without limit, and to prepare them for a balanced life as confident and active citizens.
Come on, you've got to get up. Did you have any homework? No I don't know where your blazer is. I promise we'll buy some shoes that fit tonight. Can you eat some breakfast & clean your teeth - now. No you haven't got melon in your packed lunch. Yes you do have to clean off that tattoo. No, you can't wear a loom band round your ankle. GET UP NOW! Shouldn't you have left by now?
Most don't. I'm not surprised as it seems a no brainer right? To tell kids age-appropriate information so they can prepare for certain life events in advance and handle them better. There's been a time for all of us looking back when we would think 'I wish I had known this or that before it happened'...
'You're so gay' used to be the worst thing to be called. Thankfully, a lot has changed since I was a kid at school. The acceptance of the gay community has greatly improved but using 'gay' as a slagging for someone still persists. Recently, I got asked if I was gay by a few different people and it got me thinking...