A group of Texas-based conservative Christian pastors has denounced a recently announced proposal for Houston public schools to include an LGBT studies program.
The Houston Area Pastor Council, the same coalition that helped defeat the city's controversial transgender bathroom ordinance in 2015, has declared their opposition to recent comments made by Houston Independent School District Superintendent Richard Carranza.
In a statement emailed to supporters on Tuesday, the HAPC declared that "this is Houston, not San Francisco," partly alluding to California's LGBT-centered history program.
"The proposal by HISD Superintendent Richard Carranza to introduce California-style LGBTQ 'studies' into our children's U.S. History curriculum is not about education, it is about indoctrination," stated the Council.
"Carranza is an import from San Francisco where this kind of propaganda that attempts to equate sexual lifestyles, gender confusion and hostility toward the traditional family has become the norm."
The Council went on to state that school district leadership "needs to remind Dr. Carranza that this is Texas, where the people of all ethnicities still believe that our children are to be protected, nurtured and educated, not used as a social experiment of a radical political agenda."
Earlier this week at a town hall meeting hosted by the African-American news publication the Houston Defender, Carranza spoke about wanting to advance an LGBT history course for students.
"The LGBTQ movement in the U.S. has a history, and in many cases, many people would call it a civil rights history in terms of acceptance and in terms of who have been leaders of the movement," said Carranza, as reported by the Houston Chronicle.
"I think it's part of the American history. To include that as part of what kids study is just a bigger picture of who we are as America."
The effort may meet some state-level roadblocks however. According to Texas' Health & Safety Code, the section "Educational Materials for Minors" prohibits pro-LGBT documents.
"The materials in the education programs intended for persons younger than 18 years of age must ... state that homosexual conduct is not an acceptable lifestyle and is a criminal offense," reads the section in part.
The same section also mandates that materials must also state that "sexual activity before marriage is likely to have harmful psychological and physical consequences" and "teach adolescents ways to recognize and respond to unwanted physical and verbal sexual advances."