LGBTQ forces are again at work persecuting Trustee Michael Del Grande for standing up for Catholic teaching at the Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB). We are asking your help to make a phone call or two on his behalf.
In November of 2019 Del Grande opposed adding the terms “gender identity” and “gender expression” as grounds for non-discrimination to the Catholic board’s official Code of Conduct.
He showed that the addition of identity groups to the Code was problematic by listing other possible identity groups that could in future lobby for inclusion, including pedophilia and vampirism. His argument was hyperbolic and aimed to demonstrate that if the board failed to oppose the addition of “gender identity,” a term which does not align with the Catholic teaching that God created two genders, male and female, there would be no ability to oppose the addition of these other identity groups.
Gay activists filed formal complaints with the board about Del Grande’s use of the slippery slope argument. The board did an internal investigation of these complaints and in private session this August found Del Grande not guilty of any offences that would require censure. Because the session was in private, the report has not been made public.
This is where former premier, Kathleen Wynne chose to get involved last week, calling for this report to be made public.
According to the Toronto Star, Wynne said she had received a letter from gay activist Kyle Ianuzzi, a former TCDSB Student Trustee, asking for the Education Ministry to secure the release of the report on the “homophobic, bigoted behaviour and language” of Del Grande.
Wynne alleged that Del Grande connected LGBTQ rights to bestiality and pedophilia, and stated that the government should act or else it will be guilty by association with Del Grande’s “vile attitudes.”
Wynne’s argument is a non-starter.
Del Grande's remarks made no such connections between these identity categories.
But a statement from Education Minister Stephen Lecce this week underlined “his deep concern with the language that was used by this individual.”
Spokesperson Caitlin Clark also noted that “earlier (Thursday), Minister Lecce spoke to the leadership of the board to make clear his expectation that the board would deliver on his initial request: a fulsome investigation, a public release of the investigation’s report, and accountability for this trustee’s actions.”
Furthermore there is a TCDSB trustee, Marcus De Domenico, who has already pledged to move a motion to call for the report to be made public.
Education Minister Lecce, Doug Ford and the school board need to know that the public has confidence that Del Grande has done nothing wrong.
In fact, when parents choose to send their children to Catholic schools, they expect that they will receive Catholic teaching. When Trustees fail to uphold this, they are overriding parental choice.
Del Grande was speaking up for Catholic sexual teaching about gender. His language was appropriate for the context and was in no way hateful toward the LGBTQ community. Making a slippery slope argument is commonly done, and not controversial.
Please phone the following politicians and tell them to stop this witch hunt immediately. Let them know
- You don’t think this report should be made public, since this could involve privacy violations.
- The government should stop placing pressure on Del Grande to recant. He was supporting the parental rights of board parents, and trying to override Del Grande violates the parental rights of all the parents in the board.
Make your phone call by Nov. 11, 2020.
- TCDSB Chair, Trustee Joe Martino: 416-512-3401
- Minister of Education, Stephen Lecce: 416-325-2600 and/or 647-560-9700
- Premier Doug Ford: 416-325-1941 and/or 416-745-2859
- Trustee Markus De Domenico: 416-512-3402
- Trustee Angela Kennedy: 416-512-3411
- Trustee Daniel Di Giorgio: 416-512-3410
- Trustee Nancy Crawford: 416-512-3412
- Trustee Ida La Preti: 416-512-3403
- Trustee Garry Tanuan: 416-512-3408
- Trustee Teresa Lubinski: 416-512-3404
- Trustee Maria Rizzo: 416-512-3405
- Trustee Frank D’Amico: 416-512-3406
- Trustee Norm Di Pasquale: 416-512-3409