Shouldn’t television be one place where teens can
explore their sexuality?
(FFA), no, it shouldn’t be. For the last year, its members have been monitoring the series Degrassi:
The Next Generation.
The drama first aired in 1979 and is known for taking a hard
look at issues surrounding teens. During the course of its 30-year run, Degrassi
has tackled hard topics such as date rape,
teen pregnancy, abortion, school shootings, cutting, sexually transmitted
infections and homosexuality.
So why has the FFA suddenly taken an interest?
According to an article in The Huffington Post, David Canton, founder of FFA, says the show went
overboard when it introduced two new storylines.
One was about a gay quarterback (soiling the sacred
sport of American football!) and the other, a female-to-male transgender teen
exploring his identity and first relationship.
In Canton’s world, the two characters are unrealistic.
“How many high schools have a gay first-string quarterback
who becomes lovers with someone else on the team? This relationship is
extremely unlikely, and they shouldn’t open this to dialogue,” Canton said, adding, “I think that it is statistically improbable that you will have a
female-to-male transgender who is in love with a lesbian or bisexual in a
Since they cannot ban the drama from being shown, the FFA
has targeted the advertisers. After every show the FFA sends out an email blitz
to the advertising companies. The emails condemn the show for bringing the
transgender lifestyle into the homes of millions of teens.
The FFA backs up everything on their gaudy website, which
highlights scenes of Adam (the transgender teen) and his girlfriend, Flora, kissing.
examples have this tag line: “Unfortunately, millions of young
teens and children witness this irresponsible affirmation of a transgender
Ugh. They make
The good news
is that there are intelligent people out there who watch Degrassi.
two-part transgender episode, the organization Parents, Families and Friends
of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) ran a public-service announcement and an online
educational program on its website.
All I can say is thank goodness that for every rightwing
bigot out there, there is also someone with an open mind and a willingness to
educate people on different lifestyles and the struggles that many of us go