School polygamy poster causes controversy in Canada

Canada, which has allowed same-sex marriage, is now embroiled in a row over a poster which promotes polygamy in schools.

The poster declares: “Love has no gender” and shows a variety of relationships including an image of one man and two women, and two men and one woman.

Toronto District School Board has tried to defend the poster, but has come under fire for being “blind” to its effect.

Queer

The “Love has no gender” poster is one of five different designs, including one that bears the words: “We’re here, we’re queer, we’re in your school”.

A law which brought in same-sex marriage was passed in Canada in July 2005.

Doretta Wilson from the Canadian group Society for Quality Education, accused the school board of being “overly politically-correct” with the use of the polygamous relationship image.

Inappropriate

She added: “This will certainly be controversial among some parents, particularly religious parents of different faiths, and maybe even those who aren’t religious who think this isn’t appropriate for young children, who may not understand”.

On a Canadian newspaper’s website, one writer criticised the board for using the three-person image.

Daphne Bramham said: “But by being so stupid and so blind how the image reads to most people, the Toronto School Board appears to be promoting a practise that leads almost invariably not only to the sexual exploitation of girls, the expulsion of boys, but poor educational and health outcomes.

“At very least it needs to recall all of the posters and stickers that have been distributed and take it off its own website.”

Choose

A spokesman from the board said it “does not support polygamy” and added: “The images in question were meant to support an individual’s right to choose whom they love, regardless of gender.

“For example, the reason for depicting two women and one man was meant to show that a person can be attracted to more than one gender”, he said.

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