Student Newspaper Calls For Death of Gays

Picture 28Pro-and-con editorial pages have a long if not particularly storied history in student newspapers, though they're not quite an exercise in journalism. They're actually kissing cousins of the forensics club. One student is directed to pen an article arguing for the existence of anthropogenic global warning or for the benefits of cow-cloning, another is told to argue the contra. Minds are sharpened, debating skills are honed, and nobody much reads the things anyway.

It's a fine tradition — until, apparently, an editorial calls for the death of a classmate's parents.

In a pro-and-con editorial package in a recent edition of Shawano High School's Hawk's Post, in Shawano County, Wisconsin, students debated the merits of gay adoptions. According to The Green Bay Press Gazette, the "con" writer contributed these words:

… if one is a practicing Christian, Jesus states in the Bible that homosexuality is (a) detestable act and sin which makes adopting wrong for homosexuals because you would be raising the child in a sin-filled environment. Leviticus 20:13 states "If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woan, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their bloodguiltness is upon them."

The author went on to cite Leviticus three more times. (You can read the whole screed via a PDF downloadable at the Gazette.)

The article wound up in the hands of a 13-year-old in the Shawano school system named Tanner, who's being raised by his dad, Nick Uttecht, and Uttecht's partner, Michael McNeilly. Tanner showed his dads the story. They were not pleased.

Uttecht, who has three other children in the Shawano school system, contacted school administrators and obtained a swift apology from the district superintendent, Todd Carlson, who promised to review the paper's editorial procedures. "Offensive articles cultivating a negative environment of disrespect are not appropriate or condoned by the Shawano School District," Carlson said.

The Gazette story has attracted more than a few unfriendly comments, which has led young Tanner to enter the discussion. He's a smart kid. In the face of really shocking condescension — such as that issuing from the keyboard of a Ms. Judy Hurta, who wrote:

Good thinking Tanner. But you are a rare child. An understanding boy. But the rest of us don't see homo people as being normal and take offense to the realization that they are amongst us. Sodomy is an sex act that is not love but sex. Your dad loves you but so did that coach at Penn state love the boys he violated. To normal heterosexuals it is an abomination that you children are allowed to be raised in a home of love and sexual preferences that regular people don't indulge in. Where are the mothers in this picture? How did the dad's get the children and not the mothers? I am sorry to feel as I do but I do think sodomy is wrong and parents should be a man AND a woman.

— Tanner has maintained grace and good cheer, writing:

I understand that this article can get a lot of hate. My father and my mother had told me that when we decided to send it in as a story. I cannot belive that my school newspaper would post such a story, saying gay people can't raise kids, it just makes me laugh. There is nothing wrong with me,even though one of my parents is gay, i am not emotionally disturbed, nor do i underachive. My parents teach me real values, to love everyone as they are.


  1. SCollingsworth says

    Another well spoken, well raised young person being raised by ‘mos. Shocking. Anyone notice it’s the poor gay kids being raised by straight parents who end up on the short end of the stick?

  2. says

    A quick glance at Judy Hurta’s Facebook profile shows that she “luvs” nature and is quite passionate about protecting the rights of poor abused animals. She even says “God bless all of God’s Creatures whether we have fur or feathers or fins or flesh.” Apparently no one’s ever explained the concept of hypocrisy to Judy, who, quite appropriately, is a resident of a town called Embarrass.

  3. Caliban says

    I haven’t looked at the comments (if their are any) at the Green Bay newspaper, but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if some “Christians” are weighing in about how the author and themselves are being “oppressed” for quoting the Bible. I wonder if they’d feel the same way of a student wrote an op-ed in support of slavery citing Biblical verses, including the one saying it’s OK to beat your slaves so long as they don’t die from the beating within 3 days, or that rape victims should be forced to marry their rapists? They probably would NOT think that was OK, yet self-proclaimed Christians see nothing at all wrong with quoting Leviticus. It’s pure hypocrisy.

  4. classychazy says

    To even compair this to a sandusky’s action is just sickening. I would LOVE to have that woman say something along those lines to me. I am 40 was raised by two men and I turned out better then most of my friends! Due to being raised properly. Some of my friends parents raised them in bars like the moose lodge and the eagles club. They would sleep under the tables in thoose so called family oreniated social clubs. While I was asleep in my bed by 10 on a school night. Yeah straight people raise their kids so much better then homosexuals. I think not!!!!

  5. jamal49 says

    Gosh, I just HATE to rain on that execrable little homophobe’s hate-the-gays-and-kill-them-because-Jesus-said-so-parade, but actually as a lay biblical scholar I can guarantee unequivocally that Jesus said no such thing. In fact, Jesus said NOTHING NOTHING NOTHING about same-sex love at all. However, Jesus did command that we love one another as we would love ourselves and that we not judge lest we be judged.

    I am not a christian per se and I have my issues with the continued prevalence and poisonous influence of the christian religion. Consequently, these days, when spiteful, hateful little homophobes such as the unidentified, high-school “con” author and adult, evangelical homophobes such as Ms. Judy Hurta use their religion to call for my death and the death of my LGBT people, I then put them and ANYONE ELSE WHO SUPPORTS THEIR POINT OF VIEW that lethal violence is a two-way street.

    I am an expert marksman, a brown-belt, a 1st level archer, and one angry, defensive, protective and vengeful homosexual who has no qualms about exercising my Second Amendment rights or claiming temporary insanity or the right to self-defense, thereby taking my own appropriate actions to erase and eradicate their hateful, spiteful homophobic asses from this planet FOREVER.

    Be forwarned, all the little “cons” and the Ms. Judy Hurtas of the world. THIS queer and a network of thousands of others will no longer give you a free pass to spew forth with your vile hatred. We will tracked your sorry asses down and we will be done with you.

  6. says

    well WELL WELL……..

    Yet another ignorant teacher in the school system
    Yep, she can go on with her love of her animals but when we gay boys get together what’s not love , it’s an abomination.

    BTW; Leviticus was a derelict nomad, in rags, eating too many magic mushrooms to be given any credence. Sure he may have heard voices…….but who listens and believes the ravings of a deluded goatherd ?…..even if he is high on a hill ?
    As for Jesus, where does he say anything against us ?
    Dear Ms Hurta, you’re an idiot.

  7. says

    ok….so we have a “Christian” woman who can’t tell the difference between consenting loving relationships between adults, and a grown man RAPING A CHILD.


    then we have another “Christian” saying that “Jesus said ________ about homosexuality.”” Uh, no. He didn’t. Not once. And by saying that “Jesus states in the bible _________” this person has broken God’s Ninth Commandment by bearing false witness.
    Enjoy HELL, sinner 😉

    Biblically speaking (Ezekiel 16….) “sodomy”, the “Sin of Sodom” was greed. so all those who think that the rich shouldn’t pay higher taxes, and all those who think healthcare is for those who can afford it, are actually the TRUE sodomites of America.

  8. Scott says

    Although I am glad we can get to Ms. Hurta’s facebook page and see what an idiot she is, as a teacher one would think that she would have her privacy settings set so HIGH that only her friends could see her profile. It amazes me that all of these people have FB pages that anyone (including their students-she could be fired for that!) have access to!

  9. Dearcomrade says

    “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” Voltaire.

    These homophobic religious fools drive almost as many people away from church pews as Stalin & Mao did. I love ’em.

  10. RC says

    Since I was raised in Wisconsin and my parenting background guess I feel qualified to comment on this. Still a painful subject for me so pardon if I ramble. First found out when I was 17 my parents were really my aunt and uncle. My real mother was someone I was told was my aunt. I was born out of wedlock and didn’t know much about my real mother and always thought of her as a victim. As years went by, I discovered she not only abandoned me but her other children as well. Ironically, she was being enabled in her actions by my cousins who were also abusive towards me. I knew I had a number of half siblings, but after my real mother died a couple of years ago, I discovered I also had a full brother. Also discovered mother had engaged in some unfortunate behavior involving her kids and after she abandoned them, they disowned her. My idealized image as mother as a victim began to fade as people began to reveal secrets after mother died. Seems mom had a passion for men, bars and partying, but her kids – not so much. Since my mother didn’t want anything to do with me, I only met her once and she was kind of a mess then, tho I didn’t know why at the time. Her behavior took its toll and I learned she died in a care institution.

    So — the issue of having two caring same sex parents is a total none issue with me. My aunt and uncle had been divorced and their relationship started out as an affair while my uncle was still married. Their relationship was incredibly and sometimes violently dysfunctional, so I do not see straight relationships as being ideal or magical by any means. My half-siblings related how their lives improved after mother ran away, so I now believe that having a mother in a household is not a guarantee of things either.

  11. Robert in NYC says

    Jesus Christ NEVER appeared or was mentioned in the old testament, the Jewish part of the bible in which Leviticus and all of the other absurd references right wing religious bigots use to justify discrimination and bigotry. Jesus Christ NEVER once mentioned homosexuality or condemned it. Doesn’t say much for those poorly educated students who believe Jesus Christ was around when that infamous verse in Leviticus was written, among all of the other refutable verses. They probably believe the creationist fairy tale is in the New Testament.

  12. GregV says

    Not only do I find Brandon Wegner’s article hateful and inflammatory in that it justifies murdering innocent people, but I’m also offended the the staff advisor did not see it as his/her responisbility to teach these would-be journalists to do some FACT -CHECKING.

    When Brendon Wegner stated that “Jesus said…” why was there not an editor’s note stating that, in fact, Jesus did NOT say any such thing and that that statement was made by a people who pre-dated Him by thousands of years and did not agree with Him on practically ANYTHING?

    The superstitious tribe of Leviticus thought it was a great idea to murder the lady next door if she had a rose and tulip garden, denounced short hair on a man as an abomination, and thought they had to make animal sacrifices on a mountaintop if they’d touched a woman during her menstrual period (among a thousand other bizarre ideas).

    Jesus taught a completely different way of life and set of ideals. The Levitical code was diametrically opposed to His ideals.

    Further in the write-up, Brandon refers to “studies” that say this or that, and cites Paul Cameron as his only “expert.”

    So why was there not an editors note stating the fact that Paul Cameron lost his membership with the American Psychological Association in disgrace for falsifying fake “studies” which had no validity whatsoever. Why was the reader not told that EVERY leading professional association in the social sciences (The American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, et al) have policy statements saying that their studies show EXACTLY the OPPOSITE of everything Brandon is pretending that “studies show?”

  13. says

    actually, when a “Christian” cites Levitical law that “Christian” is therefore stating that Christ in fact FAILED in His mission of sacrifice on the cross.

    you see, theologically speaking, Christ’s sacrifice on the cross “saved us all’ from having to follow Levitical law. thats why none of them are observed by Christians.

    each time a “Christian” brings up leviticus, they’re actually stating that Christ failed on His mission. i wonder how He’d feel about that, eh 😉

  14. Patrick says

    Jesus doesn’t say anything – ANYTHING – about same-sex sex. The passages in Leviticus, per usual, are half-understood and deliberately misrepresented.

  15. Skwerl says

    Sandusky didn’t love little boys. He raped them. Saying he loved those boys is like saying Ted Bundy loved all those young women. Of course, what more can you expect from people who believe their deity loves you even if he eternally fries your soul for not loving him back. Judy Hurta is a sick woman with a dirty mind. I can do without the Christian version of love, tyvm.

    Sincerely, A Straight Woman

  16. JohnAGJ says

    Funny how they like to quote Leviticus 20:13 but never those verses almost all folks would object. When was the last time you ever heard anything like these used against folks:

    Exodus 31:14 – “You shall keep the sabbath, because it is holy for you; every one who profanes it shall be put to death; whoever does any work on it, that soul shall be cut off from among his people.”

    Leviticus 20:27 – “A man or a woman who is a medium or a wizard shall be put to death; they shall be stoned with stones, their blood shall be upon them.”

    Leviticus 25:44-46 – “As for your male and female slaves whom you may have: you may buy male and female slaves from among the nations that are round about you. You may also buy from among the strangers who sojourn with you and their families that are with you, who have been born in your land; and they may be your property. You may bequeath them to your sons after you, to inherit as a possession for ever; you may make slaves of them, but over your brethren the people of Israel you shall not rule, one over another, with harshness.” (according to Leviticus as long as they’re foreigners, slavery rocks!)

    Deuteronomy 22:23-24 – “If there is a betrothed virgin, and a man meets her in the city and lies with her, then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city, and you shall stone them to death with stones, the young woman because she did not cry for help though she was in the city, and the man because he violated his neighbor’s wife; so you shall purge the evil from the midst of you.”

    Deuteronomy 22:28-29 – “If a man meets a virgin who is not betrothed, and seizes her and lies with her, and they are found, then the man who lay with her shall give to the father of the young woman fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife, because he has violated her; he may not put her away all his days.” (can’t divorce her, but at least if you see a woman you want you can rape her and make her yours for the low, low price of 50 shekels!)

    Deuteronomy 25:11-12 – “If two men, a man and his countryman, are struggling together, and the wife of one comes near to deliver her husband from the hand of the one who is striking him, and puts out her hand and seizes his genitals, then you shall cut off her hand; you shall not show pity.”

    Psalm 137:9 – “Happy those who seize your children and smash them against a rock.”

    1 Peter 2:18 – 10.”Slaves, be subject to your masters with all reverence, not only to those who are good and equitable but also to those who are perverse.” (Note the word “slaves” and NOT “servant” as you see in some translations, which is highly disengenuous)

    There are of course many, many more such examples. Now I usually here complaints that these verses are taken out-of-context, that they applied only to the ancient Israelites or to Jews (not Christians), ’twas a cultural thing back then not applicable to today’s society, etc. but funny enough no such reasoning is applied to verses about gay sex. Most at least leave out the part about mandatory death-sentence, but not the moral opprobrium. Well, thanks for that I guess.

  17. Daniel says

    So… When Ms. Judy Hurta says that “you are a rare child…the rest of us don’t see homo people as being normal and take offense to the realization that they are amongst us” I expect that she means he’s rare in the sense that 53% of Americans are now in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage (according to a 2011 Gallup poll)?

    She says that “parents should be a man AND a woman”? So, when you have a single mother or a single father, their children should be taken away from them, right?

    And sodomy? Really? You’re getting into that? I hope she realizes that homosexuals aren’t the only people who engage in sodomy… It’s anal OR oral sex. Sorry, for all of you straight men who get a blowjob from your woman, you aren’t fit to be a suitable parent. If you poke your tree anywhere but where she thinks it belongs, no children for you.

    It disgusts me that she would compare the love that Tanner’s father has for him to the actions of the Penn State coach. If their love is the same, then Ms. Judy Hurta, it is also the same as the love that your parents have for you.

    When I saw that this was in Wisconsin, the state that I live in, I was appalled. I’m tempted to take the 60 minute drive up to Cecil, Wisconsin, get myself a nice White Pages, and have a little talk with Ms. Hurta. *fumes away*

  18. majii says

    I am thoroughly disgusted with these faux Christians who continue to lie on Jesus. Jesus had NOTHING to say about homosexuals. I read my Bible everyday, and I have NEVER read anything that Jesus is supposed to have said against homosexuals.

  19. st8 against h8 says

    My mom is gay and just adopted a baby girl this is the fifth child she will be raising in a loving christian home. I love my baby sister whom was ABANDONED by her STRAIGHT parents. Put that in a damn article.

  20. Michaelandfred says

    Ah, news flash. Jesus didn’t write Leviticus…He came around about a thousand + years afterwards. In fact, those who did write it, and their followers/descendants, still don’t believe in him today. Jesus never said anything about gays. Not once. Ever. So exhausting.

  21. MattS says

    If nothing else, their is a glaring editorial error in this article. One thing a journalism student should learn is to get his facts straight. Jesus said NOTHING about homosexuality. The quoted passage is from Leviticus, which is Old Testament, which was written thousands of years before Jesus.

    As has been said numerous times, Leviticus also contains such gems as don’t eat seafood, women are unclean during their periods, and sacrifice a dove as a burnt offering to god if you screw up a bit.

  22. Ninong says

    Jesus never said anything about homosexuality and he used the one “abomination” only once. He said “the love of money” is an abomination. OMG! The Republicans are not going to like that one!

  23. Jerry6 says

    “As Jesus states in the Bible —-” Jesus NEVER stated anything in any Bible. Historically, the first known written document that mentions Jesus dates from about 92 years after his death. So everyone that lived in Jesus’s time was long dead. So, obviously, everything that Jesus “said” OR DID is pure “bologna”. Non kosher “Bologna”

  24. fritzrth says

    Hey, Skwerl: You said “Now I usually here complaints that these verses are taken out-of-context, that they applied only to the ancient Israelites or to Jews (not Christians), ’twas a cultural thing back then not applicable to today’s society, etc.” and you’re so right.

    Well, give them Matthew 5:18 (you’ll notice: a New Testament quote from the man himself) “I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.” Those who pick and choose which of God’s laws are still relevant are denying the very words of the man they say they worship.

  25. Steve not Eve says

    If the attorney’s allegations are true, the horrific human being in the room is the school superindentant. A lawsuit and dismissal may wise this and other bigots up against bullying a child in his or her public charge.

  26. ns says

    The headline to this article, and Dan Savage’s, is completely irresponsible. The student newspaper did not call for the death of gays. One student wrote a column about adoption and lazily cited Leviticus as evidence of sinfulness and then linked that to his argument. It isn’t helpful to have leading gay bloggers write misleading headlines whilst complaining about bad journalism.

  27. Mark says

    Listen up; the more you attempt to equate your homosexual lifestyle as “normal”, and shove it the faces of everyone, you can expect those who you have pushed, to SHOVE back. This is NOT a case of bullying, but telling you sinners the truth. Take THAT to the bank Bruce.

  28. Gordon says

    I agree with the tenor of all the comments here; however, I think we accomplish nothing (at least nothing related to the progress of human rights) by captioning a story like this. One student was assigned to write a “con” opinion on same-sex adoption—whether or not his arguments are based on his own views, which in this sort of rhetorical exercise is not clear—and quoted the Tanakh/Old Testament. That is NOT by any stretch of the imagination a “Student Newspaper Call[ing] for Death of Gays”. People are understandably angry about the lingering prevalence of such opinions in society; but the way to change things is (and has always been) through enlightened dialog, not censorship and NOT mischaracterizing facts to sell papers (or a blog). This is textbook scare-tactic red journalism.

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