Thursday, May 15, 2008

Separate Bathrooms For Gay Students at School?

Homosexual and heterosexual students should have separate bathrooms and showers in Idaho schools, a Wilder Republican running for the Idaho House said Friday.

Walt Bayes, who gained notoriety two years ago by going on an anti-abortion hunger strike that lasted 59 days, said he wasn’t sure how the issue could be handled other than providing different facilities for gay and straight students in schools.
Also on agenda

Some of Walt Bayes’ other platforms:

• Make the supplying of pornography to juveniles by any person, official, librarian or institution a criminal offense.

• Require written permission from parents or guardian before supplying any sex education, contraceptive or abortion.

• The state shall pay equal money for equal education to all schools: public, private or home. “Give home and private schools money and they will run the unions out of town,” Bayes said.

• Wolves should be killed wherever they endanger livestock, game, pets or people. Bayes said he shot a wolf that was chasing his deer. “To me it was legal because the (Idaho) Constitutional says I have a right to protect my property,” Bayes said. He said officials decided not to prosecute him.

The topic came up after Bayes mentioned it in his campaign literature, where he wrote, “It is absolutely wrong to force any student to share the same bathrooms and showers with homosexual teachers or students.”

Bayes is a 70-year-old retired blue-collar worker and farmer. None of the three Republicans running in the Tuesday, May 27 primary against him agrees with his position.

“I don’t think it’s worth commenting on,” District 11 House Seat B incumbent Rep. Carlos Bilbao of Emmett said. “I don’t know where he’s coming off on all this.”

Bayes said that when he was 18 it would have been “an absolute catastrophe” for him to have showered with girls. But he said he wasn’t completely sure how the issue of homosexuals and heterosexuals using the same facilities in schools should be addressed.

“I don’t really have an answer for it, but we’re going to have to do something if there’s going to be a considerable number of our people who are going to go that way (homosexual),” Bayes said. “We’re going to (need) some kind of separation.”

Bayes said his main goal as a candidate is to stop abortion by having the fetus defined as a person from the moment of conception.

One of Bayes’ opponents, Steve Coyle of Star, said he did not see the need for separate facilities for gays and straights in schools. Another candidate in the race, Jeff Justus of Meridian, said the proposal was not needed.

“We have a lot more important issues than that,” Justus said.

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