By Todd Starnes Students and staff at a preschool in Stockholm, Sweden will no longer be allowed to use gender specific language like "boys" and "girls" and traditional fairy tales have been replaced with stories featuring homosexual couples under a new policy that promotes gender equality.
The Egalia preschool, a public school, is attempting to engineer equality between the sexes in children as young as one-year-old, according to the Associated Press.
"Society expects girls to be girlie, nice and pretty and boys to be manly, rough and outgoing," teacher Jenny Johnsson told the AP. "Egalia gives them a fantastic opportunity to be whoever they want to be."
The core precept in Sweden's national preschool curriculum is to break down gender roles.
To accomplish that goal, the school has banned gender specific words. Students will no longer be able to use words like "him" or "her." Teachers are expected to address the children as "friends" rather than girls and boys.
The school has even hired "gender pedagogues" to root out language and behavior that risk reinforcing gender stereotypes.
School libraries have also come under fire. Traditional fairy tale books like Cinderella and Snow White have been removed from bookshelves. The new children's books deal with homosexual couples, single parents or adopted children.
School leaders said they place a special emphasis on fostering a pro-gay environment. One book tells the story about two homosexual giraffes who discover an abandoned crocodile egg.
Lotta Rajalin directs the preschool. She told The Daily Mail that it was important to teach children to be tolerant of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. "A concrete example could be when they're playing 'house' and the role of the mom already is taken and they start to squabble," she told The Daily Mail. "Then we suggest two moms or three moms and so on." A number of parents have expressed concern about the school, one calling it "gender madness."
Jay Belsky, a child psychologist at the University of California, Davis, told the AP he wonders if the school is doing the right thing."
"The kind of things that boys like to do - run around and turn sticks into swords - will soon be disapproved of," he told the AP. "So gender neutrality at its worst is emasculating maleness."