Pro- and anti-SOGI rallies to be held in Coquitlam and Victoria for B.C. LGBT school resources

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      The debate over LGBT issues and sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) resources in B.C. schools continues on in B.C., and two upcoming events are being planned to drum up support for either sides of the divide.

      Over in Victoria on Vancouver Island, the Truth is Not Hate: Free B.C. From SOGI 123 protest will be held in front of the B.C. Legislature at 11:05 a.m. on September 29.

      This Christian-based rally is being organized by transgender male Jenn Smith from Abbotsford and is primarily intended to "protect children from an insane ideology and protect the rights and beliefs of Christian families which are being trampled".

      In an August 28 news release, Smith said that "he believes this program will destroy the lives of countless young people and that it is also essentially totalitarian in nature because it seeks to undermine parental authority".

      On Smith's website, a biography about Smith states that "he first began expressing as the opposite gender when he was about 9 years old and has battled these impulses in himself for decades. He has been writing and speaking on the dangers that transgender ideology poses to women and children, and more recently has focused his efforts on exposing SOGI 123 and its assault on parental rights, freedom of religion, and freedom of conscience."

      Abbotsford transgender man Jenn Smith is organizing a protest against SOGI 123 in Victoria.

      Former Christian broadcaster Laura-Lynn Tyler Thompson will also cohost the event. Thompson is running for the Burnaby school board.

      In April, Thompson and Smith were part of a protest at the B.C. legislature to ban SOGI from schools. They were outnumbered and overwhelmed by supporters of SOGI, who transformed the event into a dance party.

      Thompson also engaged in a heated debate over SOGI on social media on September 15 with former CTV news anchor Tamara Taggart.

      Prior to the Victoria protest, the Pro-SOGI 123 Event will be held from noon to 3 p.m. on September 23 at Town Centre Plaza (1299 Pinetree Way) in Coquitlam.

      The family-friendly event is being organized by Tri-Cities Pride Society.

      The afternoon will include free entertainment and attendees are encouraged to bring their own picnics.

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