Monday, March 19, 2012

Why Getting '180" To High School Kids Is Critical

Taggart Lee is a teacher at Canyon High School, in Canyon Country, CA.

Last week, with the wonderful help of family members and friends, I distributed 400 "180" DVDs to students as they left the campus of Canyon High School.

Not long after distributing the videos Trisha Ramos, writing on my behalf, sent an email to all of the teachers and administrators at Canyon High School. Here's the email:

"My name is Tony Miano, I work with Los Angeles-based film producer Ray Comfort. On Wednesday we gave hundreds of your students a free copy of a 33-minute award-winning movie called “180,” as they left your school. “180” received over one million views on YouTube in 22 days (we have given away over 200,000 DVD’s to high schools and colleges across the U.S.). It opens with 14 people (mainly college students) not knowing the identity of Adolf Hitler. This lack of knowledge of one of the darkest periods of human history deeply concerns me. You may like to look at the movie on-line and discuss it with your students. “180” also deals in depth with the subject of abortion. www.180movie.com"

I received the following email response from Mr. Lee:

"Take me off of you right-wing whack job list. Your movie is offensive and you are morons for comparing the Holocaust to the safe and legal practice of abortion. You aren't teaching anything or anyone, you are propagandizing. I am a former clinic defender, you're barking up the wrong tree here, idiots."

I sent Mr. Lee the following response:
Mr. Lee,

You are not on any “list.” Your email address, like the rest of the teachers and administrators at Canyon High School, is available through the school’s website (http://www.canyonhighcowboys.org/apps/staff/).

Poor grammar and poor manners aside, I do appreciate you taking the time to write us. Your email only serves to galvanize our resolve to reach the students at your school and high schools everywhere, with the message of “180.”
Mr. Lee's nonsensical tirade in written form is evidence of why it is so very critical to get "180" into the hands of as many high school students as possible.

Of course, in the United States, Mr. Lee is free to spew his hate-filled rhetoric. He is just as free as I am to distribute material to high school students from a public sidewalk outside his school. But Mr. Lee is the kind of man who is making indelible impressions upon the minds of the age group of young people most likely to have and/or encourage others to have an abortion. Mr. Lee is the kind of man who uses his freedom as license for condoning, supporting, even facilitating (as a clinic defender) the murder of unborn children.

Sadly, it is unlikely we can change the minds of people like Mr. Lee (although God can change the hardest of hearts); but we can certainly change the minds of those Mr. Lee is influencing--high school students. More importantly, of course, than changing the minds of young people about abortion is proclaiming the gospel to people of all ages, with the hope that the Sovereign Creator will change their hearts and minds and grant them the gifts of repentance, faith in Jesus Christ, and eternal life.

The Lord is using "180" to accomplish both goals.

If you would like to share your thoughts and concerns with Mr. Lee, you can email him at: tlee@hartdistrict.org.

Please make sure to be Christ-like in any and all correspondences with Mr. Lee.

Join me in praying for the students who received "180" at Canyon High School last week. And pray for Taggart Lee. Pray the Lord brings him to repentance and faith in Jesus Christ.