Florida’s House of Representatives have passed a law known as the “don’t say gay” bill, which would mean teachers are obligated to out LGBTQIA+ students to their parents.
Governor of Florida, Ron DeSantis is attempting to pass a state law that will ban teachers from discussing LGBTQIA+ topics in classrooms, and effectively ignore the existence of homosexuality and gender nonconformity all together.
The bill passed the House of Representatives on Thursday with a 69-47 vote, and will now move up to the Senate to be discussed.
In addition to banning teachers from acknowledging the existence of anyone that isn’t cisgender and straight, the bill will also force teachers and school councillors to disclose students’ personal information to their parents, destroying one of the very few safe spaces for children to discuss their sexuality.
But the bill is a little bit hazy when it comes to defining what a teacher or school councillor will have to tell parents, and if they get it wrong, parents can sue.
One of the more unbelievable grey areas will mean that a teacher must inform parents if their child mentions that they’re thinking of going vegetarian, because apparently dietary choices should be discussed at home.
During an Education Committee hearing, Democrat Lori Berman asked, “Am I right to read that this bill would allow a parent to sue a school if their child requests a vegetarian meal for lunch and they are not consulted?” The answer to which, was apparently yes.
So now DeSantis can rest assured that he’s done everything in his power to ensure plant-based options aren’t turning the impressionable children of Florida gay. But he’s also become a nationwide laughing stock in the process.
Unfortunately, some of the only people that agree with him are the people who hold the power to pass the ridiculous bill.
But there are still Senators working hard to shut down the legislation, like state Rep. Michael Grieco who said, “I’m going to vote down on this bill, and I am going to say ‘gay’ until I am rainbow in the face.”