In this era of the 1001 decrees of Ron DeSantis, HB1557 “Don’t Say Gay” bill is very troubling. It seems to address a problem that does not exist. It is deliberately vague, as its purpose is to initiate a first attack on the LGBTQ community.
The bill starts out innocently enough, with banning instruction of sexual orientation or gender identity in K thru grade 3. I doubt this has happened very often and no respectable teacher would bring up this subject for children that young. There may be instances when children talk about their parents of the same sex, but that can easily be handled without going into detail. DeSantis’s decree now demands that the state get involved and any response from a teacher would be suspect. Not a major problem until DeSantis made it so.
The real problem is the add-on verbiage – or in a manner that is not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards. What does that mean? It means that DeSantis can now control the narrative. The wording was not sloppy by accident, it was meant to open the door to more restrictive measures. The propaganda tool of hatred is a favorite of an unscrupulous politician.
Disney is smart enough to see what is going on and is courageous enough to stand up to DeSantis – and DeSantis can be very vindictive. All the more power to Disney.
Ethel Lee Smith
Green Cove Springs
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