NEW ORLEANS — (03-20-22) — Louisiana is follow in Florida’s footsteps by announcing its on version of ‘Don’t Say Gay’ legislation, the latest bigoted attack by Republicans upon the LGBTQ Community.
Louisiana is one of four states that already have laws on its books that limit sex education to that of a man and a woman. Now, Rep. Dodie Horton (R) from the Shreveport area, wants to ban school employees from discussing sexual orientation or gender identity in the classroom.
Her version of the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill would apply to kindergarten through eighth grade. Horton says people in her district support the measure while ignoring the thoughts and feelings of other districts throughout the state.
“They just don’t want to take a chance of their children being influenced in a manner that is not conducive to their lifestyle or to their personal beliefs,” said Horton in defense of her anti-LGBTQ legislation.
Horton admits she wasn’t aware of the need for the bill until she started reading about a similar measure that just passed in Florida.
“It just solidified the need for us to protect our Louisiana children as well,” said Horton.
“It has taken on that name because that’s exactly the intent that the people that are filing these bills all across the country are trying to do,” said Forum for Equality Executive Director Sarahjane Brady. “They’re trying to censure and eliminate the discussions of LGBTQ individuals.” said Brady.
Once again Republicans are attempting to isolate and stigmatize the LGBTQ community.
Louisiana’s Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards sent a clear message denouncing the anti-LGBTQ legislation during Monday’s State of The State address.
“Some of the bills that are being brought up this session, they really don’t do anything to make lives better, they don’t continue to move us forward, they do however serve to divide us and some are reminiscent of a dark past that we should have learned from and not relive,” said Edwards.
Despite the opposition, Horton is determined to get the bill passed through the Republican controlled state legislature.
“I started to pray about how we could protect our children here from inappropriate conversations until they are able to dissect it and old enough to understand it,” said Horton. “So, I talked to my pastor and he challenged me and said we just may need to do this.” said Horton.
Horton still has obstacles to conquer to get her legislation passed.
Already a resolution by council President Helena Moreno and co-authored by all members of the city council have condemned the legislation.
Moreno said in a statement, “The level of cruelty in these bills is tragic, and it’s shocking that some legislators can’t understand that this bigoted legislation creates terrible harm for kids.”
As of this report, Horton’s bill has yet to be set for its first hearing.
Article by: Paul Goldberg, Staff Writer
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