Last Monday, March 28, Florida Governor, Republican Ron DeSantissigned the so-called Parental Rights in Education Act. Beneath this innocuous appearance was the first step in the strategy that the Republican Party is taking against the rights of the LGBT community and the so-called private rights. A month later, it was no coincidence that a draft of the Supreme Court was submitted, in which an opinion was put forward that contradicted the 1973 ruling guaranteeing the right to abortion in the United States. About twenty states are already promoting in their territories laws such as Florida, rules that are already known by the moniker laws don’t say gay (don’t speak gay, english).
Florida rule prohibits practice in class issues related to sexual orientation or gender identity for students in preschool through third grade, i.e. ages eight to nine. For those over this age, the law requires that the content and debate that takes place in the classroom be “appropriate for the age or development” of the student body, in accordance with standards set by the state government. hands that approved this standard.
On the day the bill was signed, Governor DeSantis made his position clear: “We’re going to make sure parents can send their kids to school to get an education, not to be inspired“.
“Florida was the first state to pass such a curriculum censorship law since 2001,” explains MAP.
According to the NGO Movement Development Project (MAP), “Florida is the first state to pass such a curriculum censorship law since 2001.” “Our equality maps track laws that are currently in place, but by 2022, at least 20 states have submitted accounts this would censor curricula, materials, student groups, and other aspects related to the LGBTI+ collective.
According to sources from the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the largest U.S. LGBT rights NGO, of the bills submitted, “six of them are already approved regulations: two in Florida, two in Georgiaalone in North Dakota and another one in Alabama“.
In Florida, in addition to the aforementioned regulation for the education sector, on April 22 Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the so-called Stop the Awakening Act. According to what the Duke University law professor explains to Público, Ames Simmonsthis standard also contains “provisions which some have called anti-critical race theory and which forbid the teaching of race and gender in ways considered divisive in society.”
“Very often,” explains Simmons, “these laws are accompanied by something called Don’t Say Gay.” At least 12 states have or are promoting this type of bill combination.”
The Stop the Awakening Act, among other things, restricts discussion of race and racism in schools and prohibits any teaching that could make students feel personally responsible for historical errors because of your race, color, gender, or national origin. It also prevents companies from using diversity or learning practices that can make employees feel guilty for similar reasons.
“Worst year in recent history for LGBTI equality”
This strategy of attacking the rights of this segment of the population is not new, although it has not yet been raised so head-on. Usually what was usually done was to include paragraphs here and there so that rights of the LGBT sector in laws on a variety of subjects. As they say, the mountain was made bit by bit.
These laws are known as the laws don’t say gay (in English don’t say gay).
In fact, despite the Florida law being passed last March, according to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), “2021 was the worst year in recent history for state legislation violating LGBT equality. A total of 268 anti-equality bills were passed. presented [por incluir disposiciones que limitan los derechos de este colectivo]27 of which became laws, including 13 related specifically to the rights of transgender youth.” And the worst thing is that this organization warns that “although 2022 is just beginning, it is already becoming year is like 2021 from the point of view of discriminatory state legislation”.
Most of these proposed bills, explains HCR, “focused on two areas: prohibiting transgender children from joining sports teams that fit their gender identity; or banning transgender minors from accessing gender-affirming health care.”
The interim president of HCR affirmed at an April 1 press conference in accordance with Florida law that “all students deserve political leaders who are with them, not those who bully or attack them” and added: “Students have a job when they are going to school school: to study. Instead, LGBTI children will be forced to hide important parts of themselves and their families. We call on Ron DeSantis and the State of Florida to let the kids learn.”
Among the states that have followed Florida and have the most advanced bills are Alabama, Arizona, South Carolina, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma, according to public radio network NPR. and Tennessee. In all cases they are Republican states in the south or inland, and together with Florida represent a population of about one hundred million inhabitants, almost one third of the population from the United States.
“2021 was the worst year in recent history for state legislation violating LGBTI equality,” reports HRC.
Among these bills are those Oklahoma D Tennessee. The former even goes so far as to suggest that books on “the study of sex, sexual lifestyle, or sexual activity” should be banned from school libraries. Regarding the proposed Tennessee law, he calls for a veto of books and educational materials “that promote, normalize, support, or solve people’s problems or lifestyles.” lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender“, according to an analysis prepared by NPR.
Some laws that are nothing new
Such laws are not new in the history of the United States, Simmons said. “They go back to the 1970s when conservatives like Anita Bryant launched public campaigns against teachers and professors based on the idea that talking about LGBTI people, they say, recruits homosexuals or even insinuates that LGBTI people are pedophiles and child molesters.”
In California, recalls a Duke University lawyer, at the time there was a “public campaign called Proposition 6, commonly known as the Briggs Initiative,” aimed at preventing the hiring of LGBTI teachers. conservatives in Florida they call LGBTI related education preparing students to be LGBTI.”
These types of laws are not new in the history of the United States.
Some state laws still survive from those years: “Louisiana has a ‘don’t tell gays’ rule, although they are now considering enacting it. Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas still anti-LGTBI curricula based on the old sodomy lawswhich were declared unconstitutional in 2003″.
Simmons recalls that many anti-LGTBI laws in other states were overturned as a result of Supreme Court rulings in Lawrence v. Texas in 2003; the 2013 Windsor case; and Obergefell v Hodges from 2015. “However, Alabama just repealed its law, but only to replace it this year. anti-LGTBI curricula ban coupled with a provision prohibiting students from using the toilets based on their gender identity,” Simmons criticizes.
However, the only possible veto or stall on current law proposals is once again through the Supreme Court. “Until now,” Simmons explains, “they were considered unconstitutional both because they restrict the freedom of expression protected by the First Amendment, and because they treat LGBTI people differently from heterosexual and cisgender people, thereby violating the equal protection provided by the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
However, as was already known about the bill against the right to abortion, the Supreme Court is under consideration. republican arms by an overwhelming majority of six judges to three, after three judges were appointed under the Trump administration in just four years of office, that is, appointments for life. If the Supreme Court ruling against the right to abortion is upheld, which is expected by the end of June or July, other rights, such as those affecting the LGBT community, could also follow the same path.
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