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A parents-rights activists group reportedly staged a demonstration outside the California Capitol in Sacramento on Monday, condemning so-called gender-affirming bills while promoting parental notification involving student gender policies.
Local media reported the group of parents gathered on the Capitol lawn to voice opposition against several new radical gender theory-related laws expected to gain momentum in the coming weeks, including undermining parental authority, requiring state-controlled curriculum, and targeting local school boards.
Chino Valley Unified School District school board president Sonja Shaw headlined the parents-rights activist group rally.
“We are going to lobby these bad bills trying to quiet us parents up,” Shaw told Fox News. “We have no desire to stop. We’re linking arms. This has always been us.”
The Sacramento Bee reported the group spoke out against laws like AB 1078, which gives state authorities more control against school boards that ban books, and AB 5, which requires the Department of Education to distribute revised material inclusive towards culturally and racially diverse groups, including LGBTQ+ communities.
Standing beside Shaw was Republican Assembly-member Bill Essayli, a keynote speaker at the rally that continues to push through every school district AB 1314 — his recently failed legislation that would require schools to notify parents if their child uses different pronouns or a change in identity.
“We will accomplish our legislative priorities either through here or through the people directly,” Essayli said at the rally, according to Politico.
Essayli modeled the bill after Chino Valley Unified School District adopted a policy requiring schools to inform parents if their child changes their gender identity, which has since influenced a second California school district to adopt a similar principled action while sparking a civil rights investigation over “potential legal violations” from California Attorney General Rob Bonta.
“Students should never fear going to school for simply being who they are,” Bonta said in a news release on August 4 reported by EdSource. “Chino Valley Unified’s forced outing policy threatens the safety and well-being of LGBTQ+ students vulnerable to harassment and potential abuse from peers and family members unaccepting of their gender identity.”
Shaw, who became a local advocate for parental rights amid the state’s pandemic response, told local media that state investigators subpoenaed her emails and text messages.
“[Bonta’s] automatically trying to assume parents are dangerous, and I think that’s a dangerous, dangerous direction that they’re heading in,” Shaw told Fox News. “And you see it all over California. They’re trying to push out parents, and I think that is something that we need to stand up for right now.”
Gov. Gavin Newsom reportedly spoke at an education event at an Elk Grove school about 20 miles south of the Capitol, where he declined to state his position on the state investigation into the local school district while expressing his support for the LGBTQ community.
“I know that the LGBTQ caucus has got some language they’re working on,” Newsom said, according to Politico, adding the policies are a “work in progress.”
Newsom reportedly met with lawmakers on Monday night in a meeting focused on developing a response to school board districts adopting policies requiring transparency between parents and teachers over gender-related ideology.