News and Commentary

Protesters Crowd Florida’s Capitol Building, Chant ‘F*** DeSantis’ Over Parental Rights Bill

   DailyWire.com
MIAMI, FLORIDA - JANUARY 09: Newly sworn-in Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks, as his wife Casey DeSantis stands near him, during an event at the Freedom Tower where he named Barbara Lagoa to the Florida Supreme Court on January 09, 2019 in Miami, Florida. Mr. DeSantis was sworn in yesterday as the 46th governor of the state of Florida.
Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images,)

On Thursday, protesters of all ages gathered in Florida’s Capitol building with signs, flags, and more as part of a demonstration against a state bill that would require age-appropriate lesson plans and classroom instruction on topics relating to gender and sexuality while increasing parental rights and curriculum transparency.

Reporter Jason Delgado captured the scene, tweeting, “Protesters are gathering inside the Capitol Rotunda in opposition to the “Don’t Say Gay” bill. Senate Minority Leader  @LeaderBookFL & Democratic Rep. @AnnaForFlorida are with them, among other lawmakers.”

Critics of the proposal have branded it the “‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill,” claiming it would harm LGBT students by preventing discussion, making them feel unwelcome, and possibly creating an environment of harm at home.

But as pointed out by NPR, what the bill actually does is prohibit instruction on LGBTQ topics for kindergarten through third-graders, provides parents more transparency by requiring schools to notify them of any change in mental, physical, or emotional well being, and allows schools to opt-out of that if there is a “reasonable” fear that notifying a parent would result in abuse:

The legislation prohibits any instruction about sexuality or gender between kindergarten and third grade “or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”

It would also guarantee parents access to their children’s education and health records and require that schools notify parents “if there is a change in the student’s services or monitoring related to the student’s mental, emotional, or physical health or well-being and the school’s ability to provide a safe and supportive learning environment for the student.”

Schools could withhold information from parents if they believed that disclosing it could result in abuse, abandonment or neglect.

Still, the far-left, including President Joe Biden, have declared the bill to be “hateful” and homophobic — and many wrongly believe that it prevents the word “gay” from even being mentioned in any public school setting.

“This legislation is about respecting the rights of parents and protecting kids,” Jon Schweppe, a director at the American Principles Project, told The Daily Wire. “Parents shouldn’t have to fear sending their kids to public school in America, but they do because woke ideologues have become obsessed with teaching kids as young as five that they can change their gender.”

“This bill doesn’t do anything the Left claims — kids can talk about their families, even if they’re LGBT. Classroom discussions can still take place about LGBT history,” Schweppe said. “But this bill tries to provide boundaries, prevent unwanted indoctrination, and give parents more control over the upbringing of their kids.”

During the protest Thursday, people shouted vulgarities about DeSantis, who supports the bill.

“‘F*ck DeSantis’ is their latest rallying cry,” Delgado reported at one point.

Schweppe argues that the vulgarities from the protesters only prove why the bill is necessary in the first place.

“The vulgarity and the nastiness of the school protests, egged on by woke teachers and school administrators, really only proves the need for the bill,” Schweppe said.

The bill passed both Florida’s House last week and is expected to be voted on by the Senate this week. If passed, DeSantis is expected to sign the bill into law.