Don’t Say Gay


Lani English, Co-Editor

During this month of April, Florida Republican Gov. Ron Desantis, enacted a law in the Parental Rights Education Bill, labled the “Don’t Say Gay Bill”. This law without a fraction of the doubt limits LGBTQIA+ discussion in schools. This article will touch on three main points regarding the “Don’t Say Gay Bill”: 1. What does this law do and what are the repercussions? 2. Why is there controversy surrounding the bill? 3. What have students said?


1. What does this law do? What are the repercussions?

This Florida law states, “Classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity may not occur in kindergarten through grade 3 or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”(Lines 97-101 of the HB1557 Education Bill). This essentially says that the talk of sexual orientation or gender identity does not belong in the classroom at an early age. Parents then have the final say of what their children learn and when.  

2.  Why is there controversy surrounding the bill?

The bill in many ways is controversial because it sets the precedent that LGBTQ+ issues should not be discussed in the classrooms. Yes, the bill is only from kindergarten through third grade so many feel that it shouldn’t even matter if the topic isn’t talked about. Wrong. Children are like sponges. Constantly taking in new information and absorbing. If we deprive children from being aware of a growing group of “20 million” (The Hill) population, then they may become shocked or feel the need to hide their true identity in later years. Another reason why this topic is surrounded by controversy is that we have the Florida Republican Gov. Ron Desantis using victimizing words claiming the people who oppose the bill are “sexualizing kindergartners”. On Twitter, his press secretary, Cristina Pushaw,  claimed opponents of “grooming” children. This growing republican narrative accuses opponents of pedophilia, which we have noticed during the questioning of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson. 

3. What have students said?

Students of Blake High School in Tampa, FL created the Students Oppose Don’t Say Gay account. Here they post insights into how they feel the bill impacts students. This account is a way to protest and show their opinions. I highly encourage readers to take a look at this amazing source.