Florida’s House of Representatives passed the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ Bill on Thursday.

The bill, officially titled Parental Rights in Education bill, passed 69 – 47. It “prohibits classroom discussion about sexual orientation or gender identity” and allows parents to take the school district to court if they believe a school has violated the law. 

The bill has been making its way through the legislative process.

Heads to the Senate and then the Governor

It now heads to the Florida State Senate and then to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is expected to sign it into law.

Rep. Joe Harding (R), the member of the Florida House that introduced the bill, said, “Creating boundaries at an early age of what is appropriate in our schools, when we are funding our schools, is not hate.”

Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith (D), who is gay, tweeted, “As expected, the [Dont Say Gay Bill] just passed the Florida House, but SEVEN Republicans crossed party lines to vote against it. I want to thank [Florida House Democrats] for their consistent allyship and also thank the gang of 7 who saw our humanity and rejected this terrible legislation.”

President Joe Biden has come out in opposition to the bill, calling it “hateful.”

In response to the news, Equality Florida, a Florida based LGBTQ rights organisation, tweeted, “If signed into law, these bills will have disastrous impacts on classrooms and workplaces. They will turn Florida into a surveillance state and give the government broad license to censor conversations about American history, the origins of racism and injustice, and the existence of LGBTQ people.

“The Florida Senate should choose not to take up this extreme legislation and turn Florida into a censorship and surveillance state.”

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