Florida Republicans Advance Expansion of “Don’t Say Gay or Trans” Bill

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Florida Republicans have advanced a proposal to expand a controversial law that critics have dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay or Trans” law. The measure would prohibit classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity through the eighth grade, as well as prevent schools from asking for a student’s preferred pronouns and bar staff from giving their own preferred pronouns.

he bill, which was approved by a House subcommittee, still needs to clear another committee before moving to the full House. Florida faced national scrutiny over the law last year, which prohibited instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in kindergarten through third grade. Governor Ron DeSantis has defended the law and positioned himself as a fierce opponent of what he calls “woke ideology” in education.

Additionally, a separate House subcommittee has approved a bill that would make it easier to sue journalists for defamation, a priority for DeSantis. The legislation, sponsored by Republican Representative Alex Andrade, would declare statements made by an anonymous source to be presumptively false in a defamation lawsuit unless a reporter reveals the source. Democrats have criticized the bill, arguing that it would diminish media and speech protections in the U.S. Constitution and constitutes an abuse of government power.

For the full story, visit Watermark Online.

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may, 2024

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