Florida GOP Gov. DeSantis signs controversial Parental Rights bill into law

Critics of the legislation have dubbed the new law the "Don't Say Gay" bill.

Updated: March 28, 2022 - 3:31pm

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Florida GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis on Monday signed into the law the Parental Rights in Education bill, which the media and critics of the legislation are referring to as the "Don't Say Gay" bill.

At a signing ceremony in Spring Hill, Florida, the governor said he's seen "classroom materials about sexuality and woke gender ideology" as well as "libraries with clearly inappropriate, pornographic mature materials for very young kids."

The bill, initially introduced in January, will severely limit the scope of education related to sexual orientation and gender identity in grades K-3 in the state's public schools. 

While some members of the media, the entertainment industry, and LGBTQ+ advocacy organizations have spoken about the bill as though it is hateful and discriminatory, supporters (a majority of voters) argue that the legislation is a guardrail against the indoctrination of children with age-inappropriate concepts and materials. 

"If you think that a parent sending their kid to first grade should have the gender bread man in there talking about being a different gender, say that and try to make the case for it, but just be honest about where you're coming from," DeSantis said at the signing.

"This is trying to sow doubt about kids about their gender identity. It's trying to say that you know, they can be whatever they want to be. This is inappropriate for kindergarteners and first graders and second graders. Parents do not want this going on in their schools."