Equality Florida Targets DeSantis, Parental Rights Bill in Political Ad

group of people recording a political ad


Equality Florida, a LGBTQ advocacy group, released a television advertisement on Monday “blasting” Governor DeSantis over the Parental Rights in Education bill (SB 1834), which the group describes as “LGBTQ censorship.”

The ad, shown below, refers to a provision in the Parental Rights in Education bill that “prohibits a school district from encouraging classroom discussion about sexual orientation or gender identity in primary grade levels or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students.”

Critics of the Parental Rights in Education legislation have labeled it the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.

The ad shows a student giving a classroom speech. When the student mentions she has two moms, alarms start going off in the classroom and the teacher is asked to report to the office.

Equality Florida contends that “the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ Bill would further stigmatize the LGBTQ community, chill efforts to create inclusive school environments, and isolate LGBTQ young people who are already at staggeringly higher risk of depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation than their peers.”

“Not since the days of Anita Bryant have we seen such craven attempts by a leader to build political power by targeting and demonizing LGBTQ people,” said Nadine Smith, Equality Florida Executive Director in the group’s press release.

Critics of the bill have refused to answer questions about the provisions in the legislation, which is focused on parental rights. The parental right provisions require parental notification related to certain actions taken at school and “adopt procedures that reinforce the fundamental right of parents to make decisions regarding the upbringing and control of their children.”

The Florida Capital Star has submitted questions related to these provisions to Equality Florida and have not received a response. Previously, The Capital Star submitted questions to legislative critics of the Parental Rights in Education bill, and those questions have been ignored.

Equality Florida also noted in the release that this is the “first of two television ads highlighting the disastrous impacts of Governor Ron DeSantis’ legislative agenda that threatens to 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 30-second ads depict school life in the wake of the bills aimed at muzzling teachers and erasing LGBTQ families.”

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Steve Stewart is a senior contributor at The Florida Capital Star. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Political Ad” by Equality Florida.


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