OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis signed into law Florida’s “Parental Rights in Education” bill on Monday as Democrats and their allies in the mainstream media have tried to attack him for supporting the bill.
The bill prohibits teachers from giving classroom instruction on “sexual orientation” or “gender identity” in kindergarten through third grade.
“In Florida, we not only know that parents have a right to be involved, we insist that parents have a right to be involved,” DeSantis said at a press conference at the Classical Preparatory School in Spring Hill, Florida.
The bill was mocked at the Oscars Sunday night, with actors repeating the word “gay” as the crowd applauded.
DeSantis hit back at his critics in Hollywood, saying, “If the people who held up degenerates like Harvey Weinstein as exemplars and as heroes and as all that, if those are the types of people that are opposing us on parents’ rights, I wear that like a badge of honor.”
“They don’t want to admit that they support a lot of the things that we’re providing protections against,” he said.
“For example, they support sexualizing kids in kindergarten. They support injecting woke gender ideology into second-grade classrooms. … And so what they’re doing with these slogans and these narratives is they are trying to camouflage their true intentions.”
Last week, DeSantis signed a bill that will impose four-year term limits on school board members and subject most material in district schools’ libraries and classrooms to governmental oversight and approval practices.
During a news conference in Daytona Beach, DeSantis spoke about CB/HB 1467, a bill that he argued is “probably the strongest curriculum transparency legislation in the country” as resistance against “indoctrination in the school system.”
According to the bill, anyone involved in the selection of a K-12 district school’s library materials must complete a training program designed by the Florida Department of Education before they can qualify to do so.
DeSantis said the legislation will enable parents to “defend the education of their kids” and keep instructional, library, or reading list material in line with state standards.
“I’m a big believer in term limits, but you don’t even always have to wait for that to attach. You can throw the bums out in the election, If they mistreated your kids or if they didn’t follow the law, or if they did anything, you have an opportunity, for many of them will be up for reelection. I think that school board races often did not get much attention,” DeSantis said.
“But I think what we’ve found is that those are some of the most important elections that we’re able to vote on, I think you’re going to have a huge amount of voter interest in these August and November elections for the school boards in the various counties,” he added.
“Then you have this governor’s race in Virginia, where you had the losing candidate say parents that — he said, parents should not be involved in what is taught in the school system. And so there is a debate in this country about what role parents have in the education of their kids. And I think in Florida with, our Parents’ Bill of Rights, with the bill we’re going to sign here today, other bills we’re going to sign later, we believe parents not only have a role, but they also have a fundamental role to be involved in the education of their kids. And that’s how it’s going to be in the state of Florida,” DeSantis argued.