MUNCIE, INDIANA.---“Shut it down.”
This was one of the many chants ringing through the statehouse before lawmakers arrived Monday.
A large presence of LGBTQ+ supporters shared their opposition of HB 1608. This bill originally would prohibit teachers and educators to talk to students K-3 about sexual orientation, gender identity and other concepts.
Now, the bill author says this bill would limit the discussion on “human sexuality.” A handful of amendments were proposed, and one states that parents would be required to give written consent at the beginning of the school year if their child is going to use a different name other than their legal name.
While lawmakers were listening to public testimony, they could also hear the rally outside as well.
Some at the rally say this was the only way for their voices to be heard by their representatives.
“I want them to hear the voices that are speaking to them, I want them to actually represent the people,” Genny Van Amerongen who is against HB 1608 said. Supporters for this bill were far outnumbered at the statehouse. One said talking about sexuality or identity in schools should not happen and they should not have any influence from that.
“I think they did to rethink their argument about this and they need to see that a child of that age needs to learn how to read and write and establish some kind of state of being so he can make a decision on his own.” Larry Vaughn said.
HB 1608 passed 9 to 4 in the education committee and is on its way to the full House.
Contact Anna Chalker with comments at firstname.lastname@example.org