Family Institute: Republicans voting for LGBT education bill will be held accountable
Two Republican state senators, Jason Barickman (Bloomington) and Chris Nybo (Elmhurst), voted for legislation that would require lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) lessons in the Illinois public schools, and the head of the Illinois Family Institute (IFI) promises their constituents are going to hear about it. Repeatedly.
“The voters in their districts need to know they voted to take control from the local school districts to teach this kind of propaganda,” David Smith, executive director of IFI, told Prairie State Wire.
Both Barickman and Nybo have been trending left lately, Smith added, leaving “a lot of room for someone to challenge them from the right.”
Introduced by Sen. Heather Steans (D-Chicago) and approved in the Senate on May 2 by a vote of 34-18, SB 3249 mandates LGBT history be worked into U.S. and state history curriculum in K-12 classes. It now moves to the House where state Rep. Anna Moeller (D-Elgin) has introduced a similar measure, HB 5596.
Under the bill, eighth graders are required to be proficient in LGBT history in order to graduate to high school.
An earlier provision that required LGBT lessons in private schools as well was removed from the bill to lessen opposition.
Laurie Higgins of IFI said that extending the mandate to private schools would have killed the bill.
“You’re going to see an exodus from the public schools if this is enacted into law,” Higgins warned. “But the left doesn’t care as long as it keeps pushing its agenda.”
Supporters of the legislation say that teaching LGBT history is akin to teaching black history to combat racism. But Smith says the two are not alike and that teaching homosexuality is normal is not education but an indoctrination.
“Sexual orientation is not the same as ethnicity,” he said.
The bills are an initiative of Equality Illinois, a civil rights organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Illinoisans, and the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance, according to a press release issued in February by the groups.
If the bills become law, Illinois will join California as the only two states that will require the teaching of the history of the LGBTQ community. In November 2017, the California State Board of Education approved 10 textbooks for kindergarten through eighth-grade students that include coverage of the historical contributions of LGBT people. At the same time, the board rejected two books that did not include coverage of LGBT people.