March 21, 2022
Florida’s at it again. This time, they’re attempting to erase an entire community. Unfortunately for them, they’ve underestimated just how loud the LGBTQIA+ community’s voice is.
On March 8th, the Florida Senate passed the “Parental Rights in Education” bill, or, what it is more widely known as, the “Don’t Say Gay” bill. The bill, which was previously passed by the Florida House back in February, awaits the signature of Governor Ron DeSantis before it is officially enacted.
While the official name may seem supportive of parents and their rights in their child’s education, the language in the bill itself is dangerous and extremely harmful to the LGBTQIA+ community. It 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” because according to Florida, if you don’t talk about them, they don’t exist. How are teachers supposed to create a safe space for all children to learn and flourish, when the Florida government sets limits on who’s allowed to be in it?
As a recently-out bisexual artist, it’s important to me that my friends and family know where I stand on this issue. Making myself visible may also give courage and strength to people who aren’t out yet. I want them to know that I’m here for them and I will not allow LGBTQIA+ folks to be marginalized and erased.
In protest of this heinous bill, I am creating prints and embroidered patches and donating 20% of sales to SMYAL DC, a local DC organization that empowers and aids LGBTQIA+ youth. I wish I could donate more, but shipping even small packages is expensive right now. In the future, I hope to make a bigger financial impact with my artwork.
Patches and prints will be announced soon!