Tag Archives: AB 606

LGBT Related Bills in the Closing Days

Dan Walters (he of the global warming agnosticism) did a little summary of LGBT related issues in the Legislature.  I’m just going to borrow a bit from him, and add a little explanation of my own.,

  • SB 1437: The Curriculum law.  After Arnold’s veto threat, Kuehl has gutted the bill of the textbook provisions.  Now the only thing that remains is the provision against “reflecting adversely” in the classroom.  It will pass the assembly and will be sent to the veto.  I’m not sure if Schwarzenegger will sign it though.  There are pressures on him from both the left and the right on this one.

    The ironicly named Campaign for Children and Families has their spin on the “reflecting adversely”, which I find pretty humorous:

    As a result, several school activities will be deemed to “reflect adversely” on transsexuality, bisexuality, and homosexuality:

    • School proms (Prom “kings” and “queens” could not be gender-specific)
    • Gender-specific sports (“Boys Basketball” would be “discriminatory” against transsexuals)
    • Cheerleading (Can you say “transsexual cheerleaders”?)

    Personally I love the rhetorical question about “transsexual cheerleaders”.  It’s quite the bugaboo for them.  Unfortunately for them, there are no provisions against transgenedered cheerleaders now.  In fact no restrictions on gender at all.  Another funny story here, when the Speaker was making the amendments to the bill on the floor, Dennis Mountjoy challenged even the gutting of the bill.  I happened to be in the Assembly at the time.  Mounjoy stood up and said that he didn’t want his name on anything related to SB 1437 at all.  So, a little more gay baiting from the man who went on a talk show with a gay host and called homosexuality deviant.

  • “Senate Bill 1441, also by Kuehl, which would prohibit discrimination in public programs based on sexual orientation, similar to provisions now barring discrimination by race or gender, sent to Schwarzenegger for signature or veto on Thursday.”(SacBee 8/14/06) 
  • “Assembly Bill 606, by Assemblyman Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, which would require school districts to implement programs to combat harassment and discrimination based on sexual orientation, with the threat of withholding state aid for noncompliance, pending in Senate after Assembly approval.” (SacBee 8/14/06)

    This is another big bugaboo for the Far Right.  They think for some reason that this ends their “protection against the homosexual agenda.” Well, ultimately it works to end discrimination, which I suppose is bad for them.  The more bigots the better as far as the “Campaign for Children and Families” is concerned.

  • “Assembly Bill 1207, by Assemblyman Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, which would change the state’s voluntary code of campaign conduct to include a ban on negative appeals to prejudice based on sexual orientation, awaiting final vote in Assembly.”(SacBee 8/14/06)
  • A bill very similar to AB1207 was vetoed last year  by Schwarzenegger.  I don’t think he could possibly sign it.  It would be quite hard to campaign for a gay marriage ban while not bashing gays.  It’s pretty much part and parcel of the GOP’s game.  Not likely that we’ll see a Republican sign that one.  Attacking gays is pretty much the last refuge of the bigots.  It’s still acceptable to the GOP, and it helps them get elected in places like Monrovia (home to the Mountjoy clan).

Dan Walters on LGBT Harassment in School’s: Nothing Moral about Stopping it

Dan Walters doesn’t dig on “mandating propaganda.” Alright then, well, I assume Mr. Walters was in an outrage when Sec 51204.5, which mandates the study of various ethnic groups, first became law and was studiously pursuing the revision of the entire law. I’m sure he was also up in arms about the provision of law which requires that, “No teacher shall give instruction nor shall a school district sponsor any activity that reflects adversely upon persons because of their race…”  Well, no you say?  He only began criticizing the law when Sheila Kuehl introduced legislation to include the LGBT community in its provisions?  Well, isn’t that convenient.

Sure, Dan will point out that he was livid, livid I tell you, about the Hindu American Foundation suing the state.  Back in April Dan summarized the case as: “Implicitly, the suit is telling state officials that the textbooks must be altered to reflect the Hindu American Foundation’s version of the ethnic group’s history – regardless of what that history may truly be.”

Well, let’s go look what remedy the complaint actually sought…an educated, balanced perspective rather than an ill-informed and biased one. Amongst other things, some of which are shall we say, a bit more propagandist, the complaint seeks a fair description of Hindu beliefs as Hindus beleive. (The exact language: “description of Hindu theology and its understanding of divinity be consistent with the understanding of practicing Hindus”) gasp!! These people want to descibe their religion accurately! How terrible that would be.

But the more intersting part of Walters’ argument regards Lloyd Levine’s AB 606.  After describing the provisions, Walters goes on to inform the reader of Levine’s thoughts. Wow, who knew the Bee had a columnist with ESP?!

Assemblyman Lloyd Levine, D-Los Angeles, is carrying Assembly Bill 606, which has moved through the Assembly and the Senate Education Committee on party-line votes. Ostensibly, it would require school districts to be more proactive in preventing discrimination and harassment of those with non-heterosexual orientations, building on a 1999 Kuehl-written law that made such discrimination and harassment illegal.

A few passages in the bill, however, are generating political heat from conservative “pro-family” groups. One would give the state schools superintendent enforcement powers, including the ability to withhold state funds for any school district deemed to be insufficiently diligent, and suggests that classroom instruction would be a factor. Another provision, just eight words long, would repeal a provision of Kuehl’s 1999 legislation, added to gain its enactment, that exempted curriculum from scrutiny in harassment and discrimination allegations.

Together, those sections of the Levine bill, opponents say, are a backdoor way of requiring pro-gay instruction similar to what Kuehl’s current bill mandates. They’re calling on Schwarzenegger to reject it as well. The criticism about the bill’s true intent is probably accurate.

Treating all people, regardless of sexual orientation, with absolute equality is one thing. In seeking such equality in marriages and other fields, gay rights advocates, it could be said, are occupying the moral high ground. There’s nothing moral about legally mandating propaganda of any kind in the classroom.  (SacBee 7/14/06)

Levine’s AB 606 seeks to deter “discrimination and harassment.”  The 1999 bill excepted the curriculum.  Why? Well, ask the Right.  But why should we accept harassment and discrimination in the curriculum? AB 606 doesn’t request a whitewashing of say…the AIDS epidemic. It merely empowers the State Superintendent to ensure that students of California are receiving a fair curriculum, not propaganda.  AB 606 helps to ensure a hospitable environment for all of California’s students, and that’s a goal we all should share.