Students at Winter Park High and across Florida walked out of class Monday in protest of the Parental Rights in Education bill, aka the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
A video of hundreds of students gathered outside Winter Park High in Orlando has been making the rounds on social media.
Students across Florida are walking out in protest of Desantis’s don’t say gay bill
Tweet out your support with #LetFreeFloridaSayGay
— David Hogg ? (@davidhogg111) March 7, 2022
In it, the students chant “We say gay” in protest of the bill, which would prohibit classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in kindergarten through third grade, or in any grade if it is “in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”
Here’s another video, shot by student and protest organizer Will Larkins:
WE SAY GAY pic.twitter.com/XJkQJzAer5
— Will Larkins (@ProudTwinkie) March 7, 2022
Opponents of the bill argue it will make life harder for LGBTQ youth, who already face higher rates of bullying and increased suicide risk compared to their straight, cisgender peers.
The walkouts come as the state Senate prepares to discuss the legislation. It already passed in the state House, and Gov. DeSantis has voiced his support, indicating he’s likely to sign it if it reaches his desk.
Here’s how folks are reacting:
— Paula Cobia (@PaulaCobia) March 7, 2022
— Melissa Mark-Viverito (@MMViverito) March 7, 2022
— azeeestor ????????? (@azeeestor) March 7, 2022
— Farris Thompson (@FarrisThompson) March 7, 2022
— Aaron ???? (@BloodGrin946) March 7, 2022
— Bruce Mirken (@BruceMirken) March 7, 2022
— Hobbie???? #CodifyRoe #GND #M4A (@Hobbie_VK) March 7, 2022
Standing with my community. How dare the FL legislator even consider this hateful homophobic bill, #LetFreeFloridaSayGay
— Mink Kitty (@mink_kitty) March 7, 2022