Suge in Anti-LGBT Laws

   While its not even half way through 2022, a record number of 238 anti-LGBT laws have been proposed by state lawmakers across the US. These laws primarily target LGBT youth, particularly transgender kids. The topics concerning the most bills are trans youth in sports, access to gender-affirming healthcare, and school curriculum restrictions. 

    The most well known of these bills is Florida’s “Paternal Rights Education” bill, also called the “Don’t Say Gay” bill by activists. According to NPR the bill states, “Classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity may not occur in kindergarten through grade 3 or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”

    The bill was signed into law on March 28 and has garnered backlash from various LGBT organizations such as the Trevor Project. Many of the bill’s supporters, and supporters of this legislation in general, support the bills on the grounds of “protecting children, parental rights, [and] religious freedom,” according to NBC News.

     Similar bills to the “Don’t Say Gay Bill” are continuing to circulate in other state’s legislation. In Idaho, the Idaho House of Representatives passed a bill that both medical personnel and parents who provide gender-affirming health care to their child could face up to life in prison. Similarity in Texas, Gov. Greg Abbot issued a directive in February that called for parent who allowed their child to access gender-affirming healthcare to be investigated in the count of child abuse. 

   Iowa, Tennessee, and Oklahoma have introduced over ten anti-LGBT bills in the 2022 legislative session. They are followed closely by West Virginia, South Carolina, and Arizona who have each introduced nine to ten bills. Only 17 of the 50 United States have not introduced anti-LGBT bills in this year’s session.