Our new book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. Among other things, it discusses the state of the parties. The state of the GOP is not good.
Instead of a tweet thread about the unseriousness of some members of Congress in this serious time, I just decided to tell you on video: pic.twitter.com/TPJfofOKra— Adam Kinzinger (@AdamKinzinger) April 5, 2022
Tom Ammiano has heard rhetoric like this before.
Ammiano was teaching in San Francisco when he came out as gay the mid-1970s during a fight for workplace protections.
“The name-calling was not only on the playground but within the teachers lounge,” Ammiano told VICE News.
Social conservatives soon launched a statewide campaign to bar gay and lesbian people from working in California public schools, warning that they were trying to “recruit” children to the “gay lifestyle” and prey on them sexually. Those pushing for the ban weren’t subtle with their message, naming their organization “Defend Our Children.”
Now, as social conservatives introduce a raft of anti-LGBTQ legislation focused on classrooms and LGBTQ teens, like Florida’s new “Don’t Say Gay” law, they’ve resurrected some rhetoric that’s strikingly similar to that used during the 1978 campaign that Ammiano, Harvey Milk, Sally Miller Gearhart, and many others organized to defeat. They claim that anyone who mentions LGBTQ issues in the classroom is sexually “grooming” children, conflating a term that’s long been used to describe pedophiles training kids to accept their sexual assault to smear their opponents as sexual predators.
“There’s a kind of a déjà vu,” said Ammiano, who later was elected as a Democrat to the San Francisco board of supervisors and the California state assembly. “These people are insinuating that you're going to come into the classroom and expose your genitals and talk about sex acts.”
Marjorie Taylor Greene claims 3 Republican Senators (Murkowski, Collins, and Romney) are “pro-pedophile” because they voted for Judge Kentanji Brown Jackson. pic.twitter.com/SKi9Do2l7H— PatriotTakes 🇺🇸 (@patriottakes) April 5, 2022
GOP-backed bill in Tennessee would eliminate any age requirements for marriage, a move that critics are calling hypocritical amid baseless Republican accusations that the LGBTQ+ community is attempting "groom" and "sexualize" school children.
H.B. 233 gives Tennesseans "an alternative form of marriage" between individuals who have a "conscientious objection to the current pathway," according to state Rep. Tom Leatherwood, the bill's Republican sponsor.
As WKRN reported, the GOP bill, first introduced in January, establishes a common-law marriage between "one man" and "one woman" but omits any age requirements for the union, an omission that Democrats have blasted.
"I don't think any normal person thinks we shouldn't have an age requirement for marriage," said Democratic state Rep. Mike Stewart. "It should not be there as it's basically a get out of jail free card for people who are basically committing statutory rape," Stewart. I mean it's completely ridiculous, so that's another reason why this terrible bill should be eliminated."