A Tennessee bill that proposes forcing schools to tell parents if their children have talked to a teacher or counselor about being gay has set the stage for a new fight over social issues in the state legislature. Opponents call the legislation unnecessary and a government intrusion in family matters. State Senator Stacey Campfield’s measure is already drawing attention.
With Tennessee lawmakers on the verge of adjourning several weeks earlier than usual, end-of-session wrangling is as intense as ever. Budget disagreements between the two chambers led to the first conference committee on the spending plan since the acrimonious debate over the income tax more than a decade ago. And several contentious measures, including the guns-in-parking-lots bill, could still crop up before the Assembly concludes its business. The Knoxville News Sentinel reports the "Don't Say Gay" bill will won't come back up though.
A proposal that would ban the teaching of gay issues to Tennessee elementary and middle school students is once again advancing in the state House. The "Don't Say Gay" bill passed the House Education Committee Tuesday by one vote.
Supporters of a Tennessee measure to ban the teaching of gay issues to elementary and middle school students have put off consideration of the bill after being told Governor Bill Haslam is concerned about the bill. The start of yesterday's House Education Committee meeting was delayed 15 minutes while Republicans huddled in Speaker Beth Harwell's office with an unidentified member of the Haslam administration. Republican Representative Joey Hensley later announced he was putting off the bill for a week.