Maine's attorney general has called
claims that a gay marriage law would force schools to teach about
being gay baseless.
Attorney General Janet
Mills released a statement Thursday dismissing the claims of
proponents of Question 1. If adopted on November 3, the referendum
would repeal the state's gay marriage law approved by lawmakers in
The group Stand for Marriage Maine
organized to put the gay marriage law up for a vote.
In television ads, literature and its
website the group claims that the law is about teaching children
about being gay. It is the same successful strategy used in
California, where voters approved a gay marriage ban last year.
In one of the group's television ads, a
woman seated next to her husband says, “After Massachusetts
legalized gay marriage, our son came home and told us that the school
taught him that boys can marry other boys.” In a tight close up,
the woman adds: “He's in the second grade.”
The ad's tagline says: “Vote yes on
Question 1 to prevent homosexual marriage from being taught in Maine
In her statement, Mills plainly
disagrees with the group's claims.
“Whatever the benefits and burdens of
the civil institution of marriage, the state's definition of marriage
has no bearing on the curricula in our public schools, either under
current law or under LD 1020 [the gay marriage law],” Mills wrote
in her response to Education Commissioner Susan Gendron, who had
requested the legal analysis.
Mills goes on to soothe concerned
parents by reminding them that Maine law would accommodate for
persons with religious beliefs.
“[P]arents with religious beliefs
which prohibit dancing might seek accommodation for their child
regarding physical education classes that involved dancing,” she
Officials for Stand for Marriage Maine
have not commented on Mills' statement. However, the campaign has
previously raised concerns about the attorney general's objectivity
because of her support for gay marriage.