Tennessee State Senator Stacey
Campfield has reintroduced a bill that would prohibit the discussion
of sexual minorities in public schools.
Campfield first introduced his
so-called “don't say gay” bill while serving in the House.
Fellow Republican Bill Dunn will
sponsor the measure in the House.
The bill seeks to limit sexual
discussions in elementary and middle schools to heterosexuality.
Supporters say the bill is about
promoting age appropriate curriculum.
“If we're talking about
homosexuality, we are talking about specific acts that are going to
be unhealthy for anybody to engage in outside of marriage,” Matthew
Parsons, founder of the socially conservative group Something Better,
the local CBS affiliate.
In 2008, the 42-year-old unmarried
Campfield made clear his motivations: “We're not going to teach
about homosexuality, the homosexual lifestyle, the lesbian lifestyle,
the transgender lifestyle.”
Ben Byers of the Tennessee Equality
Project opposes the measure because “It limits what teachers and
students are able to discuss in the classroom.”
“It means they can't talk about gay
issues or sexuality even with students who may be gay or have [a] gay
family,” he said.
Campfield has previously introduced
controversial legislation, including a bill to issue death
certificates for aborted fetuses.
Representative Dunn is a member of the
Education Committee his bill has been assigned to. Republicans
control both chambers of Tennessee General Assembly.