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Thursday, May 25, 2006

California Govenor Says He'll Veto 'Gay History' Bill

By Susan Jones Senior Editor
May 25, 2006

( - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger reportedly plans to veto a "gay history" bill if it reaches his desk.

A conservative advocacy group that led opposition to the bill called the report good news for parents:

The bill, SB 1437, would have required social studies textbooks used in California public schools to include "the role and contributions of...people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender...with particular emphasis on portraying the role of these groups in contemporary society."

The bill also would have barred textbooks and school-sponsored activities from "reflecting adversely" on transsexuality, bisexuality, or homosexuality.

Conservative critics said the bill would have forced schools to promote same-sex marriage and even sex-change procedures.

"The governor believes that school curriculum should include all important historical figures, regardless of orientation," Schwarzenegger's director of communications, Adam Mendelsohn, told Thursday's Sacramento Bee. "However, he does not support the Legislature micromanaging curriculum."

A conservative advocacy group that lobbied against SB 1437 said it is pleased that Gov. Schwarzenegger is listening to the concerns of parents.

But that's not the end of the story, the Campaign for Children and Families said: "Now the governor needs to pledge to veto the two remaining sexual indoctrination bills, AB 606 and AB 1056. Parents and grandparents are demanding it."

"This terrible trio of bills would promote cross-dressing and sex-change operations to children as young as kindergarten," said CCF President Randy Thomasson. "Schools should be about academics, not about promoting alternative sexual lifestyles to impressionable schoolchildren."

AB 606 would require school districts to establish and publicize an antidiscrimination and antiharassment policy that is based on specified characteristics, including "actual or perceived gender identify and sexual orientation."

In other words, conservative critics say, the bill would withhold state funds from any school district that does not adequately promote transsexuality, bisexuality, or homosexuality in its school policies.

AB 1056 would spend taxpayer money on a "Tolerance Education Pilot Program," providing one-time $25,000 grants to ten schools that would either purchase instructional materials or provide staff development -- "to promote tolerance and intergroup relations."


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