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At a pride month event at the White House Wednesday, President Biden targeted Republican states – specifically Florida and Texas – for allegedly homophobic legislation, as he unveiled an executive order to combat such laws.
“I don’t have to tell you about the ultra-MAGA agenda attacking families and our freedoms. Three-hundred discriminatory bills introduced in states across this country,” Biden said. “In Texas, knocking on front doors to harass and investigate rents who are raising transgender children. In Florida, going after Mickey Mouse, for God’s sake.”
Biden’s remarks came after the White House announced the president will sign an executive order to fight state legislation that it views as homophobic and to support conversion therapy, “LGBTQI + families” and more.
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According to the White House, one provision will instruct the Dertment of Education to address “the imcts of state laws that target LGBTQI + students.”
The Education Dertment will also be charged “with releasing a sample school policy for achieving full inclusion for LGBTQI + students.”
That rt of the executive order is likely in reaction to a Florida law that banned lessons on sexual identity and gender orientation for students in third grade and younger. Liberal opponents of the bill branded it the “don’t say gay” bill.
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Javier Gomez, a gay teen who just graduated from high school in Miami, Fla., Spoke at the White House event, detailing his coming out process. He said his openly gay 5th-grade teacher’s guidance helped make that process easier for him. But, Gomez said, “hateful” GOP legislation recently ssed in Florida may make that harder for other gay children.
“I fear other students in Florida and across the country will not be able to get the same support because of the hateful legislation like the don’t say gay bill,” he said. “But my presence here is a testament that we are fighting back.”
Biden also touted efforts to diversify his administration and fight discrimination more broadly.
“I think we have more LGBTQ + people than any administration or every administration combined,” Biden said. “A record number of out and proud appointees at every single level of our government.”
Biden also directed a message toward young people.
“My message to all the young people: Just be you,” Biden said. “You are loved. You are heard. You are understood. You do belong.”