You'd think that something as simple as legislation to prevent bullying would be an easy lift for politicians on both sides of the aisle, but the religious right has managed to interject bullshit into the conversation yet again.
In what has become a near annual rite at the Louisiana Legislature, civil rights and gay rights advocates failed Wednesday to win approval for a more detailed and, advocates say, stronger anti-bullying law for public schools. Rep. Pat Smith, D-Baton Rouge, pitched House Bill 407 as necessary, given continued evidence of bullying, including a recent suicide by a Point Coupee teenager who had complained to adults many times about being mistreated by her classmates.
Opponents, lead by the conservative Louisiana Family Forum and aides to Gov. Bobby Jindal, argued that the measure went too far by listing perceived or actual characteristics that should not subject a student to bullying.
The committee voted 10-5 to strip the bill of those key changes, which included sexual orientation. Smith shelved the measure, saying the action gutted its intent.
Louisiana Family Forum President Gene Mills, who said he's an ordained minister, told lawmakers, that the bill "introduces sexual politics" into the classroom and would discriminate against religious expression. "You could make a criminal bully out of a child who holds an orthodox view of Christianity."
A 17 year old girl recently took her own life in Louisiana after being bullied continuously. In Indiana a similar bill was also killed after religious right objections shortly after the suicide of Billy Lucas helped inspire the It Gets Better campaign.
These fuckers have no shame.
(Bullying clipart via Bigstock)