Bobby Jindal | Discrimination | Louisiana | News

Louisiana Lawmakers Don't Think Gay People Get Bullied

BullyRemember earlier when I wondered whether Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni lived on another planet for denying that anti-gay discrimination exists? Well, Louisiana conservatives may live in that outer space realm, as well.

Via Joe.My.God comes word that a House committee in Louisiana rejected an LGBT anti-bullying bill because they basically don't think being gay would invoke a bully's ire.

...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.

Current law requires local school boards to write policies that prohibit "harassment, intimidation and bullying." It defines those terms, in part, as, "any intentional gesture or written, verbal or physical act that a reasonable person under the circumstances should know will have the effective of harming a student or damaging his property or placing a student in reasonable fear of harm."

Smith proposed several tweaks and additions, but the most pertinent passage extended the definition to acts "a reasonable person under the circumstances would perceive as being motivated by an actually or perceived characteristic, including but not limited to race, color, ancestry, national origin, religion, exceptionalities, physical disability, intellectual disability, developmental disability, mental illness or emotional health disorder, language ability, sexual orientation, physical characteristics, gender identity, gender expression, political ideas or affiliations, socioeconomic status or association with others identified by such characteristics."

Louisiana Family Forum president Gene Mills said the bill "introduces sexual politics" into the classroom, according to The Times-Picayune. I don't know what kind of atmosphere Mills, Jindal and their friends have on this hypothetical planet, but it's not oxygen.

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Comments

  1. Someone needs to ask when the body count will be high enough for them to be satisfied.

    Posted by: Mickey | Apr 19, 2012 1:50:10 PM


  2. Louisiana is the Africa of North America. Mississippi is Iran. Arkansas is Croatia, and so on. Don't expect too much. Oxygen goes both ways.

    Posted by: UFFDA | Apr 19, 2012 1:52:50 PM


  3. I call Louisiana 'Uganda on the Gulf'.

    Posted by: Johnson | Apr 19, 2012 2:04:11 PM


  4. Hello my friend! I want to say that this article is awesome, nice written and include almost all vital info. I would like to see more posts like this.

    Posted by: essay-writing-service | Apr 19, 2012 2:15:44 PM


  5. Bobby Jindal is a COWARD, and as such, would make a perfect running mate for Mittens.

    Posted by: says I | Apr 19, 2012 2:18:22 PM


  6. Thanks for share it keep it up.

    Posted by: academia-research review | Apr 19, 2012 2:22:37 PM


  7. I don't really see anything wrong with the law as it is currently worded. What difference does the motive make if the punishment is the same?

    And Louisiana is a wonderful state, just about the only one in the country with any real character in this materialistic, pop-culture-infested, fast-food-consuming monolith of a country.

    Regardless, the solution to bullying for gay teens and men is to man up and defend themselves, which they are perfectly capable of doing--not passing laws that will make no difference.

    Posted by: Rick | Apr 19, 2012 3:23:53 PM


  8. I guess it's not enough to constantly denigrate gay men, so let's all take out our aggression on 49 entire states.

    Posted by: Mousie | Apr 19, 2012 3:28:45 PM


  9. UFFDA, Croatia does not belong on your list.

    Furthermore, the only people who should be bullied are trolls who enforce gender stereotypes. All others should be protected by proactive policies and education.

    Posted by: KevinVT | Apr 19, 2012 3:35:39 PM


  10. @KEVINVT Every time you and Ernie post, I understand better why the University of Vermont is the only state university in the country without a real football program. LOL.

    Posted by: Rick | Apr 19, 2012 4:00:39 PM


  11. Does it surprise me that the fundamentally deranged right wing Christians and their sycophantic ass kissing Republican cohorts are uninterested, unconcerned, uncaring and oblivious by/to the bulling of gay/transgendered/questioning children. Not one bit. These people are so adrift from the true ideals of compassion, love, kindness, and respect that they debase the very nature of Jesus, humanity and justice for all.

    Posted by: StevyD | Apr 19, 2012 5:22:20 PM


  12. These bastards can and will rot in Hell seeing "suffer the little children" isn't meant to be taken literally. These people are pure evil and how I wish I could be there when they finally have that chat with Peter.

    Posted by: Michael | Apr 19, 2012 5:41:20 PM


  13. "Someone needs to ask when the body count will be high enough for them to be satisfied"

    Exactly. I understand Christians believing that gay behavior is sinful. What I can't understand is why they aren't taking into account that bullying is also sinful. A general anti-bullying camaign would be helpful and wouldn't have to target any one particular group of youth. But it would have a disproportionate effect for the good on gay youth, who face more bullying than most kids do.

    Posted by: Mary | Apr 19, 2012 6:42:47 PM


  14. Real football? girlfriend, please. Take your steroids and go to bed.

    LA ranks last in everything except obesity. VT has equal rights. Easy choice. Though the NOLA food is excellent, and my husband is from NO, so we have a soft spot. Just need to get rid of the rest of the state.

    Posted by: Ernie | Apr 19, 2012 11:16:29 PM


  15. Let me tell you something about the current state of Louisiana politics and education: Our governor, Piyush "Bobby" Jindal, is pretty much resented by our schoolteachers for gutting public school funding to may for privatized education, which shouldn't even be receiving state funds because it's PRIVATIZED education. He has no interest in improving public education which is supposed to set no agenda. He wants to have more privatized education, which is free to set any agenda it chooses (read: Christian). He claims that he once took part in an EXORCISM. He is as fanatic as they come. There will be no improvements in the bullying situation as long as he is in office and THERE IS NO TERM LIMIT in Louisiana. That means that Louisiana is destined to remain a redneckistan backwater for possibly another decade or two to come. No parents of gay children should move to Louisiana if they want their children to remain safe. Homophobia will no doubt be taught in these new privatized schools as a matter of course.

    Posted by: ophu | Apr 20, 2012 1:10:17 AM


  16. Rick, the Real Rick, you crack me up with your insistent willingness to gore the fey gays. I can't really join you in that because I have known a few effeminate or queenly types who A. can't help it and B. who are superb people of depth and accomplishment. So you are cruel and do go too far. However, as a foil to the presumptions and posturing of this on line crowd you are priceless and invaluable, the irritant that makes the pearl which, in this case, is to remind the clones, (or make them suspect), that a good number of gay men live, nay thrive, outside the dreary box of stereotype and stereotypic opinion, which is true.

    And ERNIE even when provoked you remain a gentleman...one whose point of view is often both balanced and well-thought out, I learn from it. Thank you.

    Posted by: UFFDA | Apr 20, 2012 2:20:16 AM


  17. Rick, the Real Rick, you crack me up with your insistent willingness to gore the fey gays. I can't really join you in that because I have known a few effeminate or queenly types who A. can't help it and B. who are superb people of depth and accomplishment. So you are cruel and do go too far. However, as a foil to the presumptions and posturing of this on line crowd you are priceless and invaluable, the irritant that makes the pearl which, in this case, is to remind the clones, (or make them suspect), that a good number of gay men live, nay thrive, outside the dreary box of stereotype and stereotypic opinion, which is true.

    And ERNIE even when provoked you remain a gentleman...one whose point of view is often both balanced and well-thought out, I learn from it. Thank you.

    Posted by: UFFDA | Apr 20, 2012 2:20:18 AM


  18. I imagine Rick wasn't much different on the playground.

    Posted by: ophu | Apr 20, 2012 2:42:55 AM


  19. Louisiana is the most backward "bubba" state in the union. With stores from coast to coast, I opened one store in Louisiana and after 90 days I decided it was the worst mistake of my life. I closed it and have not set foot in Louisiana since, and never will again.

    Posted by: christopher | Apr 20, 2012 5:24:36 AM


  20. Thanks, UFFDA.

    Rick's POV will never change because it's so entrenched in closeted thinking (gay rights mean little to people in the closet since you have to be out to fight for and take advantage of gay rights progress, hence the misguided obsession with masculinity, an obsession that thrives within the shame of the closet . . . etc.) but I do believe there are many ways to be gay, ones informed by the place in which we live. I live openly in a tiny, tolerant town. Not everyone has that luxury though many are brave enough to live openly anyway. While everyone has to decide for themselves when to come out of the closet, the closet is a trap, and closeted thinking--the kind our benighted friend Rick is victim of--is a bigger trap. As gay rights progress continues, the closeted will only feel more separate and threatened by that progress because it excludes them.

    BTW, don't give up on Croatia. It's a beautiful place, and while they have a ways to go (especially in Split in the aftermath of the parade violence last year spearheaded by, surprise, "real football" hooligans), there are smart and brave gay activists we met there who are making a difference.

    Posted by: Ernie | Apr 20, 2012 10:28:35 AM


  21. @UFFDA The thing ism they can "help it"--and that is the notion we have to get rid of--because perpetuating it perpetuates the kind of behavior that causes bullying in the first place. I can assure you that there is nothing that prevents a physically-fit teenaged boy or man from defending himself other than his own psychology.

    @OPHU Actually, it is true that I was the Alpha Male of my neighborhood when growing up, so perhaps that is why I simply cannot buy the notion that being gay causes one to be a sissy and a wimp. All the straight boys were scared of me and pretty much followed my lead....and I didn't and don't consider myself to be "hyper-masculine", just normally so

    @Ernie I don't know how you define being "in the closet." I have never tried to hide my sexual orientation, but I have never flaunted it, either. I am sure that every member of my family knows that I am gay, even though it has never been explicitly acknowledged.....and I am sure that most of my co-workers suspect I may be, too.

    I have never pretended to have any sexual interest in women, nor have I ever dated women, for appearance's sake or otherwise, in any context whatsoever.

    So unless you define "in the closet" as being anyone who does not have a rainbow flag flying in their front yard or one who goes around telling everybody about their sex lives, then I really don't know what you are talking about.

    Posted by: Rick | Apr 20, 2012 11:33:42 AM


  22. Oy vey. Living openly is not about flying rainbow flags or yakking about your sex life to strangers. Living openly is about not being afraid to publicly fight for your rights with your own name and your own face. It's about having your family, friends, neighbors and co-workers know that your date/boyfriend/partner/husband is not your business partner or your roommate. Straight people acknowledge their sexuality in myriad ways every day without thinking twice about it. Gay people shouldn't have to think twice about it, either.

    The one thing living honestly and openly doesn't have to do with is how masculine or feminine you come across in your daily life: the obsession with gender presentation is generally confined to the insecure and the homophobic. In other words, real men don't worry about their own masculinity or the masculinity of others.

    Closeted people are threatened by gay rights because gay rights are useless to the invisible. Invisibility is the greatest enemy to gay rights progress.

    Posted by: Ernie | Apr 20, 2012 1:02:34 PM


  23. @Ernie Dude, let me explain something to you. You don't need to worry about "rights" or "fighting for them" if people like you and respect you.....because if they do, then you won't need to try to force them to treat you decently by passing legislation. Get it?

    And you are right, real men don't "worry" about their masculinity because it comes naturally, but they will not ever accept or respect effeminate men who, if they run from fights and/or will not stand up for themselves.....will be worthless if called on to defend the society, on a battlefield or elsewhere.

    In all seriousness, you should try to extract yourself from the gay world you inhabit and venture away from Vermont and into the Heartland and you might understand things a bit better than you do.

    Posted by: Rick | Apr 20, 2012 1:51:34 PM


  24. @Ricketc. Save your explanations. Don't need them. Invisible people don't get rights. Visible people do. It's not rocket science. We have equal rights in VT because visible people from all across the gender spectrum made their case to the courts and legislature and won. (The leader of the marriage movement was just appointed to our Supreme Court. Our openly gay legislators spearheaded the equality.) Without visibility it wouldn't have happened. Had nothing to do with masculinity or lack thereof. You can be the butchest guy on the planet, but the closet is a place a weakness and cowardice. It's always unmanly.

    I didn't realize VT was a "gay world"--I'll have to tell all my straight neighbors and family and our cows the news! Won't they be surprised!

    Posted by: Ernie | Apr 20, 2012 4:22:20 PM


  25. http://www.recallbobbyjindal.com/_index.php


    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Recall-Bobby-Jindal/151244284898516

    A recall effort against Gov. Jindal is underway in Louisiana. Any support offered to help make our state a more equitable and tolerant place is greatly appreciated. My partner and I are taking a stand and are collecting signatures. Yes, there are LGBT people in Louisiana.

    Posted by: John | Apr 21, 2012 10:27:14 AM


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