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LA governor signs bill to protect speech, conscience at public schools

School officials fired me because I expressed genuine concern—as a parent—about a book in my kids' school

The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Matt Sharp, director of the ADF Center for Public Policy, regarding Louisiana Gov. Jeff Landry’s signing Wednesday of HB 121, a bill that prohibits government entities from forcing public school employees and students to use inaccurate names and pronouns in violation of their sincerely held beliefs:

“No one should lose their job or face punishment at school for declining to say something they believe is false. Words and language carry meaning, and when used properly, they communicate truth about the world. Yet forcing individuals to say things that are false—such as inaccurate pronouns and titles—imposes real harm on the speaker. In no world is it acceptable for schools to force good teachers out of a job all for the sake of promoting gender ideology to vulnerable children, nor is it right to punish a child for not wanting to participate in that ideology. Now and always, there are only two sexes—male and female—and denying this basic, scientific truth not only rejects reality but hurts kids. With this legislation, Louisiana is rightfully stepping into the gap to protect children and freedom of conscience. We commend Rep. Raymond Crews, Sen. Alan Seabaugh, and the Louisiana Legislature for their leadership on this legislation and Gov. Landry for signing it into law. Freedom of speech and religion includes the freedom not to endorse messages contrary to one’s core beliefs, and protecting these essential pillars of freedom benefits all of society.”

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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Matt Sharp
Matt Sharp
Senior Counsel, Director of Center for Public Policy
Matt Sharp serves as senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, where he is the director of the Center for Public Policy.