Celebrity Dads Speak Out Against Don't Say Gay

Celebrity Gay Dads Are Responding to Florida's 'Don't Say Gay' Bill

Some of our most beloved celebrity gay dads have been speaking out on behalf of queer families in Florida, who are facing legislation that could stop their children from discussing their parents’ very existence in schools.

Florida’s so-called “Don’t Say Gay” bill passed both the state House and Senate in the last few weeks. If it is signed into law by Gov. Ron DeSantis, it would ban teachers from discussing “sexual orientation or gender identity in primary grade levels or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students.”

At the end of his late-night Bravo talk show ‘Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen’ on Tuesday, gay dad Andy Cohen took a few minutes to address “some personally disturbing news coming out of Florida.”

andy cohen

Cohen said the state’s Republicans “are pretending to solve a problem that doesn’t exist” by approving the “vague, hateful” legislation, calling the bill “one big dog whistle.”

“There is not a mass conspiracy of kindergarten teachers who are plotting to teach children to be gay… You’re scaring people into spewing hate and discrimination at the LGBTQ community,” Cohen said.

“If my son went to school and talked about his gay dad during class and the teacher engaged, under your vague, hateful law, that can be considered illegal?” he wondered

Cohen is a single dad to his 3-year-old son Ben, who was born via surrogacy. Cohen said the Don’t Say Gay bill, officially called the Parental Rights in Education bill, would have a real and detrimental impact on all children, especially those from families like his.

andy cohen

“[I thought] the whole point of sending our kids to school was to educate them and prepare them for the real world. Well, newsflash, the real world has gay people in it. It has people of all different gender identities,” he said.

“You can draft all the homophobic and transphobic bills you want, you’re not going to erase us,” Cohen continued. “I just wonder how many children and families need to suffer before our politicians figure that out.”

Author and gay dad-of-one Dan Savage has long been an advocate for gay parents, writing about the experience of adopting their son in 1998 in his renowned book “The Kid: What Happened After My Boyfriend and I Decided to Go Get Pregnant.” 

When the bill passed, Savage tweeted that the passage of such an unpopular and controversial piece of legislation will probably have the opposite effect than the bill's proponents had hoped.

“It’s a distressing time,” Savage added. “To help us get through it… I spend some time at the top of this week’s #SavageLovecast recommending some books and TV… and offering a dash of hope in the face of the #DontSayGay bills.”

Gay dad, actor, and comedian Alec Mapa retweeted a post by Florida student and gun control activist David Hogg, showing a video of students rallying against the legislation.

“Students across Florida are walking out in protest of Desantis’s don’t say gay bill. Tweet out your support with #LetFreeFloridaSayGay”.

Mapa also retweeted some truly wise words from Mark Hamil, also known as Luke Skywalker, in response to the Don’t Say Gay bill; “gay gay gay gay gay gay gay gay gay gay gay…..”

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, who recently adopted twins with husband Chasten, warned that if the bill passes into law, it would not just shut down discussions of gay people in classrooms; it would also harm queer youth throughout the state.

“The reason [the bill is dangerous] is that it tells youth who are different, or whose families are different, that there’s something wrong with them out of the gate,” Buttigieg said on CNN. “And I do think that contributes to the shocking levels of suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts among LGBTQ youth.”

The Don’t Say Gay bill is now awaiting Gov. Ron DeSantis’ approval, which is expected. If you want to sign the petition against the bill, click here. Or contact Gov. Ron DeSantis’ office to tell him how the legislation would impact families like ours in Florida.


Posted by Brit Smith

Brit Smith is a Staff Writer & Associate Editor at GWK. A native of London, England, Brit started her American adventure nannying and waiting tables in Texas in 2006, and eventually graduated magna cum laude from the University of California, Berkeley in 2017. Brit has previously written and created podcasts for WBZ NewsRadio, iHeart Media, and Different Leaf.

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