Letter: Thistlethwaite’s misguided reading of Florida law | VailDaily.com

Letter: Thistlethwaite’s misguided reading of Florida law

I was dismayed to read Rev. Dr. Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite’s recent column and to see how poorly she portrayed the Florida issue and how readily she made it about hate. Like most liberals that can’t make a good argument for or against an issue, they simply make the issue about hate or racism to shut down any debate. The issue in Florida is twofold: First, do Florida parents/voters have the right to be notified or intervene when it comes to certain curriculum that may or may not be appropriate for their young children and should a large multi-national corporation not pay its fair share in taxes.

The law reinforces the fundamental right of parents to make decisions regarding the upbringing and control of their children and what they are taught in publicly-funded schools. Strip out the content or replace it with something like the brutality of the Holocaust, simply for argument’s sake. Whether it is the brutality of the Holocaust or gender identity, parents/voters have an inalienable right to be notified of such curriculum — especially when it is being taught to K-3 students and to weigh in on whether it is age appropriate for those students.

I know I don’t want my kids seeing the atrocities perpetrated on the Jews by Hitler until they are old enough to emotionally digest that information, nor do I want them learning about gender reassignment or sexuality in the classroom at the impressionable age of 5. There is a time and a place to be exposed to that information, and that should be at the discretion of the parents. This law does not disparage or alienate any protected class, nor is it homophobic. It is simply affording parents a say in the curriculum in public school that is being taught to their 5-, 6-, 7- and 8-year-old kids that may not be able to fully comprehend such complex topics. How is being involved in our kids’ school or providing parents a say in their kid’s curriculum hateful?

Secondly, why should Disney Corporation, a for-profit company, be allowed to soak our families at the cost of $109 per person per day for admission to their park and be exempt from Florida taxes and have the right to self-governance? I certainly understand that back in 1967 it made sense to induce Disney to build the world’s greatest amusement park on Central Florida swamp land, but that special treatment should have sunset a long time ago and not been allowed to exist in perpetuity. It costs Florida and the surrounding counties a lot of money to build and maintain the infrastructure that feeds Disney World and its time the Disney corporation paid its fair share regardless of the social issue that is being portrayed negatively and incorrectly in the public square as the “Don’t say Gay Law.”

Gary Elzweig


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