Rep. Jeff Van Drew, R-N.J., didn't take a wait-and-see approach to New Jersey's broader guidelines for teaching sex education in elementary schools, which includes instructing second graders about gender identity — without parental consent.
Van Drew's My Child, My Choice bill proposal emphasizes the need for parental consent in delicate matters and fortifies parents' rights to minimize their children's exposure to adult-like materials before the age of 8.
"My God, we're losing so many of our freedoms in America under these left-wing, woke philosophies that are literally taking our children away from the parents," Van Drew told Newsmax Wednesday afternoon, while appearing on "American Agenda" with hosts Bob Sellers and Katrina Szish.
According to Van Drew, under the leadership of Gov. Chris Murphy, a Democrat, New Jersey schools will be mandated to teach elementary-aged children about sex, masturbation, gender-reassignment surgery, changing their names, and using bathrooms different from their biological gender.
And it will happen without parental consent, lamented the New Jersey congressman.
"No, the parents have to be involved," said Van Drew, a former Democrat who switched political allegiances during the Trump administration.
As Newsmax reported, New Jersey law allows any family to opt out of any part of instruction in health, family life, or sex education, as long as a child's parent or guardian informs the school in writing that the instruction conflicts with their conscience or their moral or religious beliefs.
In a nutshell, the My Child, My Choice Act, which 20 other House Republicans co-sponsored, including 14 original co-sponsors, offers the following guidelines:
- Teachers would be required to get written consent from parents whenever lessons on gender identity, sexual orientation, or transgender studies are presented in a class setting.
- If a specific lesson doesn't garner the approval of at least 50% of the in-class parents, the lecture must be scrapped.
- If a specific lesson draws more than 50% parental approval, that school must provide students whose parents didn't consent with alternative learning materials.
- Students, parents, and teachers are permitted to submit reports to the secretary of education anytime an infringement of this policy occurs.
- If the education secretary determines the school or teacher did not comply with the bill's requirements, the school would subsequently be stripped of federal funding the following academic year.
On Newsmax, Van Drew admitted to having greater faith in the national response to this legislation, compared to the local level. "I'm going to fight this stuff like hell ... do everything humanly possible to stop it," said Van Drew, who's up for reelection this November.
As one national example, Van Drew praised the work of Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, a Republican leader, in terms of restricting transgender issues and sexual exploitation matters in public schools for that state.
On this issue, Van Drew said, "New Jersey bad, Virginia good."
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