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HuffPo labels Florida the “anti-gay state”! Why?

In May 2013 the Huffington Post reported, “Florida lawmakers let two important LGBT rights bills languish this year, sealing the state’s reputation as an ‘anti-gay state‘ for another 12 months. One bill created a statewide domestic partnership registry, uniting a patchwork of select municipalities that grant health care visitation, among other rights, to same-sex couples.”

FL Senator Nancy Detert, District 28.

State Senator Nancy Detert (R- District 28)  has become the champion for a statewide domestic partnership registry. She was the swing committee vote on CS/SB 196: Domestic Partners.

The Florida gay rights group pushing for the creation of domestic partnership registries is called “Equality Florida“. Equality Florida issues are: Adoption, Discrimination, Family Recognition, Hate Crimes, Student Safety/GSA and Voter Mobilization.

The Student safety issue for Equality Florida is support for the US Department of Education anti-bullying campaign in public schools. CBS reports, “University of Texas at Arlington criminologist Seokjin Jeong analyzed data collected from 7,000 students from all 50 states. He thought the results would be predictable and would show that anti-bullying programs curb bullying. Instead — he found the opposite. Jeong said it was, “A very disappointing and a very surprising thing. Our anti-bullying programs, either intervention or prevention does not work.”

In 2008 the Florida Definition of Marriage, Constitutional Amendment 2 passed by over 61%. The Amendment reads:

This amendment protects marriage as the legal union of only one man and one woman as husband and wife and provides that no other legal union that is treated as marriage or the substantial equivalent thereof shall be valid or recognized.

The “substantial equivalent of” are domestic partnership registries say critics.

It is expected domestic partnership registries will come up during the 2014 legislative session. This gives many pause, given what has happened in other states where gay marriage has been instituted. Massachusetts, the first state to adopt gay marriage, is perhaps the best example of how the social fabric, schools, businesses, legal system and culture are fundamentally changed when marriage is redefined.

The below video provided by the pro-family group MassResistance.org provides a historical review of changes and their impact:

EDITORS NOTE: Wikipedia lists states, counties and cities that have instituted domestic partnership registries. The following are those listed for Florida.

  • Broward County (Fort Lauderdale): Residents of the county or at least one partner employed by the county. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Clearwater: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Gainesville: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Key West: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Kissimmee: Employees of the city. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Leon County: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Miami Beach: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Miami-Dade County: Residents of the county or at least one partner employed by the county. Both opposite- and same-sex couples. The cities of Miami and South Miami also grant additional benefits to domestic partners registered in Miami-Dade County.
  • Monroe County: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples. County employment benefits only.
  • Orange County: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Orlando: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Palm Beach County: Residents of the county or at least one partner employed by the county. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Pinellas County: Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Sarasota: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples. City employment benefits only.
  • City of St. Cloud: Employees of the city. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of St. Petersburg: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Tampa: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of Tavares: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • Volusia County: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.
  • City of West Palm Beach: No residency requirement. Both opposite- and same-sex couples.