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Student Body Believes The Transparency Law Infringes on their Rights

80% of students in the MHS Pride Club believe that LGBTQ+ students are less safe than students not in the community.

Many high schools around Iowa, including MHS, have Pride Clubs/GSA that supports LGBTQ+ students in providing a safe-place on school grounds. With new legislation, the Pride Club at MHS has focused its attention on discussing how  LGBTQ+ students are affected by a new law, The Transparency Law. 

Currently, there are 61 students affiliated with the Pride Club and members are feeling the effect of the law. Whether it’s their own identity or someone they care about’s identity.

When discussing this topic, 80% of students in Pride Club spoke on the behalf of student safety in regards to the new legislation. 

“The Transparency Law is ultimately making school unsafe for those who can’t come out for any number of reasons. We say we can trust teachers and staff, but the Transparency Law contradicts that,” stated Zoe Theobald, Sophomore.

From this perspective, the Transparency Law makes children in the community not only unsafe at school but at home as well. Not all students within the  LGBTQ+ community feel supported at home because of their identity. 

“Personally, I think it is something that is not something for parents to decide. It’s a personal preference,” said Colby Black, a Freshman. 

Members of the LGBTQ+ community feel that parental decisions won’t make anyone disassociate with the LGBTQ+ community, instead it will just make children hide who they really are and possibly make them feel uncomfortable in their bodies.

“I believe that transgender students should be allowed to be called by their preferred name and pronouns, because school is a safe space and when you’re called by the wrong name and pronouns it makes many uncomfortable,” stated Lili Reiners, a Freshman. 

The Transparency Law restricts the staff’s ability to call students by their preferred name and pronouns as indicated with official school documentation. Staff, when approached with the situation, must report this to administrations for contact to be made to tell parents that their child has voiced this change in their name and/or pronouns and what they changed it to. 

Lee Neinhaus, Senior, feels that this infringes on student’s rights.

“I feel that the Transparency Law is not only normalizing discrimination towards transgender students, but it is a constitutional violation of the freedom of expression. It enables a slippery slope to restrict the safety of all LGBTQ+ people,” said Lee.

The Constitution of the United States states that the Congress will make no law abridging the freedom of speech, declaring that the community can speak of themselves and their identities however they see fit. The Constitution also states that the right to freedom of expression protects someone’s rights to have an opinion. It doesn’t matter what the opinion is, people have the right to express it, no holds barred.

The Transparency Law can make students believe that they aren’t safe at school, where safety should be a top priority among the staff and teachers. 

“I personally think there’s no need for it [the Transparency Law]. School is supposed to be a safe space,” stated Mari Brockert, a Freshman.

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About the Contributor
DeLaney Hagens
DeLaney Hagens, Writer
DeLaney Hagens is a sophomore at MHS, and it is her first year working for The Auroran Today. She loves music, singing, drawing, and reading/writing.
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