The Rainbow Report – A Rollercoaster of Progress: Three Years of Voting on LGBTQ History Month in Miami-Dade Schools 🌈
“Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” – George Santayana
This was the third consecutive year that I was in the audience at the Miami-Dade School Board meeting when they voted on whether to declare October as LGBTQ History Month. The first year, in 2021, the chambers were nearly empty, and almost no one got up to speak on what was a non-controversial and ceremonial item. The measure passed by a 7-1 vote.
Then “Don’t Say Gay” came along. The ensuing weaponization of the LGBTQ community turned an uplifting occasion into one of vitriol. In 2022, with the room packed by residents, the measure failed by a 7-1 against.
This year, the result was slightly better. The resolution to recognize the historical contributions of the queer community still failed. But it was by a narrower 5-3 vote. I’m so thankful to Board Members Dorothy Bendross-Mindingall and Luisa Santos for this year standing with the sponsor of the item, Lucia Baez-Geller, in support. In the case of Ms. Bendross-Mindingall, I’d been speaking with her directly in the weeks leading up to the vote. I know how much thought she put into her vote and how concerned she always is for our children. And King Charles should bestow an award for bravery to Mrs. Baez-Geller for continuing to push the item in the face of anger from those opposed. We can hope that next year, the sentiment in favor grows once again. For now, we will honor in our own ways the historical efforts of the LGBTQ community.
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