Vice President Harris slammed Republican-led states that have passed dozens of laws targeting LGBTQ youth during a speech at a Capital Pride Festival in DC on Sunday.
“No one should be afraid to go to a nightclub lest a terrorist try to shoot them,” Harris said on Sunday, which also marked the sixth anniversary of a mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando where a gunman killed 49 people and injured. 58 others.
“Nobody should be afraid to love who they love,” Harris also said at the festival. “Our kids in Texas and Florida shouldn’t be afraid of who they are.”
“We shouldn’t have to deal with 300 laws in states across our country that attack our LGBTQ+ brothers and sisters,” she added.
The vice president’s remarks come after Texas Governor Greg Abbott (right) signed an order directing the Department of State Protective and Family Services to investigate parents or guardians of transgender youth who have received gender affirmation care.
In Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis (right) signed the Parental Rights in Education Act, also known to critics as the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, which prohibits discussion of the sexual orientation and gender identity from kindergarten to third grade.
Many other GOP-led states have passed bills banning transgender athletes from participating in women’s sports.
Last week, three families of transgender children in Texas filed a lawsuit seeking to block state investigations into them for child abuse allegations.
“Their actions have struck terror and anxiety among transgender youth and their families across the Lone Star State and have singled out transgender youth and their families for discrimination and harassment,” the Department of Human Rights commissioner’s lawsuit said. family and protective services Jaime Masters and Abbott.
Meanwhile, President Biden officially declared June LGBTQ+ Pride Month and condemned legislation targeting the LGBTQ+ community.
“Members of the LGBTQI+ community — particularly people of color and trans people — continue to face discrimination and cruel and persistent efforts to undermine their human rights,” Biden said earlier this month. -this.
“All of this has been particularly difficult for LGBTQI+ youth, 45% of whom have seriously considered attempting suicide in the past year – a devastating reality that our nation must urgently work to address,” said he also said.
Last year, Harris and second gentleman Doug Emhoff spoke at a DC Pride parade, pushing for expanded protections for LGBTQ+ communities.
“We need to pass the Equality Act. We need to make sure that our transgender community and our young people are all protected. We still need protections around jobs and housing,” she said last year.
“There is so much more work to do. And I know we are engaged and we understand the importance of this movement and our leadership roles in this ongoing movement,” she added.