Callum Paton reports for Newsweek that on Feb. 12, 2019, France’s National Assembly voted in favor of an amendment removing the words “mother” and “father” from forms in French schools, replacing them with “parent 1” and “parent 2.” In so doing, the amendment became law, alongside a new school bill.
France’s majority party, La République en Marche! (LREM; in English “Forward!“), which was founded in 2016 by now-President Emmanuel Macron, says that the new law is a necessary step to bring France’s schools into line with the European nation’s 2013 same-sex marriage law — the Marriage for All Law that was passed in 2013. A Forward! legislator, Valérie Petit, told French outlet 20 Minutes: “The amendment aims to anchor into law the family diversity of children in the administrative forms submitted in school.”
Rodrigo Arenas, co-chair of Fédération des Conseils de Parents d’Élèves (FCPEP), the country’s largest federation of parents, called the amendment a “very good thing” because it “takes into account changing family situations” and “resonates with the law passed on the fight against harassment, because often in situations of child harassment, children have been targeted for not conforming.”
In a tweet on Feb. 14, Arenas decries usage of “mother” and “father” as religious tyranny (translated from French):
It will be necessary for the supporters of the “a Papa, a mother” to understand that a religious conception of the family cannot be imposed on a secular public school. This is why private schools exist.
Racism, anti-Semitism, negationnisme, homophobia must cease to be regarded in our country as “opinion crimes” enshrined in the Law of 1881 which protects the freedom of the press. They must be considered as common law offences.
Conservative parties call the amendment a danger to society:
- Xavier Breton, a conservative deputy for the country’s Les Républicains (LR), denounced the law as frightening, calling it a result of “politically correct thinking that did not correspond to reality” in that 95% of legal unions in France are comprised of male-female couples.
- Eric Ciotti, another lawmaker whom Newsweek calls “rightwing” (how come the media never call leftwing parties “leftwing”?), calls the law a “fantasy” and that the “negotiation of gender” would “deconstruct the balance of society.”
- France’s main “far-right” party, the Rassemblement National (RN), which progressed to the second round of the country’s 2017 presidential elections, also objected to the amendment. RN leader said “the mask had fallen” from the face of Forward!, and that Forward! is showing their contempt for the family.
Meanwhile, the Yellow Vest rebellion continues in the streets of Paris. In the video below, a protester had his hand blown off.
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