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'Gay studies' in the schools used to 'swift boat' the same-sex partnership and marriage debates in Washington and Maine

rita_hibbardwebWashington state isn’t the only state with a gay marriage or partnership issue on the ballot. In Maine, voters are deciding whether to repeal the state’s new same-sex marriage law. Supporters of the new law are hoping that gay couples there don’t lose the right to marry just six months after they gained it, just like they did in California last year.

As in Maine, voters in Washington are being asked whether they want to keep a new law on the books. The Washington law establishes a gay domestic partnership, the so-called “everything but marriage” law.

In Washington, the fight is getting down and dirty, and opponents of the gay domestic partnership law are now warning that if Ref. 71 is approved, it will lead to gay studies in public schools, KUOW reporter Austin Jenkins reports.

The Reject 71 campaign says the new law will allow public schools “to teach that gay marriage is normal and healthy whether parents approve or not."

But Rep. Jamie Pederson, a gay lawmaker who sponsored the domestic partnership bill in the House, says there is no language in the bill about schools. What gets taught in the classroom is up to local schoolboards, says Pedersen, who has four children with his partner.