The Alabama Department of Archives & History (ADAH) caught several lawmakers' attention after hosting a luncheon last week about Alabama's LGBTQ history.
House Majority Leader Scott Stadthagen (R-Hartselle) said the event was "alarming and disappointing." State Rep. Jamie Kiel (R-Russellville) questioned the so-called "woke liberal agenda" and how it was "invading our culture every day."
State Sen. Sam Givhan (R-Huntsville) called the event proof of an "apologize for Alabama" agenda at ADAH.
Friday, during an interview with Mobile radio FM Talk 106.5's "The Jeff Poor Show," State Sen. Chris Elliott (R-Josephine) expressed his concern about ADAH. He told listeners to anticipate further scrutiny of the agency from the legislature.
"I think they are probably reeling from a slew of phone calls from angry legislators from both the House and the Senate," Elliott said. "I know I spoke with the director. I believe he was overseas at the time, and I apologized when I got him; I think it was the wee hours of the morning, wherever he was. But listen, what they did the other day was, in my mind, foolish. I don't think that's what we need to be focused on in Alabama. And I let the director know that, as have a number of my colleagues. I really think there will be further conversations about that when the legislature reconvenes in February."
The Baldwin County lawmaker argued the event was more about sex than history, which he suggested was not appropriate for that venue.
"My concern with all of this is, you know when you are talking about the history of the LGBTQ ... movement — when you start talking about that, and you start teaching the history of that, let's be clear: You're talking about sex in the Alabama Archives & History building," he said. "And you're talking about issues you have to start going, 'Woah, why are we talking about this? Why is this something we need to be talking about in Archives & History? And I'm frustrated with how insidious this conversation is, especially when it relates to children when we are talking constantly about sex, and frankly, some pretty outside-of-the-norm sex."
"Why are we having that conversation at Archives & History?" Elliott added. "It's not about civil rights. This is not about the history of enslaved people, or this is not about how Alabama became a state, or the history of Prattville and how it came to be. You're talking about something I just don't think we need to be talking about at the Department of Archives & History. And I think myself and my colleagues are going to make sure that they know that."
Jeff Poor is the editor in chief of 1819 News and host of "The Jeff Poor Show," heard Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-noon on Mobile's FM Talk 106.5. To connect or comment, email jeff.poor@1819News.com or follow him on Twitter @jeff_poor.
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