March 16, 2010
Is It 'Family-Friendly'? Or 'Discrimination'?
When it comes to a Florida bill to attract filmmakers, it depends on whom you ask
When Florida's House of Representatives drafted a $75 million bill to entice "family-friendly" filmmakers to make movies in the Sunshine State by giving them a tax break, some equal rights groups cried foul.
Why? Because movies and TV shows depicting gay characters may not be eligible for the tax break, according to The Palm Beach Post, which reports that "the bill would prohibit productions with "nontraditional family values" from receiving a so-called family-friendly tax credit."
"Think of it as like Mayberry," state Rep. Stephen Precourt, R-Orlando, told The Post. "That's when I grew up — the '60s. That's what life was like. I want Florida to be known for making those kinds of movies: Disney movies for kids and all that stuff. Like it used to be, you know?"
But the head of a coalition of 80 groups that advocate for equal rights said the bill would "subsidize discrimination" and marginalize gay and single-parent families.
"Instituting 1950s-style movie censorship does nothing to support real-life families or help Florida's struggling economy," said Ted Howard, executive director for Florida Together.