Protesters escorted from House Chamber as controversial ‘anti-trans’ bill becomes law

Emotions ran high, from rallies and protests outside the Capitol to even shouting at lawmakers in the chambers.
Published: Mar. 29, 2023 at 9:52 PM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - There were intense moments at the Kentucky Capitol on Wednesday as the General Assembly voted to override governor andy beshear’s veto of controversial legislation opponents call “anti-transgender.”

Emotions ran high, from rallies and protests outside the Capitol to even shouting at lawmakers in the chambers.

“We have created an environment of hate, and then we look at them like there’s something wrong with them,” said Rep. Pamela Stevenson, D-Louisville.

As House Democrats stood on the House floor, dozens of protesters stood against Senate Bill 150.

Kentucky State Police say it all happened in the House of Representatives gallery. They say the Sergeant of Arms requested their help to restore order.

Troopers say the protesters were given the option to leave without any enforcement, or they would be arrested. Now, those 19 have been cited for criminal trespassing.

The arrests came after a day of rallies on both sides of the issue before lawmakers voted to override.

Inside the Capitol, supporters of the legislation spoke in the rotunda at a “protect parental rights” rally.

Meanwhile, outside, opponents rallied before going inside to continue voicing opposition.

“Students at young ages in our publicly funded schools are being told that they can be a different gender, and perhaps they were born in the wrong body. Tell me what that does to a child to think they were born wrong,” said Sen. Lindsey Tichenor, R-Smithfield.

Supporters of the bill say the legislation prohibits sex change procedures and hormone treatments for children. It will also not allow the mandated use of pronouns.

“Let’s not let 1% of the population determine our destiny here in the Commonwealth of Kentucky,” said Sen. Donald Douglas, R-Nicholasville. “You all are stronger, and you are better than that.”

Opponents call it hate.

“I stand here today as the first openly LGBTQ elected in this body. It’s very hurtful, it’s very sad, and it’s a shame,” said Rep. Keturah Herron, D-Louisville.

Rebecca Blankenship, the director of Ban Conversion Therapy Kentucky, said this legislation has “sentenced many to death.” She says her organization is actively coordinating with other groups to plan a lawsuit.

Part of the bill goes into effect immediately, including preferred pronouns in schools and policies regarding bathrooms. The part about gender-affirming health care for trans youth goes into effect in 90 days.