One prominent figure in Arkansas, however, is signaling her intention to push back. According to the Washington Examiner, the state’s attorney general has unveiled a bill that would make it mandatory for schools to play the national anthem.
“Requiring a moment of silence”
In a tweet on Monday, Leslie Rutledge wrote: “I’m announcing The Star-Spangled Banner Act that will require each public school to play The Star-Spangled Banner at the start of school-sanctioned sporting events.”
The Republican attorney general went on to reveal a related proposal known as the Moment of Silence Act.
As Rutledge explained, that legislation would change state law “requiring a moment of silence in Arkansas schools to also mandate a moment of silence after the Pledge of Allegiance during the start of the school day.”
She argued in support of the measures by claiming that “we’ve seen through the cancel culture and others pushing back against our patriotic values” in recent years that the proposals are necessary.
“This is an opportunity to ensure that Arkansas students are reminded of the sacrifices of our veterans — that our freedoms are not free and to instill these values in our young minds and hearts as we move into the future,” Rutledge continued.
“I don’t know why we are taking the time”
Of course, her proposals met some clear opposition among Democrats, including state Sen. Greg Leding.
“I’m all for instilling American values and doing what we can there, but again, I don’t know why we are taking the time to legislate these kinds of things,” he said.
In addition to dismissing Rutledge’s move as a waste of time, Leding went on to “note that this attorney general campaigned back in 2014 for this office by saying that she didn’t really think that an attorney general had a place in crafting policy.”
Rutledge previously courted controversy with her support of legislation to keep transgender females from competing in girls’ sports.
“I want to send a strong message to President Biden and his administration that here in Arkansas, we intend to require schools to prohibit biological boys who self-identify as girls onto girls’ sports teams,” she said.