An opt-out provision to California's FAIR Education Act would silence educators on the contributions of LGBT Americans, and send a signal to students that not all Americans deserve full dignity and equality under the law. Our country encompasses a diversity of races, cultures, languages, and religious beliefs. Americans cannot be reduced to a single label and then excluded from study. Our students deserve a world-class education which includes an accurate portrayal of the struggles to build a more perfect union in our nation. Without an understanding that many different groups of Americans have overcome discrimination or prejudice, students will not fully appreciate their civic responsibilities to maintain our hard-fought freedoms in the world. It is our democratic duty to prepare our children to join a competitive global workforce in which they will be called upon to work side by side with diverse people. Respect and understanding come from knowledge, not silence.