Dear Daily Signal: It was appropriate for conservative congressmen such as Rep. Jim Jordan to grill Attorney General Merrick Garland during a House hearing, as reported by Mary Margaret Olohan (“3 Takeaways From AG Garland’s House Panel Testimony on Virginia School Rape Case, Conflict of Interest”).
But now that conservatives have shown the attorney general to be so irresponsible as to encourage his agencies of law enforcement to go after parents over school board disputes, based solely on a partisan National School Boards Association letter, among other serious issues (such as his willful ignorance about the school rape case in Loudon County, Virginia), where’s the follow-up?
The GOP caucus should be filing for—and loudly and unceasingly demanding—Garland’s impeachment. Of course, the effort would likely fail. But what better tool to focus national attention on the Justice Department’s weaponizing of legitimate protest?—Joel Brind, Ph.D., Wappingers Falls, N.Y.
Dear Daily Signal: Where to start with Fred Lucas’ report on the attorney general’s testimony to a Senate committee (“6 Takeaways From Merrick Garland’s Senate Testimony on Activist Parents and Other Issues”)?
First, why is a threat, if any, against a local school board member a federal offense that requires involvement of Attorney General Merrick Garland’s Justice Department and FBI? That seems to me to be a matter that can and should be investigated by state or local law enforcement.
I would argue that Garland is badly abusing his authority by getting involved in this issue. There is a disturbing trend, to elevate every dispute at local levels to a federal issue. It’s not the responsibility of the federal government.
Riots, looting, and other violence in various areas of the country were ignored by the feds last year, and federal involvement was condemned for those serious crimes. Yet this is a federal issue? I think not.
Second, I understand from Lucas’ report that Garland and his Justice Department approved a “settlement” with former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe because it was less expensive. The attorney general excuses rewarding a lawbreaker at taxpayer expense for expedience?
I would think the Justice Department attorneys involved in such a case are on the government payroll whether litigating against McCabe or working on some other issue. So the taxpayer expense for those lawyers is exactly the same regardless of the case at hand.
McCabe successfully got away with the serious crime of repeatedly lying under oath. That seems to me to be a precedent that future criminals might employ; it is a dereliction of duty on Garland’s watch and perhaps by Garland himself.
I could go on, but Garland is a disgrace to our nation as a partisan attorney general. I echo Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark.: that “Thank God that Garland is not on the Supreme Court.”—Wayne Peterkin, Evangeline, La.
The Justice Department can move at glacial speed on most things, but interestingly, as your “Problematic Women” podcast points out, the agency hopped on this issue like a scalded jackrabbit (“National School Boards Association Issues ‘Weak’ Apology for Letter Likening Parents’ Actions to ‘Domestic Terrorism’”).
The damage done by this hasty overreaction was immediate. The National School Boards Association never will recover the trust of parents in the institution of education. They dug their own grave.
Unfortunately, it’s future generations of young people who will suffer the most in this.—Emily Smith, Mississippi
Dear Daily Signal: Thank you for Mary Clare Amselem’s well-written commentary article (“Virginia Parents Standing Up to Loudoun County School Board Should Inspire Parents Everywhere”). She touched on many of the key points that concerned parents are standing up to discuss regarding their children’s education.
Amselem does an excellent job of reminding us that the concern is not limited to critical race theory or “woke” ideology in schools, but also the push to accept any and all forms of transgender opinions, pornographic materials, and so on.
She correctly uses examples in a noninflammatory manner to remind us all that our children, their education, upbringing, and welfare belong to us and not the state. In a frightening but true observation, she writes that the left “has come to embrace the troubling perspective that children are partially owned by the state.”
It is important for parents (and school boards) to remember the key point in Pierce v. Society of Sisters, the Supreme Court case she cites from 1925: “The child is not the mere creature of the state; those who nurture him and direct his destiny have the right, coupled with the high duty, to recognize him and prepare him for additional obligations.”—Chuck Williams, Littleton, Colo.
Name one company in which the executive who authorizes employees’ paychecks is not allowed to tell employees what he/she expects from them. Yet school boards are telling parents they have no right to say what they want from their children’s education.
School boards do not pay teachers’ salaries. That money comes from citizen taxpayers.
I’m one of those taxpayers. I’m retired, but I’ve taught in public schools. I have a master’s degree in education. In the first parents’ night visit, I always outlined my teaching goals and I invited parents to be involved in what they wanted their children to learn.
At the time, I was a member of the National Education Association. That was back when the NEA was concerned about improving the quality of education, a goal that no longer exists for that teachers union.
I grieve over what has become of our nation, especially the government. I applaud parents who insist on being involved in their children’s schools and education.—D. Michael Douglas, Mesa, Ariz.
Dear Daily Signal: I have never responded to one of your articles, but read them diligently. I am appalled by Mary Margaret Olohan’s report on the behavior of the school board in Wellesley, Massachusetts, and its inclusion director, Charmie Curry (“Lawsuit Targets Massachusetts Public School System for Racial Segregation, Censoring Students”).
Honestly, that official’s title seems to apply only to certain groups. I was also surprised that the language associated with being white was so demeaning. If I were to use this type of language to describe another group, I would be characterized as bigoted, racist, and insensitive. I would agree with that assessment.
However, it seems that these educators and inclusion personnel are not held to the same standard. I do not feel particularly angry, fearful, or guilty. So far today, I have managed to not cry once.
What I am, however, is distrusting. If an individual such as Curry behaves in such an egregious manner, I find that I avoid them. In all aspects of my life.
It is disappointing that during the last decade, the racial divide in our country has continued to expand. I am unsure of the solution, as it is a complicated issue. However, negative labeling and insulting terms are not going to provide any opportunity for compromise and healing.—Mac Irwin, Bedford, Texas
Dear Daily Signal: About Mary Margaret Olohan’s report on the rape in a girls’ restroom at a high school in Loudoun County, Virginia: I was very naive to believe that the #MeToo movement truly cared about victims of sexual abuse and assault (“#MeToo Groups Silent Over Boy Allegedly Raping Girl in Loudoun School Girls Bathroom”).
If these organizers truly cared, they would be outraged that transgender individuals or those who claimed to be transgender to gain access to vulnerable women and girls were attacking girls and women.—Nancy Mclellan
The #MeToo movement has done much damage to many men, who have lost jobs with even a hint of some infraction.
Then to hear of the lack of outrage when two young girls are sexually assaulted by a “gender-fluid” male is unbelievable. Add insult to injury that the Virginia father of one of the girls is arrested and charged when the Loudoun County Board of Education would not listen to him.
What father would not be distraught that his daughter had been raped?
Biological males have no place in female bathrooms, locker rooms, or prisons. Furthermore, they do not belong in women’s sports. When is common sense and real science going to reassert itself?—Victor Watson
Watching the Supreme Court
Dear Daily Signal: Amy Swearer’s article on the Supreme Court’s New York state gun case was excellent (“Supreme Court Arguments in New York Gun Case Signal Uphill Battle to Defend Overly Restrictive Laws”).
One thing I always wondered about is why, in analyses, the Second Amendment isn’t also tied to and further strengthened by the Fourth Amendment (on being secure in one’s person), the Ninth (on rights retained by the people), and the 10th (on rights retained by the people).
Isn’t self-defense, with or without a militia, a fundamental right retained by each person? Why, even animals have it.
The Second Amendment also is supported by documents such as the Virginia Declaration of Rights (1777), also incorporated in the Virginia Constitution, including: “That all men are by nature equally free and independent and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.”
In Samuel Johnson’s Dictionary, first published in 1755, his first definition for “man” includes both men and women. It’s as if at that time they knew the truth even though society practiced male-led government.
Keep up the good work. Hopefully, the Supreme Court—including some or all liberal justices—will join on this to defeat New York’s taking of constitutional rights.—Mark Doehnert, Falls Church, Va.
When the Second Amendment is challenged, the defense always advances the argument that the police are all that is necessary to protect the population.
Why is it so hard to get people to understand that the mission of the police is not to keep crimes from happening, but to bring criminals to justice after the crime has been committed? Only potential victims have the ability to stop a crime from being committed.—Ronald Everett, Erlanger, Ky.
Dear Daily Signal: Melanie Israel’s commentary article on the abortion case before the Supreme Court pointed out that the most important aspect is that the Constitution provides for the people to deal with issues such as abortion through their elected representatives (“A Major Abortion Case Goes Before the Supreme Court. Here’s What You Need to Know.”)
Americans do so in their own state legislatures, and it isn’t constitutional for the Supreme Court to usurp their authority under states’ rights to do so.
I think the American public needs to be reminded of that often. Then the public could keep reminding the Supreme Court justices, and perhaps others in government, who either are ignorant of that fact or intent on ignoring it.—Barry Click, California
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