Columbia Law Professor Explains Why Public Schools Are Tearing America Apart

Smearing parents fed up with their kids’ schools as “domestic terrorists” seems to be a wild, incendiary charge with little basis in reality. Yet it’s the basis on which the U.S. attorney general has convened an FBI task force to surveil and intimidate parents who object to what their children are being taught, and how they are being treated, with public tax dollars. The organization that colluded with the Justice Department to create the pretext for chilling voters’ speech has backed down, but the FBI threat remains.

School lockdowns have clarified and accelerated the deep, irreconcilable differences among American parents and citizens about how to educate children. Americans want completely different things from their kids’ schools, often opposite things. It’s simply impossible to teach both that there’s a hierarchy of races and that all humans are created equal, let alone to teach “both sides” of other education flashpoints, such as whether to teach social justice or actual math in math class. Schools have to choose.

K-12 schools are largely choosing the political establishment over the wishes of the people who elect them and provide their children as the pretext for schools’ public funding. The political establishment that benefits from public schools’ monopoly on teaching future voters what to think is being increasingly direct about this arrangement.

In 1996, Hillary Clinton told Americans “it takes a village” to raise a child. That was the soft sell. Today, we’re getting the hard sell: “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach,” said Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe in a September debate.

Continue Reading…