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By Ben Johnson

A polling firm believes it has found the perfect strategy for Democrats to fend off a red wave in the 2022 midterms: Blame the culture war in America’s public schools on Republicans. The decision to punish conservatives for responding to decades of liberals’ classroom indoctrination comes even as parents struggle to remove pornographic content from school libraries, and teachers warn that the NEA has abandoned teaching in favor of turning public schoolchildren into “social activists for leftist causes.”

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A Democratic polling firm found that more voters trust Republicans than Democrats to handle the issue of education, a sea change in public opinion. In 2017, Democrats enjoyed a 19 point lead over the GOP on education. Hart Research Associates — which polled registered voters in seven swing states on behalf of the American Federation of Teachers — also found 60% of voters were dissatisfied with the way schools taught racial issues, and 58% opposed the schools’ focus on sexual orientation and transgender ideology. In all, 86% believe America’s educational system needs changes, with 39% calling for “major reforms” or “a complete overhaul.”

To get their mojo back, the firm advises Democrats to attack “Republicans’ culture war attacks on schools.” Candidates should accuse the GOP of “banning books and censoring curriculums,” while reassuring voters that Democrats want to “put politics aside.” But they warn Democrats this election cycle to “[a]cknowledge parents’ important role in education and the need for parental input on curriculum issues,” an apparent reference to failed 2021 Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, who famously flubbed, “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.”

Posing as the parents’ advocates will likely prove challenging for Democrats after the Biden administration solicited a letter from schoolboard officials to justify a national crackdown on concerned parents, potentially placing them under the same rubric as domestic terrorists. It seems doubly hard as school board officials continue to clash with concerned fathers such as Bruce Friedman, who opposes pornography in public schools.

Censoring Parents Who Want Porn Out of School Libraries

Bruce Friedman wanted to bring three sexually explicit books in his local high school library to the attention of school administrators in Clay County, Florida — but when he tried to read a passage at their June 30 meeting, officials cut his microphone.

Officials told him he could not read from the books, because they are too pornographic to read in front of minors. “There are federal and state laws that prohibit you from saying the things that you’re getting out to say on television. There are state laws that prohibit and federal communications laws that prohibit you from publishing these things to a child,” one schoolboard member told him. He said he would only turn Friedman’s mic back on when the father agreed to do “something besides reading pornography into a public television set.”

“Irony appears to be lost on our opponents,” quipped Friedman as he recounted the scene on “Washington Watch with Tony Perkins” Thursday. “He used the word pornography; I didn’t have to. He talked about the inappropriateness of those words for children.”

The Florida father defied the Democratic stereotype that he’s lobbying for Brown Shirt-style censorship.

“I’m not looking to ban books or burn books. It’s not Kristallnacht,” said Friedman, who leads his state’s chapter of No Left Turns in Education. “I want [pornographic materials] removed from children’s access points.” He emphasized that sexually explicit books belonged in the adult section of a public library. “In the school libraries, how about we have books that are appropriate for children?” he asked. “Don’t put it in a public setting [where] it’s being thrust upon our children.”

His plea is reminiscent of another anti-porn parent, Stacy Langton, who had her microphone cut off while reading a passage from a pornographic book at a meeting of the Fairfax County (Virginia) School Board last September. She explained that “Gender Queer: A Memoir” by Maia Kobabe “has detailed illustrations of a man having sex with a boy,” as well as “fellatio, sex toys, masturbation, and violent nudity.” The other book, “Lawn Boy” by Jonathan Evison, “describes a fourth-grade boy performing oral sex on an adult male” and remembering the experience fondly. Although Twitter covered a video of Langton’s speech with the same warning it places on hardcore pornography, the county returned the books to school shelves in November.

Even when parents succeed in removing such content from school libraries, “some of it is even inserted in special collections in classroom libraries,” Meg Kilgannon, senior fellow for Education Studies at Family Research Council, told Perkins on Thursday’s program. Likewise, the schools’ focus on “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion” means teacher-activists have a commitment to exposing impressionable minds to books with “racist content, books with LGBT content, trans content,” she warned. “As a parent, you really have to be engaged with your school.”

Such determination to politicize and sexualize other people’s children may explain why swing-state voters now trust Republicans on education, by one percentage point. Yet teachers’ union officials defiantly insist they will promote a far-Left agenda in the classroom, at taxpayers’ expense.

Teachers Plan to Indoctrinate Kids on LGBTQ Issues, Abortion, CRT

At the National Education Association’s annual convention this month, President Becky Pringle enrolled the NEA’s three million members in an ideological crusade to sexualize the public schools. “We will say gay! We will say trans!” she insisted, as members adopted a resolution stating the “NEA will publicly stand in defense of abortion.”

“What I saw and what I heard was basically the platform of the Democratic Party,” Brenda Lebsack, a California teacher who attended the NEA annual convention virtually, told Tony Perkins on Thursday. The NEA wants to turn public schools into “a place where we are to train social activists for leftist causes” and “freedom fighters for the marginalized.”

To get hesitant teachers on board with their agenda, the NEA does “a lot of arm-twisting” and emotional blackmail, Lebsack revealed. California teachers’ union officials have been “scaring teachers” that “if we don’t affirm all of these many, multiple myriads of genders,” they would be “accused of sexual harassment” or of contributing to students’ “harm, suicide, depression, anxiety.” In reality, a far-reaching study in Sweden found that gender reassignment surgery led to “considerably higher risks” for suicide and poor mental health.

Yet Lebsack said California schools’ Multi-Tiered Systems of Support connect underage children struggling with their sexual orientation or gender identity to “unvetted adults” at such LGBTQ pressure groups as the Trevor Project. “This is not a safe place. This is a sticky web for sexual predators,” she warned. “There’s a lot going on behind parents’ backs.”

Some of the academic Left’s ideological rigidity burst into public this week, as a Berkeley law professor accused Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) of “violence” for refusing to say that men can get pregnant. “That is the kind of exchange that’s happening in school meetings across the country when parents go to the school and say, ‘Why did you change my child’s name’” on enrollment forms — a step known as social transitioning, which precedes medical transitioning with puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and surgeries — Kilgannon stated.

“Think about what’s happening in the classroom, where you have basically one-way communication and a teacher is indoctrinating the children,” noted Perkins. “The children can’t push back like Josh Hawley did.”

He pointed out that, for Christians, education is a matter of spiritual accountability, reflecting how we have handled the stewardship of our children’s souls. “As a parent, you are responsible for your child’s education. You can delegate the authority, but you can never delegate the responsibility. God has given that to you,” Perkins reminded his listeners as he closed the program. “So, make sure you train up your children in the way that they should go.”

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