What happens when public school teachers refuse to join in the effort to indoctrinate public school students with a divisive racially oriented ideology rather than focusing on the traditional basics of education?
In the matter of Laura Morris, a fifth-grade teacher at Lucketts Elementary School in Leesburg, Va., the answer was to publicly resign before the Loudoun County School Board.
The instructor tearfully protested against controversial policies including teaching critical race theory (CRT) and students using transgender locker rooms.
One account said Morris sobbed as she said, "School board, I quit! I quit your politics. I quit your trainings and I quit being a cog in a machine that tells me to push highly politicized agendas on our most vulnerable constituents--the children.
"I will find employment elsewhere. I encourage all parents and staff in this country to flood the private schools."
On the board's decision to add CRT lessons, she said, "This summer I have struggled with the idea of returning to school, knowing that I'll be working yet again with a school division that, despite its shiny tech and flashy salary, promotes political ideologies that do not square with who I am as a believer in Christ." She said she'd been told during "equity trainings" that the public education system had to change since white Christian females currently have the power.
"Clearly, you have made your point," Morris was quoted saying. "You no longer value me or many other teachers you have employed in this county. So since my contract outlines the power that you have over my employment in Loudoun County Public Schools, I thought it necessary to resign in front of you."
According to criticalrace.org, "An outgrowth of the European Marxist school of critical theory, critical race theory is an academic movement which seeks to link racism, race, and power. Unlike the civil rights movement, which sought to work within the structures of American democracy, critical race theorists challenge the very foundations of the liberal order, such as rationalism, constitutional law, and legal reasoning. Critical race theorists argue that American social life, political structures, and economic systems are founded upon race, which (in their view) is a social construct."
So how do you feel about pushing such social engineering on the nation's classrooms?
I agree with Morris. There's no legitimate place for a purely political and unnecessary agenda that aggressively shoves radical ideology into young minds.
Emotion trumps reason
A reader asked the other day how I felt about the terrible divisiveness that divides our nation today. Other than saying how destructive it is with a house so divided, my observation was relatively simple.
I see some people centering their arguments based solely on childlike emotion. If things aren't to their liking or agreement, their knee-jerk response is usually rooted in hissy fits rather than thoughtful. adult common-sense debate.
If it feels good, these people let their nastiness fly, including unjustified demonizing and personal insults. They don't even want to hear arguments that differ from their feelings.
I believe others wind up equally frustrated and defensive by this untenable situation.
Under such circumstances, and with such sharply divergent views of what our nation represents, no one wins or emerges satisfied. And so the destructive beat goes on and on.
Speaking of divergent opinions, my recent column citing an inmate serving a 20-year sentence for failing to pay child support who told of inmates needing responsive medical care, bedsheets and towels, as well as additional staff, drew several reactions.
As expected, the reactions were as divergent as our troubled nation today.
One sent this comment: "If this inmate is for real, then something is terribly wrong there. How can I help this institution? ... I can personally provide some necessities to this person. I read the rules at the Cummins Prison for sending money or items. Frankly, if I sent some items I doubt they would get to this person. ... I was appalled at his situation and it caught my attention. ... I don't know where to go for information."
Contrast that with another reader's views: "Inmate's appeal, no sympathy. Maybe the inmates will make better decisions next time they decide to break the law. Nothing was mentioned about how his divorced family suffered because he refused to support them. A slug is a slug and you have to be accountable for your actions."
My thoughts? Those guilty of felony crimes certainly should pay fairly for their transgressions. However, other than being locked away in such a hostile environment for years, our civilized society should insist upon providing humane treatment such as medical care, adequate prison staff and decent bedsheets and towels.
Mike Masterson is a longtime Arkansas journalist, was editor of three Arkansas dailies and headed the master's journalism program at Ohio State University. Email him at [email protected].