TCR has observed over the past year or so, the rise of the woke-twitter mob and its insistence on halting "unapproved" free speech.
One of the great ideas in our Constitution is that right and it is now under assault at a level not seen in our modern history. This is a major threat to our Republic.
If you depend on local news or the major left wing newspapers in Texas, you see little or no coverage except for Fox network stations.
Here are some examples you might have missed:
- April Powers - Afro-American and Jewish, was terminated at her job as Chief Diversity Officer for a publishing company for condemning anti-Semitism. The twitter mob got her.
- UCLA Business School Professor Gordon Klein for over 40 years, was attacked by the woke mob because he refused to grade black students with greater leniency than others in the class and refused to make the final exam a "no harm exam" (exam only counts if it helps one's grade). In reaction, the mob got 20,000(!) students on a petition that he be fired. He was suspended for three weeks and then reinstated after three weeks. Klein commented, "If we don't maintain our standards, if we are not allowed to push all our students to do their very best ...it will destroy the U.S.'s ability to compete." MB>TCR Comment: It was also racist for the students to assume black students need special help to compete, also called by some the soft bigotry of low expectations.
- Dorian Abbot, a professor of Geophysical Science at the University of Chicago was invited to speak at a prestigious lecture at MIT on climate and life on other planets. Canceled why? Because he had written that academic evaluations should be based on academic merit. The fact MIT folded quickly is a "striking illustration of the threat woke ideology poses to our culture, our institutions and to our freedoms." Professor Abbot closed with this comment, "We all need to decide what type of country we want our children to grow up in. Do we want a culture of fear and repression in which a small number of ideologists exert their power and cultural dominance to silence anyone who disagrees with them? Or do we want ... a truth-seeking discourse consisting of good-natured exchanges that are ultimately grounded in a spirit of epidemic humility?"
- Katie Herzog's recently reported on the ideological purge in our medical schools where the ability to speak the truth is a matter of life and death. Woke in medical schools is infecting our medical system and it's not good. "Wokeness feels like an existential threat … In health care, innovation depends on open, objective inquiry into complex problems, but that's now undermined by this simplistic and racialized world view where racism is seen as the cause of all disparities, despite robust data showing it's not that simple. " So progress in medicine is hampered or destroyed when the woke mob decides what's approved or not. This is how we end up debating, can only women get pregnant? Yet, a professor at the University of California Medical School recently actually apologized for this offense, use of the term "pregnant women." Some woke students complained.
- Finally, TCR has learned at a recent Zoom meeting involving an industry chamber of commerce-type group, when on the Zoom screen some use pronouns like "non-binary" or "they" and some just used their given names. Incredibly, a woke member of the meeting called to complain about the person who used their name and said it was offensive. You can't make this up. After a web search, TCR found among other things, the Vassar College guide to "understanding gender pronouns." See document. We are in much deeper trouble than one could ever imagine.
This woke report will be a regular feature of TCR.
Texas School Board Races 2021,
Some Important Candidates To Support
We all know how important our schools are and we regularly read about how our children are falling behind compared to many first world countries. Now, when the woke mob is doing its best to change education from reading, writing and arithmetic, to critical race theory, voting for the pro-traditional education candidates is critical.
So after researching choices, here are our suggestions for better school boards.
Pos 5: Natalie Blasingame
Pos 6: Scott Henry
Pos 7: Lucas Scanlon
Pos 2: Matt Skaggs
Pos 4: Dustin Creager
Pos 5: Kristin Cobb
Pos 5: Harvey Tong
Dist V: Caroline Walter
Dist VI: Kendall Baker
Dist VII: Dwight Jefferson
(Note: Some Conservatives are with Dist VII: Bridget Wade)
Also, don’t forget about the scandal-plagued Houston Community College where new leadership is needed. We support:
Dist VI: Jim Noteware
Harris County Commissioner Redistricting,
Where's The Outrage?
The Ellis-Hidalgo-Garcia authored ridiculously gerrymandered redistricting map is outrageous. Standards like geographic continuity, grouping communities of interest, ease of providing services throughout a precinct have been ignored to pack Republicans all into one district!
There are four commissioner's precincts in an area bigger than 24 states! The growth in population is generally in GOP leaning areas, so a fair redistricting would have 2 GOP seats, one Democratic seat and a swing seat. This is a developing story and critical to getting Harris County back on track.
Believe It Or Not,
County Judge Hidalgo Still Has Harris County At Red
That's right, with a big reduction in Covid numbers our clueless County Judge has not lowered the threat level from the highest red! Yes we can pack Minute Maid Park, college football stadiums around Texas, yet Harris County under the "leadership" of Lina Hidalgo remains at the highest level with all the restrictions on our freedoms still in force. Maybe the Judge could explain why we are so out of touch with the real world. We are waiting to publish her comments.
Teachers Are Not Your Friends
By Bruce Bialosky, Contributing Editor
Parents who send their children to public schools have difficulty having bad thoughts about the teachers with whom their children are in classrooms every day. These teachers are not serving in the best interests of parents or their children. Until parents come to that stark realization the educational system in this country will continue to flounder and the children of this country will suffer the consequences.
A perfect example of the problem comes from Paul Taylor, former counsel for the House Judiciary Committee who now writes on Substack.
Taylor wrote, "The teachers my kids have had in public school have been wonderful, and it's been a joy to see them teach. Individual teachers, however, are wholly separate from teacher's unions."
Mr. Taylor goes on to explain in an overly legalistic manner that unions exist for the purpose of serving the interest of their members. In this case, it means the unions do not serve the interest of the customers – the students and their parents. What Mr. Taylor does not define is that the teachers are the unions, and what the unions do is what these teachers want.
As delineated in this column previously, the teachers' unions have taken many political positions that are in stark contrast to the beliefs of parents. The teachers' unions in Los Angeles County made a bold statement in 2020 demanding the passing of multiple public policies (that have nothing to do with educating their students) before they would return to classrooms during the pandemic.
Regarding a lost year in the classroom, the head of the United Teachers of Los Angeles, Cecily Myart-Cruz, stated: "Our kids didn't lose anything. It is OK that our babies may not have learned all their times tables. They learned resilience. They learned survival. They learned critical-thinking skills. They know the difference between a riot and a protest. They know the words insurrection and coup." Among the many things wrong here, she says "our babies" as if the children are her wards not that of their parents.
Since public employee unions began legal across this country in the early 1960's, teachers' unions have been particularly effective in changing who controls the public schools. The National Education Association (NEA) is the largest union in the United States with an estimated three million members. The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) has an estimated 1.7 million members.
The teachers do not only control the unions, but they also control the political entities with which they negotiate. In cities and states like California, New York and many more, their power controls the city councils and legislatures with whom they negotiate for salaries and benefits. When the unions negotiate, they control both sides of the table.
An organization that has recently come to the forefront, National School Boards Association (NSBA), represents 90,000 school board members on about 15,000 school boards in 49 states. The NSBA sent a now infamous letter asking the federal government to step in because they asserted that parents at school board meetings were acting like domestic terrorists and asking for the Department of Justice to treat these acts as hate crimes.
The crux of the problem is that parents who are busy with their everyday lives working and raising their children have often ceded control of school boards to operatives of the teachers' unions. The seven members of Board of the Los Angeles Unified School District (second largest school district in the country) are all former teachers. What are the chances that any of them divert from the interests of the teachers' unions?
In New York City, where the largest school district exists, the Board of Education is appointed by borough presidents and the mayor. Since most of the board is appointed by Bill de Blasio, an affirmed Leftist, what are the chances they are making decisions for the parents and the kids against the teachers?
Since the pandemic has opened the eyes of parents across the country to what is going on in their schools and the curriculum that is being forced on their children, the parents have taken their case to the school boards. They have now found out that the game is rigged. And it is rigged by the teachers who they used to trust to educate their children.
If there was any remaining doubt that parents are thought of as merely the taxpayers funding the schools, that was obliterated by Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe. He stated, "I don't think parents should be telling schools what they should teach." The establishment which is bought and controlled by the teachers' unions think that the schools are there to primarily serve the interest of the employees (teachers); not the consumers (children and parents). Parents are considered a nuisance.
Parents have lost control of their public schools across the country. There may be school districts where the children (and parents) come first, but they are the aberration and not the norm. Teachers' unions with their massive political funds have bought the city councils, school boards and legislatures across the nation, not to mention mayors and governors.
The first step in curing this problem is to realize those unions are the teachers, and the teachers are the unions. They are the ones creating these bizarre educational environments and lowering standards. They are the ones who are the center of devolution of quality education where students are not meeting bare minimums, and where Blacks and Hispanics are being sentenced to second class existence because of the dismal education environment.
The next step is to run to replace these laggards at all levels and then have a real say in the children's' education. Otherwise, what parents will be doing is just carping.
Note: The NSBA has retracted the part of their letter accusing parents of being domestic terrorists and apologized for what they wrote. The question now is whether our Attorney General Garland will retract his letter.
Bruce Bialosky is the founder of the Republican Jewish Coalition of California and a former Presidential appointee. You can follow Bruce on Twitter @brucebialosky.
TCR on the Air
Gary Polland is now a regular on "What's Your Point?" hosted by Greg Groogan on Fox 26 Houston, appearing every other week. Tune in or set your recorder for 7:00 am Sundays.
Gary has recently undertaken the hosting duties on a new interview show, Tell It Like It Is. The show is available at American Star TV and at its YouTube Channel. Currently on hiatus.
Red, White, and Blue featuring TCR Editor Gary Polland on Fridays at 7:30 pm on Houston Public Media TV 8, replaying Saturday at 6:30 p.m. on Channel 8, Monday at 11:30 pm on Channel 8.2 and on the web at www.houstonpublicmedia.org.
Red, White & Blue returns in October?
About Your Editor
Gary Polland is a long-time conservative and Republican spokesman, fund-raiser, and leader who completed three terms as the Harris County Republican Chairman. During his three terms, Gary was described as the most successful county Chairman in America by Human Events - The National Conservative Weekly. He is in his twenty-sixth year of editing a newsletter dealing with key conservative and Republican issues. The last twenty years he has edited Texas Conservative Review. As a public service for the last 18 years, Gary has published election guides for the GOP primary, general elections and city elections, all with the purpose of assisting conservative candidates. Gary is also in his 21st year of co-hosting Red, White and Blue on Houston Public Media TV 8 PBS Houston, longest running political talk show in Texas history. Gary serves on the Board of Directors of American Values, a national pro-family, pro-faith, conservative organization supporting the unity of the American people around the vision of our founding fathers and dedicated to reminding the public of the conservative principles fundamental to the survival of our nation. Gary is a practicing attorney and strategic consultant. He can be reached at (713) 621-6335.