Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Tulsi Gabbard Gets It Half-Right

Posted by M. C. on April 8, 2022

The problem is, conservatives – and more traditional liberals like Tulsi – are laser focused on the “woke” ideology that is infecting public discourse and driving “progressive” politics rather than striking at the root problem. In corporate lingo, they’re in love with the solution instead of the problem.

An issue that is dominating headlines is the question of parental rights in education. Florida recently passed a law, falsely labeled the “Don’t Say Gay” law, prohibiting educators from instructing pupils in kindergarten through third grade about sexual matters. “Progressives,” as a result, are having a hard time justifying their outrage. During a press conference, Fox News reporter Peter Doocy asked White House press secretary Jen Psaki what the president’s opinion is on an acceptable age to discuss sex in schools, and she punted, claiming the new law is “propagating misinformed, hateful policies” and “putting parents and LGTBQ+ kids in a very difficult heartbreaking circumstance.”

One leftist who has bucked current trends, raising the ire of her peers, is former U.S. representative Tulsi Gabbard (D-HA). Gabbard has put herself at odds with Democratic Party stalwarts Hillary Clinton and Vice President Kamala Harris, repeatedly taking the former to task for her warmongering and excoriating the latter for the gleeful enforcement of drug laws when Harris served as California’s attorney general. Now Gabbard is joining the fray over parental rights in schools, and the language she employs sounds very promising. At first. “We should all support the Parental Rights in Education bill that recently passed in Florida, which very simply bans government and government schools from indoctrinating ‘woke’ sexual values in … schools to a captive audience,” she wrote on Twitter. “A captive audience,” she added, for clarification, “that is by law required to attend.”

Gabbard is correct. Students in public schools are in fact a “captive audience,” as they are required by law to attend a government-approved school, which their parents/guardians are likewise required by law to fund via property taxes. (Homeschooling and private education are allowed, but difficult in practice for those who can’t afford to “pay twice” – first for a government school, and then for one of their choosing.) Public schools have become indoctrination centers, and Gabbard rightly points out that, “Government has no place in personal lives. Government has no place in our bedrooms. Parents are the ones responsible for raising kids and instilling in them a moral foundation, not the government.”

But it’s fair to ask: isn’t education itself a parent’s concern as well? 

See the rest here

This post was written by: Scott McPherson

Scott McPherson is a policy adviser at the Future of Freedom Foundation, and author of Freedom and Security: The Second Amendment and the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. An advocate of the Free State Project, he lives in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

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