May 29, 2022

Down Home NC: Supporters of Public Schools are a Majority. It’s Time to Act Like It.

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The writers at Down Home North Carolina call for support of public education.

You’re not imagining things. Your local school board meeting has grown increasingly hostile over the past two years. The public comment section has become a storm of seemingly endless outrage. First was the opposition to masks, then Critical Race Theory, and now the conversation has turned to banning books that reference race or gender issues. If you’re a public school parent and have chosen to ignore these culture war tantrums, it’s understandable. For all the pandemic difficulties affecting our schools over the past several years, the overwhelming majority of parents feel good about their child’s public school, their teachers, and the education they are receiving.

For Trump’s former strategist Steve Bannon, that’s exactly the problem: public school parents like you represent a majority. Under the current rules of our democracy, majorities are a big problem for someone who has clung to and promoted the Big Lie –  the myth that Trump didn’t lose decisively in the 2020 election. Troubled by the U.S. as an increasingly multiracial democracy, Steve Bannon has set into motion a plan to seize control of the political apparatus capable of overturning a majority vote with a hyper localized precinct strategy that in his words is “going to go through the school boards.” We would do well take him at his word.

Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson embraced this strategy last year telling constituents they need to: “take back our school boards, our county boards, our city councils.” The question is: take them back from who exactly? The answer lies in where we see the precinct strategy playing out and it isn’t pretty. NBC News reports that the “cities and counties where school districts have faced rancor over equity initiatives this year in at least three recent school board meetings finds that each has become less white over the last 25 years.

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