Category Archives: Culture wars

The Abortion Hypocrisy

by Dick Hall-Sizemore

Republicans are hypocrites when it comes to abortion.

They base their opposition to abortion on the belief that a fetus is  a human being and killing an innocent human being is wrong. Hence, the term “pro-life.”  (This is a position on which I happen to agree with them.)

But are they pushing for an absolute ban on abortion, perhaps with exceptions for rape, incest, and the health of the mother?  Nope.  It seems they are settling on banning abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy.  They are justifying this by calling it “mainstream” and “not extreme”.

Excuse me, but why is a 13-week-old fetus worthy of protection that is not accorded a 12-week-old fetus?  Is one “more of a human” than the other?

Then there is our Governor, Glenn Youngkin.  He is pushing for banning abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. As I have pointed out before, that limit is not going to prevent many abortions in Virginia.  According to the CDC, only 2.2 percent of abortions in Virginia in 2020 were performed after the 15th week.  If Youngkin were truly interested in protecting unborn babies, rather than playing politics, he would push for a near total ban on abortion.

Sorry, Republicans, you can’t have it both ways.  A fetus is either a human at conception or it is not.  If it is, then what is the basis for deeming fetuses more than 13 weeks old qualitatively different from those 12 weeks or less old?  If it is not a human at conception, they why ban abortions at all?

If you believe that abortion is wrong because there is a human life involved, then push for a total ban, with some limited exceptions.  Otherwise, you are just being political hypocrites.

I don’t agree with Democrats on this issue, but at least they are being honest about their position.

Which of These Persons at UVa Oversees the Educational Development of the Rest?

by James C. Sherlock

In order to illustrate the truly insulting nature of the DEI program at the University of Virginia, I offer the following quiz.

See if you can pick out the person pictured who:

directs a range of educational programming focused on educational development for staff, faculty and students.

Nana Last, Professor of Architecture

Ira C. Harris, Professor, McIntyre School of Commerce

Sankaran Venkataraman, Professor, Darden School of Business

Sandhya Dwarkadas, Professor and Chair Department of Computer Science

Tisha Hayes, Professor of Education

Trinh Thuan, Professor Emeritus, Department of Astronomy

Kelsey Johnson Professor of Astronomy

Haibo Dong Professor Aerospace Engineering

Sly Mata, Director of Diversity Education, Division for DEI

Nicole Thorne Jenkins, Dean, McIntyre School of Commerce

Devin K. Harris, Professor of Engineering

Mool C. Gupta, Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Tomonari Furukawa, Professor of Engineering

Allan Tsung M.D., Professor and Chair Department of Surgery, Medical School

Sallie Keller, Professor of Data Science

Harsha Chelliah, Professor School of Engineering






Bottom line.  
Good guess.

There is every evidence that Mr. Mata is a fine man. His biography is inspiring.

But the people pictured above who are not Mr. Mata excelled and earned their plaudits and appointments before there was a UVa Division for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI).  Even before James Ryan was President. Continue reading

Read It and Weep – DEI at UVa

Navy helicopter overflies UVa Disharoon Park as team stands at attention for national anthem. Photos By Sanjay Suchak,

by James C. Sherlock

Kerry Daugherty’s column this morning was heart-wrenching for anyone who cares at all about kids’ educations.  The Norfolk School Board voted 6-1…

to begin teaching gender ideology, masturbation, sexual identity, homosexuality, abortion and lesbianism in middle and high schools.

To kids who cannot read or perform mathematics at grade level.

Now we get a look at what awaits any kid who escapes Norfolk public schools with sufficient skills and diversity credits to get accepted into the University of Virginia (UVa).

They will be welcomed by a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) bureaucracy so large, powerful and widely distributed that a DEI factotum will:

  • review and grade their application in the recruitment process;
  • exercise authority over the curriculum and faculty;
  • monitor their progress; and
  • interview each candidate for graduate school and meet with each annually to assess political views.

If I just told you how this works as above, you would think I was making it up.

So I will quote from UVa’s website. Continue reading

Hey Norfolk: Do Kids Really Need Classes In Masturbation?

by Kerry Dougherty

You might think that a mediocre school system where barely half of all schools are fully accredited would put all of its energy and money into academics.

Oh, Bambi, you have no idea how public schools work, do you?

Norfolk School Board – which oversees a division where just 57.1% of the schools are fully accredited – voted 6-1 last night to begin teaching gender ideology, masturbation, sexual identity, homosexuality, abortion and lesbianism in middle and high schools.

Oh, and there will be a fun condom demonstration for all of the kiddies, too!


The curriculum is called “Get Real: Comprehensive Sex Education That Works” and will be directed at kids in grades 6 through 10. It’s published by Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts so you know it won’t contain a whiff of Judeo-Christian values.

According to WTKR, most of the speakers at last night’s meeting were opposed to the expanded sex ed program:

The vast majority of speakers were critical of the curriculum for Norfolk middle and high school students, and believe the focus should be on other areas in schools.

“Get on the academics! Get off the sex,” one resident said before school board members.

Like so many who have pushed back against having an LGBTQ+ agenda foisted on their children by the government, concerned Norfolk parents were ignored by the wokes on the board. Continue reading

Is This Cartoon Racist?

by James A. Bacon

Is the cartoon above, drawn by Virginia Military Institute alumnus Matt Daniel, racist?

Former Governor L. Douglas Wilder thinks so. “It’s clearly racist,” he told Washington Post reporter Ian Shapira after Shapira showed it to him.

Shapira evidently thinks so, too. “Some say” the depiction of Martin Brown, Virginia’s African-American director of Diversity, Opportunity & Inclusion, “resembles a monkey,” he wrote.

Wilder is one person. The word “some” implies that there are others. None are named or alluded to. In a long-standing Washington Post reportorial tradition of the scribe attributing his own opinions to nameless others, Shapira appears to be referencing himself.

Shapira was decent enough to quote Daniel, who happens to be chairman of the Spirit of VMI PAC and a defender of VMI traditions that Shapira has relentlessly assailed as racist and sexist. “It is not a monkey. That doesn’t even make sense,” Daniel texted. “It is a voodoo doll in a business suit being harassed by a hostile writer.”

So… whom do we believe? Let’s undertake a critical examination of the cartoon to see whose interpretation — Shapira’s or Daniels’ — makes the most sense. Continue reading

Virginia Lacks Regulations for the Safe, Scientific and Effective Diagnosis and Treatment of Transgender Youth

UVa Children’s Hospital Courtesy UVa

by James C. Sherlock

To get this out of the way, I personally support qualified diagnosis and psychological treatment for gender dysphoria in children and adolescents.

I oppose puberty suppression, cross-gender hormonal treatments and transgender surgical procedures in minors.

That said, transgender individuals, like everyone, deserve skilled, safe and standards-based medical care.

Virginia laws and regulations protect people from all sorts of things, but somehow they do not protect transgender persons from bad medical treatment. It seems axiomatic to regulate transgender medical practice to the most up-to-date and widely accepted professional standards.

But that is not the case in Virginia. It is not that the standards are out of date; they apparently do not exist.

I searched the regulations of the Department of Health for the term “transgender” and it came up “no results found.” But VDH protects us from bad shellfish.

The Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Health has lots of regulations, but a search for the term “dysphoria” comes up empty. Continue reading

Glen Allen Va’s “Do No Harm” Doing a Great Deal of Good

by James C. Sherlock

Do you assume that Virginia’s medical schools are strict meritocracies, taking only the most well prepared and accomplished applicants?

And that their efforts are then focused entirely on creating the most skilled physicians possible?

If so, you are mistaken.

The Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), written by the American Medical Association (AMA), a proudly progressive organization, measures everything they know to measure.

The AMA knows MCAT is by far the best predictor of success in medical school and brags about it. The MCAT itself was redesigned in 2015 to include sections that required test-takers to have an understanding of the social and behavioral sciences.

The current MCAT sections breakdown is as follows:

  • Section 1 – Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems (BBLS);
  • Section 2 – Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems (CPBS);
  • Section 3 – Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations of Behavior (PSBB);
  • Section 4 – Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills (CARS).

Remember that women and minorities who take the MCAT are not so “disadvantaged” that they do not feel ready to apply to medical school.

The AMA hoped the change would produce more women and “underrepresented” (as opposed to Asian-American) minorities with high MCAT scores.

Fair enough.

Yet the rest of the woke medical leadership refuses to accept the results of AMA’s MCAT because that test still does not yield the “correct” candidates. Continue reading

The Virginia Way

by Robin Beres

Politicians and pundits have invoked the “Virginia Way” in speeches and writings since colonial times. The phrase is used by partisans to evoke sentiments of decency and honor (and votes) in residents of the Old Dominion. In 1926, Douglas Southall Freeman wrote in an editorial for The Richmond News Leader that the Virginia way is not one of contention, but of understanding, not the making of humiliating laws, but the establishment of just, acceptable usage. Public sentiment can be trusted now, as always, to find the best ‘Virginia way.’”

In January 2019, writing in Bearing Drift, Brian Schoeneman described how the “Virginia way” used to work in the legislature: “Republicans and Democrats would fight hard and long during the campaign season, and when the fighting was over, both sides would pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and govern effectively for all Virginians. The bitter invective and the accusations went away.”

Unfortunately, if the childish, vindictive sign seen today in a Richmond front yard is any indication of today’s political atmosphere, the Virginia Way is in big trouble.

DEI Has “Gone Off the Rails”

by James A. Bacon

Finally, we’re getting an open debate about “Diversity, Equity & Inclusion” in Virginia — not an honest debate, mind you, but a debate which, whether honest or not, is long overdue.

Last month, Virginia’s chief diversity officer Martin Brown proclaimed that DEI was “dead” at the Virginia Military Institute. Various parties, from Democratic legislators to Richmond Times-Dispatch columnist Michael Paul Williams, lambasted Brown.

“Make no mistake: Brown did not merely threaten to terminate equity, but the entirety of DEI. And Youngkin has his back in pushing for its destruction,” wrote Williams. “Somewhere, Jim Crow is smiling.”

Ah, I see. Brown, an African-American, is bent upon dragging Virginia back to the era of lynch mobs, eugenics, and state-enforced racial segregation. With insights like that, no wonder Williams won a Pulitzer Prize for commentary.

Since changing the name of the state office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion to the office of Diversity, Opportunity & Inclusion, Youngkin has largely refrained from making public pronouncements on the subject. But earlier this week, in response to a question about Brown’s statement, Youngkin said that, while DEI was admirable five or ten years ago, it has since “gone off the rails.”

Continue reading

Teachers’ Unions and Virginia Schools

Courtesy VEA

by James C. Sherlock

Virginia is a government union state.

Because of the federal workforce in Northern Virginia, Virginia in 2021 had the third highest percentage of any state of government union members as a share of total union members at 64%.

That is a higher percentage than Washington D.C.

Of all employees in Virginia, 22.5% worked for the government in 2021. Virginia is one of only seven states over 20%. D.C. is 29%.

The National Teachers’ Unions. Many Virginia teachers and support personnel belong to local teacher’s associations and unions that are affiliates of the two major national public school teacher’s unions, the National Education Association (NEA, 3 million members) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT, 1.7 million members).

Together they represent one in four union members in the U.S. The leadership of both are hard-core progressives.

Those national numbers of members are provided by the two unions and include retirees. In 2021 together they had about 3.6 million working members.

In the years 2019-21, the National Center for Education Statistics counted three million teachers in public schools and 500,000 in private schools. But the NEA and AFT represent large numbers of other school staff to account for the apparent discrepancy.

The two unions are overtly political and focused on social issues warfare.

In Virginia, the two national unions claim 45,000 members, which, since they both include large numbers of non-teacher staff, means together they represent significantly less than half of Virginia teachers. Continue reading

Does Virginia Beach School Board Care About Girls’ Sports?

by Kerry Dougherty

If you live in Virginia Beach, I have some questions for you:

Did you sit at home while the Bathrobe Brigade on the School Board fought to keep schools closed, long after we knew kids weren’t at risk from Covid-19?

Did you watch on public access TV as the hysterical hypochondriacs of the School Board battled to keep face diapers on kids long after we knew they were doing absolutely nothing to stop the spread?

Did you sit on your hands when you learned that graphic novels featuring oral gay sex were on the shelves of public schools and the woke majority on the School Board wanted to keep them there?

Well, it’s time to get out of your La-Z-Boy and join the weary parents and grandparents who have been fighting your battles for you.

Get to tonight’s school board meeting at 6 p.m. Join the 87 people who had signed up to speak as of late yesterday, according to board member Vicky Manning.
Continue reading

ODU Graduation: Snotty Brats In Caps and Gowns

by Kerry Dougherty

Last month we wrote about snotty brats at George Mason University — a state-supported school — who’d rather stick their fingers in their ears than spend 10 minutes listening to someone who doesn’t share their radical agenda.

That was Gov. Glenn Youngkin who they found so objectionable, incidentally.

Depending on what news source you rely upon, either “about 30” or “many” graduates at Old Dominion’s commencement exercises this weekend were unaware that they, too, had attended a Virginia state institution. So they decided to turn their backs on the governor during his 10-minute commencement address.

Yes, I’m aware they have a First Amendment right to behave badly.

Just as I have a First Amendment right to call them rude brats.

In addition to the children acting out at graduation exercises, about 3,000 of them had earlier signed a petition demanding that the school rescind its invitation to the governor.

Memo to the triggered babies at ODU: your education was bankrolled by Virginia taxpayers. And a majority of those same people elected Glenn Youngkin precisely because he brought back common sense and parental rights to the commonwealth.

If you want to listen to a governor who supports biological boys competing in girls sports, someone who believes that very young school children need to see graphic novels showing gay oral sex IN SCHOOL, who thinks schools should allow children to change their names, pronouns and gender without their parents being notified, may I suggest you look into one of California, Washington or Oregon’s state universities?

Their governors may just be loony enough for you.

Think of how conservative grads must feel each spring as lefties fan out across the nation giving graduation speeches full of Marxist drivel.

Odd, you don’t read much about those students developing a case of the vapors or demanding that lefties be gagged or banned from campus.

Perhaps they’re the ones who really do believe in free speech.

Republished with permission from Kerry: Unemployed and Unedited.

Virginia Democrats – “Progressive for Who?”

Al Sharpton. Courtesy New York Post

by James C. Sherlock

“Progressive for who?”

That question was asked by Al Sharpton directly to a gathering of his supporters at a conference hosted by his National Action Network while flanked by Lori Lightfoot, Eric Adams and two other big city Democratic mayors.

“Anybody that tells you they’re progressive but don’t care about dealing with violent crimes are not.”

“Progressive for who?”

“We gotta stop using progressive as a noun and use it as an adjective.”

“You’re labeled progressive but your action is regressive. I’m woke? You must think I’m asleep.”

He demanded “a national agenda around urban violence, urban crime and accountability.”

“Accountability.” There is no word more anathema to progressives. He could not have hurt them worse.

Watch the video.

That was not the first shot, but one of heavy caliber, in the revolution against progressive destructiveness by the Black people who are among its primary victims. Continue reading

Opponents of Northern Virginia Prosecutors Pick Up Support

by Dick Hall-Sizemore

Steve Descano. Commonwralth’s Attorney, Fairfax. Photo credit: WTOP

The primary opponents of two of Northern Virginia’s “progressive” incumbent  commonwealth’s attorneys picked up a key endorsement a few days ago. I would have thought that contributors and commenters on this blog who have been vocal critics of those incumbents would have been rejoicing and highlighting those endorsements.

Perhaps it is the source of the endorsements that has made them hesitant. The source: the much- reviled Washington Post.

The paper’s editorial board has endorsed Ed Nuttall, who is challenging Steve Descano in Fairfax County, and Elizabeth Lancaster over incumbent Buta Biberaj in Loudoun County. The Post did not base its endorsements on a rejection of the overall objectives or philosophy of the incumbents, but says it is “supporting the candidates we believe will act most effectively” in balancing “safety and fairness.” Continue reading

Conservatives Actively Promoting Better Economic Future for Petersburg

Governor Youngkin and Mayor Sam Parham celebrate Partnership for Petersburg.  Courtesy Governor’s Office

by James C. Sherlock

Bill Atkinson of The Progress-Index on May 3rd did his usual great job reporting news of Petersburg.

The article is titled “PFP point man calls Petersburg ‘gold mine,’ encourages business to come or expand there.”

The Richmond meeting featured the governor’s point man on the Partnership for Petersburg (PFP), Garrison Coward, speaking to an informal meeting of Americans for Prosperity (AFP).

His message:

check out the “gold mine” 23 miles to the south.

Do well while doing good.

Progressives have no such message to offer. And a progressive would never speak to that conservative business group. Even though the AFP

is looking to boost advocacy for localities such as Petersburg…

Continue reading