Category Archives: Parental Rights

Daughter of Heroines

Roanoke College women’s swim team (front row) and supporters at press conference at Hotel Roanoke, Oct. 5. (photo/Scott Dreyer)

by Margot Heffernan

The year is 2023 but it feels as if the calendar has rolled back a hundred years for women and girls in Virginia, and just about anywhere else in the Western world. Hyperbolic? Over the top?

Sadly, no.

Each day women are censored, denigrated, and erased; called bigots for speaking biological fact; losing to men in female sports; redefined with terms like “chest feeders” and “uterus havers.” Violent male felons are routinely housed in women’s prisons in at least four states because they “identify” as women. And private female spaces are ceded to biological men in schools and other public places.

Virginia is a microcosm of the problem writ large. Remember the scandalous sexual assault of two Loudoun County girls over two years ago that were perpetrated by a male who gained access to girls’ restrooms. Recall the recent Roanoke College attempt to hijack the women’s swim team by allowing a man to join. Then, on September 27th, at a Turner Ashby High cheerleading event in Rockingham County, several males entered the female locker room without consent from the girls. Some cheerleaders felt compelled to change in the shower stalls or bathrooms of their female-only locker room. Continue reading

Charlottesville, Its Public Schools and UVa – Part Two – Black Students

by James C. Sherlock

What drew me to this story is the fact that Black students in Charlottesville City Schools (CCS) have suffered to a degree unequaled elsewhere in the Commonwealth.

Keeping in mind the domination of Charlottesville and its schools by the University of Virginia and its School of Education and Human Development discussed in Part One, we will move ahead from there.

CCS is a school system designed unusually with six schools for Pre-K-4, one for grades 5 and 6, another for 7 and 8, and a single high school with a couple of alternative programs.

Map of elementary school boundaries courtesy of Charlottesville City Schools.  Author’s annotations in overlays reflect Virginia School Quality data

 

The map above shows that the Pre-K-4 school boundaries roughly follow the city’s neighborhoods.

Now look at the elementary school performance and attendance annotations.

The biggest anomaly is that the gap between White and Black academic performance in CCS is an ocean. Worse than Richmond both in absolute performance by the Black students and relative to White students.

I can find nowhere in the Commonwealth, including other college towns (and I looked), in which White and Black public-school students exist in academic disparity to the extent they do in Charlottesville.

The Charlottesville High School riots reflect that gulf.  Buford Middle is worse.

CCS has managed to fail those Black children in a relatively balanced student demographic of 42% White, 29% Black, 14% Hispanic, 5% Asian and 10% multiple races.

The teachers have far more advanced degrees, most from UVa’s ed school, than the average school division.

It just doesn’t work.

Continue reading

Speaking of Banning Books

by John Massoud

Earlier this month, a Warren County resident was complaining about a “small group of people who wish to ban books” from the Samuels Library. The writer talked about how many of the speakers that evening were not Warren County residents, or may have just purchased a library card so they could speak.

The writer may not be aware of this, but by that last statement, he was trying to suppress free speech. Several of the speakers who were supporting allowing these books in the children’s section of Samuels Library were trying to suppress free speech. One of the more egregious examples was a young lady who early in the meeting said that “churches should not be allowed to speak” because they “don’t pay taxes.” What she meant to say was that no person who attends a church should be allowed to speak. So people who attend church, who pay their taxes, should not be allowed to speak, yet anyone who agrees with those wanting to show porn to kids should be allowed to speak as they wish. This according to the logic of those who want to show porn to children.

People like the writer say they are 100 percent for free speech. Yet they want anyone who disagrees with them to not be allowed to speak. The writer does not support free speech. He supports free speech if you agree with him. With that being said, here are the books that many leftists want banned (and in some cases have gotten banned):

Of Mice and Men

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

To Kill a Mockingbird

Six books written by Dr. Seuss

For the record, I, like pretty much every person today, finds use of the N word despicable. Yet, the fact is that “Huck Finn” is an American classic. Should Huckleberry Finn be banned because Mark Twain used a word which may have been acceptable in the late 1800s but is now rightly seen as disgusting? Of course not. Dr. Seuss is coming under fire because some radicals’ sensibilities are offended over artwork. Dr. Seuss was the least racist person of his time. Continue reading

Virginia: Look West To See What’s Coming

by Kerry Dougherty

Reason #5,692 not to vote for ANY Democrats running for the General Assembly this fall:

We all know that Virginia’s leftists in Richmond yearn for our lovely commonwealth to be more like California. When last they controlled the state legislature these nuts directly tethered our energy policies to that “progressive” utopia.

It won’t stop there, so let’s see what else is on its way from the West Coast.

Looky here! It’s Assembly Bill 665, working its way through the legislature. When this passes — and it’s just wacky enough to win approval — it would essentially emancipate some 12-year-olds, allowing them to seek mental health care without their parents’ approval. Continue reading

Post Attacks Homeschooling Because It Succeeds

Derrick Max

by Derrick Max

Over the last few years, homeschooling has grown in Virginia by almost 40 percent. In fact, homeschoolers in Virginia now account for almost 60,000 students — making homeschooling the fifth largest school district in the Commonwealth. Because homeschoolers are self-funded, this saves Virginia’s state and local governments almost $800 million per year.

More importantly, homeschoolers outperform public school students in almost every measurable category. Homeschoolers score significantly higher on standardized tests, have higher college graduation rates, lower rates of depression and anxiety, and succeed at higher rates as adults.

Yet, The Washington Post reported in The Revolt of the Christian Home-Schoolers (May 30, 2023), based almost solely on one couple’s experience, as a “conscious rejection of contemporary ideas about biology, history, gender equity and the role of religion in American Government.” The article, with scant evidence, concludes that there is an “unmistakable backlash” of formerly homeschooled children denouncing homeschooling.

Riddled with references to “indoctrination” and “abuse,” homeschooling is painted by The Washington Post as a fringe and dangerous educational option. These homeschoolers “could not recover or reconstruct the lost opportunities of their childhood” as “there were so many things they had not learned.” Continue reading

School Boards, Model Policies and Parental Rights in the Raising of Children

by James C. Sherlock

The Virginia Beach School Board will vote tomorrow.

The announced subject will be transgender rights in schools.

It is couched by The Virginian-Pilot as the school board defending transgender students against “unnecessarily cruel policies.  As opposed, one supposes, to necessarily cruel policies.

The local paper refers, of course, to the Youngkin administration’s “Model Policies” on the subject. Which, like their predecessors from the Northam administration, are not mandatory, so need not be debated at all.

The School Board debate is at its core constitutional.

You will note that the Youngkin Model Policies linked its constitutional interpretations to court decisions. The Northam version did not. Northam’s just asserted what the constitution meant. Must have been an oversight.

My take:

  • Families are responsible for shaping the values, beliefs, and personalities of children;
  • Government is required to protect children from abuse and neglect. But government schools are not allowed to substitute their judgements on values and beliefs for those of the families;
  • They are most certainly not permitted to define parental moral or political disagreements with school personnel as emotional abuse at home. Or as harassment of government schools or teachers;
  • And government schools, absent evidence of abuse or neglect, must never be allowed to substitute their own moral judgments for those of parents.

But that’s just me. Not a lawyer. Continue reading

Judge Orders LCPS to Turn Over Investigation into the Assaults and Rape at Two County Schools

by Jeanine Martin

Loudoun County Circuit Court Judge James P. Fischer has ordered Loudoun County Public Schools to turn over its internal investigation into the assaults and rape that occurred in 2021 at two Loudoun County high schools.

The school system had argued that it was privileged information that they need not share with the public. Judge Fischer disagreed and ordered the report to be turned over to the public within 7 days.

From WTOP.com:

The ruling is a win for Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares, who has been fighting to expose how he says the school district mishandled the incidents.

The judge agreed with prosecutors from the Miyares’ office that the internal report on the 2021 sexual assaults and rape on school grounds was not protected under attorney-client privilege — noting that then-Superintendent Scott Ziegler gave the perception that any findings from the independent investigation were for the public’s benefit.

In a statement, Miyares’ spokeswoman Victoria LaCivita said in part, “We appreciate the courts time and attention to this matter.”

More on the story here.

This piece was originally appeared in The Bull Elephant and is reprinted with permission.

FIVE QUESTIONS: Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares

by Shaun Kenney

Last week, TRS was able to sit down and talk with Virginia’s Attorney General Jason Miyares (R-VA) about the challenges he is facing from opioid and fentanyl abuse to the FBI Richmond’s targeting of Catholics in the public square.

Miyares — a longstanding conservative in the tradition of Ronald Reagan and a leading thinker in his own right — shares his convictions, his hope for civility over violence, and some discussion on what he rightly calls the American Miracle.

So it seems as if some congratulations are in order. Russian President Vladimir Putin has put you on the Russian sanctions list. What did you do to earn such an esteemed award?

Yeah, I keep making lists!

I keep visiting with the Uigurs in Northern Virginia. I find it interesting but not surprising because we have such a different worldview. I detest autocracy and tyranny in all forms. When Putin said that the collapse of the Soviet Union was the single greatest catastrophe of the 20th century, I view that as Ronald Reagan’s greatest victory.

Yet the reality of any autocratic regime is that ideology trumps the individual. C.S. Lewis said that of all the tyrannies in the world, the tyrannies that are for your benefit are the worst in the world. Solzhenitsyn writes about this in the Gulag Archipelago.
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

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

Virginia Democrats in the House of Representatives Vote Against Their Own Daughters

USA Women’s National Team 2019

by James C. Sherlock

Abigail Spanberger, (D) Va. – Voted against protections for girls and women in sports

Every Virginia Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives voted against a bill to amend Title IX to prohibit biological boys and men from competing against biological girls and women in K-12 and college sports.

Voting nay: Donald Beyer, Gerald Connolly, Jennifer McClellan, Bobby Scott, Abigail Spanberger and Jennifer Wexton.

H.R. 734 Protection of Women and Girls in Sports Act of 2023 amends Title IX (“on the basis of sex”) by stating that the term “sex” in athletics shall be recognized based solely on a person’s reproductive biology and genetics at birth.

Jennifer McClellan (D) Va. – Voted against protections for girls and women in sports

The consequences of a no vote. H.R. 734 protects the dreams and hard work of girls who wish to play college sports.

The ones who got up early and stayed late training for their sport. The ones whose parents ferried them to practice and games on weekends.

It protects girls and young women in contact sports such as soccer and field hockey from inevitable injury from bigger, stronger, faster men.

Indeed, it protects their ability to participate.

It prevents the biological male who never won a medal from deciding — no hormones or surgery required — he is female to mount the platform and be awarded the gold. To break records set by girls and women.

To get rich with the new NIL rule in college sports and richer yet in women’s professional sports.

Everyone who thinks that won’t happen, raise your hand. Continue reading

Fourth Circuit Gives Standing to Parents Suing Loudoun County Schools over First Amendment Violations

Ian Serotkin
LCPS School Board Chair, Defendant

by James C. Sherlock

In a win for freedom of speech, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Richmond overturned a finding by a federal district judge that Loudoun parents did not have standing to sue the School Board for infringement of First Amendment rights.

The parents alleged a bias reporting system instituted by Loudoun County Public Schools “chilled their children from exercising their free speech rights.”

The ruling:

… the parents plausibly allege that implementing the new reporting system chilled their children’s speech to support their First Amendment claims. So, we vacate the district court’s order dismissing those claims and remand for those claims to be considered on the merits.

I suspect the new trial and appeals will find even the current, revised LCPS policy on reporting to be intended to chill protected speech. Continue reading

Crime in Virginia — the Statistics of Race and their Causes

by James C. Sherlock

Crime, especially violent crime, is a constant topic in private conversations and in public politics, and thus here on Bacon’s Rebellion.

Comments on BR crime-related articles turn quickly to race, often without basis in fact.

I will offer below the actual crime statistics by race from 2021, the latest available year, in an attempt to cure that.

Then I will write about the causes.

I will almost certainly be called a racist. Continue reading

Arlington CPS Seizes Baby Girl Over Tylenol

by Asra Q. Nomani and Debra Tisler

Late Wednesday afternoon, in Courtroom 4B of Arlington County’s Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court, Sean Jackson beamed widely as a judge granted him and his parents, Carlos Makle and Kim Jackson-Makle, joint custody of Sean’s baby girl, Amoria, instead of relegating her to foster care or instability with a mother struggling with drug addiction.

Kim later said, “Hallelujah,” thinking the nightmare they had been living for over a year with the County’s inept Division of Child Protective Services was finally over. But it was just about to begin all over again. Arlington County’s Child Protective Services was about to dispatch a social worker to an apartment in Arlington to seize Amoria’s second cousin, London, also a cute baby girl, from her mother, Paris Adams.

Why?

Over an alleged missed dosage of Tylenol Wednesday morning that the baby wasn’t even required to get, per doctor’s orders, but was rather prescribed “as needed.” With so much written in the news about public policy, legislation and politics, this story is disturbing because of the sheer inhumanity of bureaucrats operating with complete disregard for actual child welfare or a mother’s heartache.

First, a rewind.
Continue reading

Public School Climate Lessons Terrorize Virginia’s Children

Courtesy of the BBC

by James C. Sherlock

A headline from the home page of Save the Children:

Climate Change Is a Grave Threat to Children’s Survival.” 

Climate change is thus not a “challenge.” Not a threat to children’s happiness. But rather a threat to their “survival.”

That is what children are being taught in many Virginia public school classrooms. Kids, being sponges, have learned that lesson, and are understandably severely depressed about it.

Parents and the Board of Education, take note. That cannot be allowed to continue.

For years, studies have shown the existence of psychological distress about climate change that has dimensions within feelings, emotions, cognition and behavior. That stress has been demonstrated to disproportionately affect young people.

The largest and most international study of climate anxiety in young people was peer-reviewed and posted in The Lancet in December 2021.

Regardless of one’s personal feelings about climate change, no caring adult would want, as revealed in that study, children feeling “very or extremely worried” (46% of children in the United States) or, worse, negatively affected in their ability to function (26% of children in the United States).

None would want near half or more than half of children reporting feeling “sad, anxious, angry, powerless, helpless and guilty” and “betrayed” about anything, much less a phenomenon that is measurable as a current event with which we are dealing but arguably is overstated by progressives as a future prospect.

Climate change can, and should, be taught to children. But it must be done without terrorizing them. That cannot be too much to ask.

Scaring children to turn them into political activists is child abuse per se.

It must stop. Continue reading