After Attorney General Merrick Garland sicced the FBI on unruly parents protesting Critical Race Theory (CRT) at school board meetings, it came to light that Garland had a dog in the fight.
That dog is son-in-law Xan Tanner, co-founder of Panorama Education, a leading distributor of CRT materials. Among the materials Panorama has recommended for educators is an essay by terrorist emeritus and Obama pal Bill Ayers.
Titled “I Shall Create! Teaching Toward Freedom,” Ayers’s essay is the first in a 2019 collection by left-wing activist Lisa Delpit. If nothing else, Ayers has been consistent. He has been pumping out frenetic anti-white cant long before it was cool, let alone mandatory.
Writes Ayers in this recent essay, “We must face reality and courageously confront history, tell the truth, and then destroy the entire edifice of white supremacy: metaphorically speaking it means burning down the plantation.” The problem now is that Ayers is no longer an outlier. The same FBI that hounded him and his fellow bombers is now hounding parents who protest his subversive nonsense.
Citizens protest harassment of teacher Angela Bittinger
Pine Valley Central School, a small rural district an hour south of Buffalo, aspires to instill five “intrinsic” values in its students: integrity, perseverance, responsibility, curiosity and community service.
It is hard to imagine a teacher anywhere who embodies those values more courageously than seventh and ninth grade history teacher Angela Bittinger. As Angela has proved through her ordeal, however, what sounded good on paper to school administrators does not hold much appeal for them in real life.
On Tuesday, Angela faced still another administrative hearing in what she described to me as an ongoing “witch hunt.” The district seems to have no larger goal than to make Angela go away.
To paraphrase Jeff Foxworthy, if you feel a shiver of excitement when “school shooting” trends on Twitter, you just might be woke. Last Wednesday, Erica — a nurse and “humanist” — proved her wokeness in spades.
“They’re already making excuses for the shooter ‘he got in a fight with someone,’” she tweeted. “Okay, but who chooses to shoot people? White males are a problem #TexasShooter #EnoughIsEnough.”
Although reluctant to admit as much, many on the Left welcome a school shooting. Perhaps more than any other event, a shooting reinforces their empty mishmash of a worldview. It allows them to flaunt their hatred both of guns and of their lily-white selves. For Erica, the Texas shooting was a twofer — or at least it seemed to be.
Alas, the rush was short-lived. About 20 minutes after the original tweet, Erica tweeted back to her 405 followers, “Oh F***. He’s a POC.” For the record, Erica did not use asterisks, and “POC” is woke shorthand for “person of color.”
Had Big Media been even just a little bit honest about race and crime, Erica would not have embarrassed herself as she did. A well-informed Erica, upon hearing of a school shooting, might have tweeted, “Oh F***. He’s probably a POC.” In the real world, Erica, he almost always is.
Dave Chappelle, arguably America’s best loved comedian, apparently slept through his Intersectionality 101 class, and his would-be woke masters are purple with rage.
The LGBTQ advocacy group GLAAD joined with others in “condemning” Chappelle’s newly released Netflix special, “The Closer.”Said the GLAAD press release: “Dave Chappelle’s brand has become synonymous with ridiculing trans people and other marginalized communities.”
The National Black Justice Coalition, another LGBTQ advocacy group, went full-blown cancel, demanding that Netflix “should immediately pull ‘The Closer’ from its platform and directly apologize to the transgender community.”
“Transgender” is the “T” in LGBTQ. (No one is quite sure about the “Q”). LGBTQ activists have positioned themselves along with blacks, Hispanics, feminists, Asian-Americans, and Muslims among others as a principal subset in the intersectional coalition that has held the Democratic Party together for the last generation.
The biracial Sage Steele, a sports anchor on ESPN, took public issue with Barack Obama’s self-identification as “Black” on the recent census and was rewarded with a suspension.
“Well, congratulations to the president, that’s his thing,” said Steele. “I think that’s fascinating considering his black dad is nowhere to be found, but his white mom and grandma raised him, but OK. You do you. I’m gonna do me.”
Steele may have been a victim of bad timing. Her comments came just as Obama was rolling out a young-adult version of his bestselling 1995 memoir, “Dreams from My Father.” In the interlocking world of American media, she may have stepped on some seriously sensitive toes.
Former Republican U.S. Rep. Todd Akin of Missouri died late Sunday at age 74,” the AP tells us in its Twitter feed. “He sunk his 2012 bid for Senate with a comment about ‘legitimate rape.’”
In shrinking a man’s life to a single sound bite, the AP not only betrayed the essence of the man, but it also missed the nut of the story. Akin did not sink his bid. That bid was sunk from under him by the GOP’s most calculating bigwigs, none more soulless than strategist Karl Rove. “We should sink Todd Akin,” Rove publicly joked that August. “If he’s found mysteriously murdered, don’t look for my whereabouts!”
I got to know Todd Akin well over the years. I first met him in October 2012. Although I supported one of his opponents in Missouri’s senatorial primary that August, I was asked to introduce him and Newt Gingrich then stumping for Todd in a last ditch effort to salvage his campaign.
Two years later, I edited Todd’s book, Firing Back. In the course of this project I met Todd’s stalwart wife Lulli and many of his six children, all of whom adored their father and stuck with him through his travails. If there was a more decent and authentic Christian and conservative in politics, I have not met that person.
Last weekend, I went to the theater to see the Sopranos prequel, The Many Saints of Newark. I watched with the kind of critical eye an astrophysicist might have brought to Star Wars.
At the time of the 1967 Newark riot, the foundational event of the movie, I was a 19-year-old living in Newark with my siblings and widowed mother. My late father had been a Newark cop, and my Uncle Bob, also a cop, was in the thick of the riot from the initial assault on the Fourth Precinct to its bloody end 26 deaths later.
Of note, too, Bob had married into a large Newark Italian family. As a kid, I spent considerable time in the family compound. I knew how that world turned. David Chase should have. An Italian American a few years older than I am, Chase created the stellar HBO series, The Sopranos, and was the creative force behind the movie. In the series, which ran from 1999-2007, there was scarcely a false note. In the movie, alas, scarcely a note rings true.
Not surprisingly, given the times we live in, race is at the heart of the movie’s misfire.
In March 2021, a year into the Covid-19 pandemic, the New York Times shared the results of a comprehensive survey of 35,000 Americans done by Gallup and Franklin Templeton. True to form, the Times refused to face the survey’s epic implications.
The Times started pulling punches in the headline, “Covid’s Partisan Errors: Republicans tend to underestimate Covid risks — and Democrats tend to exaggerate them.” This equivocation papered over the real news hook of the story, namely that health officials and their media enablers scared policy makers, especially in blue states, into making catastrophic, fear-based misjudgments.
“To many liberals, Covid has become another example of the modern Republican Party’s hostility to facts and evidence,” wrote reporter David Leonhardt, unaware that he just delivered a laugh line. In assessing the GOP worldview, Leonhardt, like most of his media colleagues, saw hostility in just about every Republican gesture.
In 2023, after 10 years of broken promises and backroom deals, Kansas City International (KCI) will open a spanking new terminal that few air travelers really wanted.
To get the deal done, airport boosters made all sorts of unseemly concessions to businesses claiming to be women and minority-owned. As happens everywhere, these deals added considerable cost to the final product, but zero value.
Last week, a third partner in the cartel of the “marginalized” that runs America – the LGBTQs – weighed in and proved that its wheels can squeak as loudly as those of its intersectional partners.
A recent story out of Kansas City, the town in which I live, suggests just how eager the Left is to control our lives, right down to the food we eat. The story involves a friendly hole-in-the-wall café whose brave proprietor had had enough.
Another defiant cafe in NY
A little background is in order. In 2008, I somehow emerged as the public face of the opposition to a ballot measure that called for a ban on smoking in bars and restaurants in Kansas City. What made this unusual, and what made me an effective spokesman, was that I never smoked. Well, not that effective—my side lost the election, narrowly.
My side, as I saw it, was not pro-smoking, but pro-freedom. I argued that no law prevented entrepreneurs from banning smoking in their establishments, and no law forced anyone to eat or drink at a place where others smoked. Indeed, once I saw the election results, I half-regretted not having opened a non-smoking restaurant of my own.
Unfortunately, freedom is a much scarcer commodity today than in 2008. Back then, health officials used their bully pulpit to persuade citizens. These officials had one set of solid facts on their side, namely that smoking is dangerous, and one set of dubious assertions, namely that second-hand smoke is a health hazard. In 2008, citizens were allowed to weigh the evidence.