They'll Stop at Nothing

Over the objections of thousands of Prince William County parents and students throughout the past year, not to mention a mountain of unanswered legal questions, the school board there defiantly voted (5-3) last night to push through a policy that could allow boys in Prince William County schools to use the girls' locker rooms, bathrooms, and showers, and even to be paired with females in overnight lodging situations.

And what was the Board's response to these concerns? Well, it wasn't to deny that these things would now be permissible, but instead only to dismissively declare various versions of "Oh, that'll never happen." Such a response does make you wonder if these folks really know anything at all about the experience of middle school and high school, adolescent males, teenagers generally, history, or human nature.

Or more likely, they just don't care.

The Board's action last night came after a groundswell of outrage and public pressure last September forced the Board to punt on the issue until this summer (conveniently when school would be out and parents would be less engaged with school policies, or on vacation).  In that time, the Board managed to gather the cover they needed in order for a majority of them to vote to place every child in danger - ironically in the name of "safety for all." After going practically off the radar since September, the LGBT activists emerged for yesterday's meeting highly mobilized and organized, all of them showing up more than two hours early to pack the front of the room, and all of them decked out in purple.  Even so, as the evening progressed, more and more opponents of the policy change arrived, ending with a crowd split about evenly.

And while the Board and proponents tried to sidestep the issue of opposite sex children in intimate settings by including “guidance” language that says bathroom and locker room policies won’t change, the reality is that the policy adopted cannot be limited in such a way.  

But last night’s vote was really just part of the story.  Just hours before the meeting, it was revealed that the school board chairman, Ryan Sawyers, ripping a page out of Governor Terry McAuliffe’s playbook of ignoring the law and policy, had tried to use his power and influence to manipulate who was allowed to speak during the required public comment period.  Board policy states that the first ten people who sign up with the Board clerk speak, but the chair had sent text messages to the clerk demanding that the names he submitted be placed “at the top of the list.”  Exposed through a Freedom of Information Act from Delegate Bob Marshall (R-13, Manassas), the Board then received a letter from our friends at Alliance Defending Freedom explaining that if normal rules weren’t followed, any vote would be subject to legal challenge.

Unlike Governor McAuliffe’s Board of Health, which flippantly ignored the law when it scaled back abortion center safety standards, the Board backed off and followed normal public comment policy.

But both the willingness of the Board chair to ignore the law and the mobilization of secular progressives shows that those who wish to force their dangerous agenda on our children will stop at nothing to accomplish their goal.  Public outrage doesn’t matter, the law doesn’t matter, truth doesn’t matter, science doesn’t matter.

So what’s the answer?  Pro-family Virginians need to re-double our efforts to organize and mobilize.  Churches need to stand up and be willing to mobilize to school board meetings across Virginia.  And, people who understand that the dignity, privacy and safety of our children – not to mention DNA – matter need to run for school boards across Virginia!

If science and reality don’t affect school board members, maybe a few election losses will.