Donald Trump’s unfathomable success has been due to playing on the fears and worries of disenfranchised voters. I see the same thing with First State Liberty’s overzealous attacks on the Christina School District referendum taking place on March 23rd. It is becoming more than obvious there is more than meets the eye with First State Liberty. Meanwhile, none other than Governor Jack Alan Markell did a video for the district which supports the referendum and urges voters to say yes on Wednesday.
There are a multitude of things I don’t agree with Governor Markell about on education. But there are two things I think we can draw agreement on: support for the Christina referendum and we both oppose school vouchers. I think most can agree the whole referendum process stinks. But until there is another method or funding mechanism for our schools in Delaware, voting no on a referendum hurts children most of all. As I just said to someone on Facebook in regards to the mindset of First State Liberty: “We know the ship is going to sink. Instead of plugging the hole, we’re going to shoot a cannonball into it so it sinks faster.” If a district doesn’t pass a referendum when they really need the funds, it will have a downward spiral that comes down to each and every student in the district.
The referendum opposers are getting robo-calls and emails from a right-wing group called First State Liberty. I wrote an article about them the other day. Who is supporting them? The Delaware blogger Kavips did some digging last week and found out who was backing the robo-calls. Many of the leaders of these organizations put their children in private schools. They resent the fact they pay tuition for their children and pay school taxes. They seem to forget that all citizens pay this. They want voucher programs which have failed miserably in many states. In Delaware, State Rep. Deb Hudson has tried to get voucher legislation through, but it doesn’t get past the bill filing.
When pushed to respond to requests to come to Citizens Budget Oversight Committee meetings in Christina, the front people behind First State Liberty don’t even respond to the invitation. They come out once a year before these referendums and act like it is The Day After Tomorrow if a referendum passes. They forget children are involved in their schemes and agendas and don’t care if students are affected the most by the damage they do. They like to tout the Revolutionary War as their greatest inspiration. They don’t realize the differences between the people from 240 years ago and what is going on in the present. They will say and do anything to advance their agenda. They lure people into their fold and they spout lies and untruths. Then they get their followers to do the same. It is a sad and pathetic situation.
Do I think our school districts could do a better job? Absolutely. They all play the absurd “Delaware Way” game where parties must compromise. They just want a seat at the table without realizing they are on the table. The compromises result in districts being forced to shell out more money for services to properly educate children based on state mandates. What First State Liberty should take a more active role in is this conundrum. Instead, they want to target children and their classrooms. Forget everything they say about “administrative costs” and “spending per pupil”. Their theories are debunked on a daily basis anymore.
I’ve said it before, when children lose, we all lose. Even Governor Markell understands this simple fact. Why can’t First State Liberty, who could be doing so much more in Delaware, get this concept? Why do they target school districts but do absolutely nothing about the even bigger problem? Do they have the political muscle to do more than bully referendum voters? Of course, no one from their outfit will respond with intelligent answers on these issues. When challenged, they delete information from supporters or just ignore it. Why are they so hell-bent on destroying school districts? Is it because their kids aren’t in public education and they don’t care what happens to other families kids? I will fully admit, my son is in private school but I would still vote yes for this referendum if I lived in the Christina School District. It’s about the kids, not your wallets. Playing on the fears of unsuspecting citizens and giving false information while doing so is not only disingenuous, but bad form.
Lest we forget, this is the same outfit that thought it was okay to bring guns to Newark City Council meetings. This is the same outfit that some right-wing groups really don’t want to be associated with. But when it comes to referendums, it is okay for their hate and fear mongering? Wake up Delaware citizens. Don’t buy their hate-filled propaganda and smear campaigns. They aren’t in it for you, they are in it for themselves. I have some conservative ideals myself, but there is an ocean of difference between conservative ideals and this. Shame on you First State Liberty…