President Joe Biden’s White House colluded with the National School Boards Association to launch a war on parents who want to hold their school districts accountable by sharing information the administration thought could be used to justify domestic terrorism charges.
Emails obtained by Parents Defending Education through the Freedom of Information Act indicate that NSBA President Viola Garcia and CEO Chip Slaven conspired and exchanged information with the White House before releasing an official demand from the Biden administration to get federal law enforcement involved in targeting parents.
In a Sept. 29 email to the board, Slaven explained that there were “talks over the last several weeks with White House staff” who “requested additional information on some of the specific threats, so the letter also details many of the incidents that have been occurring.”
Garcia also wrote an email to the board on Oct. 2 saying the NSBA communicated with the White House “for several weeks” to gather examples of acts of protest against school boards across the nation.
“We felt compelled to say something when we started hearing about the threats, harassment, and acts of intimidation at school board meetings,” she wrote.
The emails also show that the NSBA’s board of directors, much like the state school board associations that condemned the national organization over the letter, were not consulted about the plea before it was released to the public.
On Sept. 29, the NSBA sent a formal letter to the White House begging the Biden administration and federal law enforcement to use domestic terrorism laws against concerned parents to “deal with the growing number of threats of violence and acts of intimidation occurring across the nation.” The corporate media quickly amplified the letter, framing it as a genuine plea for help against an “intense” and growing threat.
Most of the incidents the NSBA cited to justify federal intervention did not even escalate to arrests or charges on the local level, yet Attorney General Merrick Garland quickly directed the FBI and state attorneys to address “a disturbing spike in harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence against school administrators, board members, teachers, and staff who participate in the vital work of running our nation’s public schools.”
This prompted outrage from some of the directors who said the letter, which was sent without their knowledge, may “have fanned those flames of hostility and division … [r]ather than helping our cause and calming the waters.”
“Many of us have been put in a position now of explaining or defending this action of our association as we are asked by members of our community if we consider them domestic terrorists for showing up to our meetings and expressing their opinions,” a central region director, John W. Halkias, wrote in an email on Oct. 1.
Halkias indicated that he was just one of “many of my colleagues” who believed they should have known about and reviewed the letter before it was sent.
“I also agree that the letter took a stance that went beyond what many of us would consider to be reasonable and used terms that were extreme, and asked for action by the Federal Government that many of us would not request,” he wrote. “Local control has been a stalwart of our principles, and we do not want to abandon that concept now.”
Garcia tried to justify her actions in an email on Oct. 11 by claiming that the “pattern of threats and violence occurring across state lines and via online platforms” quickly required “the federal government’s assistance.”
In a House Judiciary hearing on Thursday, Garland admitted that the basis for targeting and potentially charging parents concerned about what their children are learning in schools with domestic terrorism was the official letter from the NSBA, not real evidence.