Gavin Newsom, Tony Thurmond and Rob Bonta have been waging war on local school boards calling members in some instances 'right wing extremists' and threatening fines or other penalties if they do not comply.
For example, Newsom threatened to fine the Temecula Valley Unified School District $1.5 million if it did not adopt a social studies curriculum that mentioned Harvey Milk, which the school board voted against. Under pressure, the school board eventually reversed it's decision.
Earlier this week the Governor spoke on California's family agenda saying “there is no state in America that supports local control and parental engagement like the state of California.” However, he also said he would be looking at legislation to interrupt the ability of school boards to ban books.
Legislators have also challenged school boards' transgender notification policies that require schools to notify parents when their child comes out as transgender or non-binary.
Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tony Thurmond (D), and Attorney General Bonta (D) argue that these policies violate the privacy rights of transgender students.
Attorney General Bonta (D) has launched a civil rights investigation into Chino Valley Unified School District who voted in favor of parental notification.
“Students should never fear going to school for simply being who they are,” “Chino Valley Unified’s forced outing policy threatens the safety and well-being of LGBTQ+ students vulnerable to harassment and potential abuse from peers and family members unaccepting of their gender identity, said Attorney General Bonta.
Tony Thurmond has introduced a bill “which would levy a fine on any school district that bans a book in order to discriminate against students of color and/or LGBTQ plus students”.
Thurmond announced via X formerly known as Twitter, that he is "seriously considering" a run for governor in 2026. "Right now I'm fully focused on my job as State Superintendent- from taking on MAGA extremists who want to ban books to defending classroom teachers and students against the constant assault on our democracy"
Black Political Opinion: California Democrat supermajority is becoming a threat to democracy
California is one of the most liberal states in the country, and its Democratic supermajority in the legislature has only served to solidify that status. This has had a number of consequences for parents, particularly those with conservative views.
Some perceive California is increasingly encroaching on parental rights. This is a trend that is deeply troubling to many parents, who believe that they should have the ultimate say in the education and upbringing of their children.
Local school boards are elected by the people in their community to represent their values, views, and desires for the public schools in their district. They are the ones who make decisions about curriculum, instruction, and school policies.
The Democratic Party has been the dominant party for many years and it is unlikely that this will change anytime soon. It's doubtful that California is becoming a hotbed of MAGA extremism impacting the California Department of Education as Superintendent Thurmond alluded to.
Governor Newsom and the supermajority should not impose ideology on local school boards. This is a dangerous and undemocratic move that undermines the authority of local officials and the rights of parents.
Black Political Opinion is a multi-part opinion-editorial series that looks at various political topics, news, and views, from the perspective of a Black female, conservative leaning Independent.
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