The nation's eyes are on critical race theory, but just as critical is what's happening with sex ed. While parents everywhere rise up over the flood of woke curriculum, they're also getting a good look behind the curtain at what their children are hearing about sex. And it's just as shocking -- if not worse. It's so graphic, one Minnesota state representative told a reporter, that her colleagues didn't even want to look at the examples on the House floor.
"We couldn't show this on the 10 [o'clock] news," she said, but "we want our fourth-grade children to be looking at this?"
No way, parents are saying. In New York, where one private school is in hot water for showing cartoons about masturbation to first graders, moms and dads are on the warpath. The $55,000-a-year primary school tried to suggest that families had "misinterpreted" the lessons. Don't worry, Justine Ang Fonte (who was also responsible for the "porn literacy" class that made national headlines) insists. She doesn't use the word "masturbation" in class, she promises, and her lessons teach kids not to "touch themselves in public." As if this is somehow a relief to parents who are forking over college-level tuition rates for their six-year-old to learn words like "erection."
"She teaches kids about ‘consent,'" one mom fumed, "yet she has never gotten consent from parents about the sexually explicit and age-inappropriate material about transgender to first-graders."
In Chicago, home of the condoms-for-fifth-graders program, school officials insist that the effort is part of combatting racism. Sex education, the district's Doctor Kenneth Fox argues, is now a matter of "equity and justice." You just can't make this stuff up. As a bonus, according to NPR, the book these children get includes full-color illustrations of naked people and sections on sexual orientation.
It's out of control, Family Watch International's Sharon Slater said on Friday's "Washington Watch." As extreme as Barack Obama's approach to comprehensive sex education was, this administration is taking the extremism to a new level. We've had all of this build up over critical race theory, she agrees, and people are very engaged. And that's the sort of energy that America needs talking about these unacceptable lessons creeping into our classrooms. Because, as Sharon pointed out, it's only going to get worse.
"Little known to most parents is under the Obama administration, the U.S. government started spending over a $100 million dollars on comprehensive sexuality education, getting it to your children with your tax dollars. And now under the Biden administration -- in fact, just this week -- the House Appropriations Committee just approved $130 million dollars for this radical comprehensive sex ed which sexualizes children. We sometimes call it abortion rights, sexual rights, LGBT rights, indoctrination education or sexualization education" -- something Family Watch International calls one of "the greatest assaults on the health and innocence of our children."
Parents in Russell County, Va. must have gotten that memo, because late last week they sent a resounding message to state leaders that they won't tolerate this radicalism. The Commonwealth, which continues to have the most explosive education debate in the country, is the latest to mandate that districts not only throw open their bathroom and locker room doors to both genders, but that teachers and other staff use gender-preferred pronouns. The idea hasn't gone over so well in the southern part of the state, where 500 people packed into the school board room and demanded an end to the radical LGBT programs trying to infiltrate the state's schools.
"We do not hate transgender people," one parent insisted. "We do not hate homosexual people. We do not judge them....The problem that we have in the community today is that [it's] trying to be pushed on all of our children."
Another mom threatened to withdraw her son from the school if the policies were adopted.
"My son will not be attending [the county] schools," she vowed. "I will choose to homeschool him if this policy is adopted. It will not be easy to homeschool, as I'm sure it will be very financially tough, but I will stand for what is right."
Attorney Josh Hetzler, who said his Founding Freedoms Law Center is prepared to sue, says that the entire policy is unconstitutional. Consider the "the likelihood of tangible harms to student's bodily privacy, safety, and dignity in private spaces," he argued. "[The] school board simply cannot adopt policies consistent with the existing model policy."
Unlike northern Virginia, where Loudoun and Fairfax County officials stubbornly refuse to listen to local citizens, Russell's school board unanimously rejected the rules -- despite a threat from the Virginia Department of Education that there will be consequences.
So be it, school board member Bob Gibson said. "I was elected by the people of this community, and I intend to stand up to protect every kid and do the will of the people of Russell County -- and not that of an overreaching state government," he said in a statement. "The most important thing we can do is protect every kid and to provide them with a safe and secure place to learn."
If you're wondering who's driving these wildly inappropriate sex ed programs, look no farther than Planned Parenthood, Sharon says. "They actually brag about being the largest provider of comprehensive sexuality education or sex education in the United States...and they mostly have a monopoly on all the curriculum that is being ordered through the U.S. government. Those who are getting federal grants, part of that $100 million dollars, they're usually getting their programs from [Planned Parenthood's publishing arm called] ETR and Associates." And incredibly, she explains, they market some of these pornographic curricula as "abstinence education," when it's actually a "how-to" book on everything from anal to oral sex.
It's all a part of their broader marketing plan. Once Planned Parenthood hooks our children on sex, they'll be able to sell them condoms, contraception, and abortions.
"And we would encourage everybody to become a part of the solution and fight this in your state," Sharon urges. On her StopCSE.org website, you can find out exactly what's happening in your state -- including where comprehensive sex ed programs are getting federal funding. Click on the USA map, and you'll see all of your local laws related to parental rights and sex education. Sharon is determined to help parents understand what red flags to look for and how to document things so that when you speak out, you're completely prepared. And as far as she's concerned, there's never been a better time than now to stand up and say: not our children. Not on our watch.
Tony Perkins is president of the Family Research Council.
Editor's Note: This piece originally appeared on the Family Research Council.