Conservative groups rally for parental rights, education freedom at NJ Statehouse
⚫ A rally to demand parental rights in New Jersey
⚫ Protesters unhappy about what kids are taught in school
⚫ Vaccine freedom is also an issue
TRENTON — What was billed as a Parental Rights and Education Freedom Rally took place at the New Jersey Statehouse on Monday.
Paul Lund, one of the organizers of the rally and the New Jersey chapter director for the group No Left Turn in Education, said what’s being taught in school these days has changed, and it’s not for the better.
“A lot of people believe that indoctrination is happening, that it’s not the 3 R’s anymore, but sex and race has come to be such a big part, and politics,” he said.
Keep politics to yourself?
Lund, who teaches math and science at the Ombudsman alternative school in Washington Township, said “I think we do want to keep parental rights and education freedom front and center, government schools are somewhat of a monopoly and the taxpayers should have more say in how they conduct their business of education.”
Rally co-organizer Greg Quinlan, the president of the conservative and anti-LGBT Center for Garden State Families, said parents all over New Jersey are very concerned about what’s being taught to their children because it may not be age-appropriate.
“We’re here to say that parents have rights, parents need the choice to send their child with their money to the school of their choice, the money should follow the child," he said.
He said his organization is opposed to some of the books students are reading, some vaccinations that are mandatory, and some of the material that’s being taught.
“You have in 8th grade where they’re taught about pep and prep, these are serious drugs, they require blood tests and it’s under the alleged idea that it’s going to prevent you from getting HIV AIDS,” he said.
He said there is now an “education industrial complex” that is detrimental to the national quality of education and the mental health and safety of our children and parents need to take a stand.
“These are your children, they belong to you, you have the right to decide where their education is going, you have the right to determine what’s best for that child and nobody knows that child better than you do.”
He added some people who are speaking out for education freedom are teachers “who are very upset by what’s going on, that their own rights are being violated, their civil rights are being taken for granted and sometimes they’re actually being threatened with their jobs.”
Lund said he’s been teaching for 14 years.
“I’ve seen a lot of well-intentioned legislation from No Child Left Behind, anti-bullying policies, and I still teach today, and a lot of my students feel less safe than ever before," he said.
Other groups represented at the rally included Working Together for New Jersey, LIFENET, The Children’s Health Defense, Freedom Loving Teachers and Moms For America.
David Matthau is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at email@example.com
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