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Virginia teachers’ Facebook group reportedly targeting parents opposed to critical race theory

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Loudoun County

An “Anti-Racist” Facebook group, made up of Virginia parents, teachers and school board members, is reportedly targeting parents who are opposed to critical race theory as part of the school’s curriculum.

The group, which is called “anti-racist parents of Loudoun County,” has over 600 members, including “six out of nine” Loudoun County school board members, WTOP News reported.

The group urged its members to gather information on parents who oppose critical race theory and encouraged members to “expose these people publicly,” The Dairy Wire reported.

Austin Levine, a Loudoun County parent, said at a March 23 school board meeting that he was targeted by the Facebook group.

“I am on a list — not Santa’s list — but a list of enemies created by a group led by the marching orders of one of your colleagues,” Levine said, according to WTOP.

“This list included names, places of work, where they lived and their perceived wrongs. I should not have to live in fear because my opinions differ from elected officials’,” Levine said.

Moreover, Levine said there should be “severe punishment” for the group members’ intentional actions.

“Unintended actions, those are forgivable, but intended consequences are not — so when they happen there should be severe punishment,” Levine said at the meeting. “The lists, the crimes, the docs were all your intentions. The ‘thank you’ post on the Facebook group provides undeniable evidence that the outcome met your approval.”

Ian Prior, spokesperson for Loudoun Parents for Education, said that the actions by the Facebook group members constitute a violation of the First Amendment.

“We believe in free speech, in the marketplace of ideas,” he said.

Prior and the other members of the Loudoun Parents for Education group are planning a campaign to recall the school board members allegedly involved in the Facebook group, and the group plans to hold a new election for those seats.

“We’re going to do our best to bring people together to run a campaign to recall those six members that were taking part in this group and clearly were not serving the community,” Prior said. “It’s clear that we have a school board that is quite simply not up to the task.”

Loudoun County Public Schools interim Superintendent Scott Ziegler denied that critical race theory is part of the school’s curriculum.

“Social media rumors that staff members have been disciplined or fired for not adhering to the tenants of critical race theory or for refusing to teach this theory are not true,” Ziegler said in a video statement released to the school community.

Ziegler added that the Loudoun County School provides a “welcoming, inclusive, affirming environment for all students.” He said recent media reports and social media posts have misrepresented the school’s effort to achieve these goals.

“In explaining LCPS’ equity priorities, it might be helpful to state what they are not. They are not an effort to indoctrinate students and staff into a particular philosophy or theory,” Ziegler said.

“LCPS has not adopted Critical Race Theory as a framework for staff to adhere to,” he added.

In response to the “Anti-Racist” Facebook group, Ziegler said while LCPS recognizes the rights of its employees to free speech, it does not condone targeting members of the community for their viewpoint.

His goal is to ensure “every student, employee and member of the community is treated in an equitable, respectful manner.”

The Facebook group is reportedly currently under investigation by the Virginia police.

Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy

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Boston Celtics Player Legally Changing Name to ‘Enes Kanter Freedom’ to Celebrate U.S. Citizenship

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GettyImages 1343392450
Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images

Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter is celebrating becoming a U.S. citizen in an incredible way. The 29-year-old athlete from Turkey is having his citizenship oath ceremony Monday, and will legally change his name to Enes Kanter Freedom.

Kanter is an outspoken human rights advocate who had his Turkish passport revoked in 2017 after he criticized Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Mediaite reports “he has also criticized NBA stars Michael Jordan and LeBron James for not doing enough to help the Black community and not speaking out against exploitative labor practices in China respectively.”

Celtics head coach Ime Udoka told the Boston Globe the team is “all for” the player’s name change. Kanter’s manager says the player will complete his legal name change to have Kanter become his middle name and Freedom be his new last name at Monday’s ceremony.

“We congratulated him as a group for getting his American citizenship last week,” Udoka said. “That’s who Enes is, we’re proud of him. Enes is who he is. He’s passionate about his stances and the name change; you look at [Ron] Artest [who changed his name to Metta Sandiford-Artest in the middle of the COVID-19 outbreak] and guys that have done it in the past. It’s something he wants to express and we’re all for it.”

Kanter has already changed his official Twitter account to Enes Kanter FREEDOM with his new last name in all caps. Freedom made waves when he tweeted the following on November 18: Money over Morals for the ‘King’. Sad & disgusting how these athletes pretend they care about social justice. They really do ‘shut up & dribble’ when Big Boss [inserted Chinese flag] says so. Did you educate yourself about the slave labor that made your shoes or is that not part of your research?”

The tweet included photos of basketball shoes he wore painted with human rights depictions and phrases such as “hey still researching and getting educated?” as well as “I am informed and educated on the situation.”

The statement is with regard to his criticism of LeBron James’ partnership with Nike. “Nike remains one of the NBA’s biggest sponsors as both organizations feed off their partnerships with China” reports Mediaite. Kanter Freedom also made an offer to take Michael Jordan and Nike co-founder Phil Knight to China in order for the men to “visit these slave labor camps and you can see it with your own eyes.”

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