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There was a clash of ideologies this week in Sarasota County, Florida, as frustrated parents confronted the local school board about teaching the oft-violent Black Lives Matter political movement as part of the curriculum.
The parents were part of a mom’s group, Concerned Parents of Sarasota Schools, and wore bright red t-shirts as a sign of solidarity, WFLA reported. Some of them faced off against Black Lives Matter activists in the parking lot during a Tuesday night Sarasota County School Board meeting.
One parent speaking at the meeting chastised the school board for trying to “jump on the ‘woke’ bandwagon.”
“What happened?” she asked the board. “Did you suddenly decide our schools have terrible racism problems?”
“This school board wants to bring in radical ideologies embraced by BLM and Antifa,” the concerned parent added. “Ideologies that include dismantling the nuclear family and defunding the police.”
A school board spokesperson said teachers have been discussing the movement with students as it is part of current events, according to WFLA.
The parent also cited a first-hand experience the community has had with the BLM movement.
“We watched BLM activists recently in St. Pete ambush diners, and scream in their face and demand they raise a fist,” the irate woman said. “These bullying tactics and violent scenes scare children like the screaming seen outside. Don’t think incidents won’t happen in our schools like this.”
“If you’re a teacher, your child shouldn’t know what your political stance is. That’s not in the classroom, and that’s been part of the problem,” Ashley Cote told WFLA.
A mother of a second-grader and founder of the group, Cote is furious that the Black Lives Matter movement is being taught, calling it a radical, terrorist group, according to the NBC affiliate.
“It makes me very angry, so angry that I want to do more about it,” she explained.
A Black Lives Matter activist said this is part of history, claiming that BLM is “not a political movement.”
“I’m here today because I’m appalled at the idea that Sarasota County and their parents think they even have the right to once again whitewash history,” Sarah Parker said. “I’m angry and I’m sad for so many years, and we’re talking hundreds, black history has not been taught to our children. It has been hidden between the lines of white patriarchy and the sound of the wannabe victors.”
Parker said the American history of violence against black people is not being taught, and that children “should be taught the whole dirty truth about American history.”
As for teaching the Black Lives Matter ideology, the activist said while its a “reluctant, slow start,” it still wasn’t enough.
Par for the course, Parker warned those who stand in the way.
“If you tried to impede on the slow start, you’re no better than the parents shouting at Ruby Bridges when she desegregated public schools,” she said. “You’re no better than the people who just turned their heads on the mass lynching of black men in the early 1920s and 60s. You are no better than the people who voted against interracial and gay marriage.”
“You are no better,” Parker said. “We know that and one day your children will know that. You have to pick a side. There’s no straddling fences.”
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