Twenty-one GOP attorneys general have filed a joint brief in support of a Florida family that sued their school in 2021 for speaking behind their backs to their 13-year-old daughter about changing her name and her preferred bathroom.
Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen, one of the 21, said to the Daily Mail that schools “deliberately” keeping parents in the dark is “unconscionable.”
“Parents have a fundamental and longstanding constitutional right to direct the upbringing and care of their children,” he said.
He added that “unfortunately,” teachers speaking to kids behind their parents’ backs is “happening in schools across the country.”
“It’s past time for the courts to do their job and step in to protect children and put a stop to woke school administrators violating parents’ rights,” he continued.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) May 2, 2022
At the center of the case is mother January Littlejohn.
Littlejohn’s daughter was only 13-years-old when she began expressing confusion about her gender after several of her friends had transitioned.
Littlejohn initially sought the help of school counselors, but they quickly began working behind her back to transition her daughter without her knowing. Indeed, they even came up with a so-called “transgender support plan” for her.
“Eventually we did see the transgender support plan, which was a six-page document that they completed with my daughter, that was 13 at the time behind closed doors, where they asked her questions that would have absolutely impacted her safety, such as which restroom she preferred to use and which sex she preferred to room with on overnight field trips,” Littlejohn said on Fox News last month.
Littlejohn wound up becoming the posterchild for Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill, which prohibits teachers from talking to children about sexuality behind their parents’ backs.
The bill I signed today protects Florida parents like January Littlejohn. School officials manipulated her daughter to “transition,” calling her a male name & pronouns without January’s knowledge or consent. This is wrong & today’s legislation will ensure it doesn’t happen again. pic.twitter.com/qH4VKUgmkO
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) March 28, 2022
She eventually sued her daughter’s school last month.
“After we filed a lawsuit, predictably, the school district filed a motion-to-dismiss. We have filed an opposition to that and we’re waiting on the ruling. But what’s more important is that we’re hearing the same exact MO of excluding and deceiving parents, exactly what we heard here, from parents literally around the country. But the good news is that parents are fighting back and they’re filing lawsuits all around the country,” she told Fox News at the time.
And now, thanks to 21 AGs, she presumably has a fair shot at winning her case.
“When a student considers transitioning gender, parents have a fundamental, constitutional right to be involved in that decision making process. Yet school districts across the country, strong-armed by ideologically driven advocacy groups, have shut parents out of the process and trampled on their fundamental rights,” the AGs’ brief reads.
The brief asks that the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals “reaffirm parents’ longstanding, and fundamental, right to be informed of critical information about their child’s mental health and well-being.”
“The right of parents to direct the care and custody of their children ‘is perhaps the oldest of the fundamental liberty interests recognized by [the Supreme] Court.’ And over the last century, the Supreme Court has reaffirmed that right time and again,” the brief continues.
The brief has been signed by the AGs for Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia and West Virginia.
“Parents should have all the right in the world to be involved in their children’s education and their time in school, especially when it involves life-altering decisions. For a school to allegedly hide vital information from parents is not only sinister, but potentially damaging,” West Virginia Attorney General Patrick said to West Virginia radio station WCBC.
What happened to Littlejohn’s family is, sadly, nothing new.
“We deal with moms almost every day whose children are either captured in some way by gender identity indoctrination or gender dysphoria or schools that are intervening in really inappropriate ways with children outside the consent and knowledge of parents,” Moms for Liberty co-founder Tiffany Justice told The Christian Post back in October of 2022.
“I’ll be the first one to tell you, my child does not need a sexual spirit guide. I birthed that child, I carried them, I’ve raised them, I breastfed them, and I know them better than anyone else. That’s what American parents are saying: I love my child, I accept them as who they are, but stop messing with my kids and putting ideas into their heads because you went through something in your life and are living vicariously through kids,” she added.
Lack of money isn’t the problem in public education- misplaced priorities are the problem.
— Tiffany Justice (@4TiffanyJustice) December 8, 2022
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