Muslim and Christian parents gathered outside the headquarters of Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) in Maryland on Tuesday to protest the school board’s new policy that does not allow parents to opt out of having their kids taught with LGBTQ materials, according to local reports and footage from the event.
The protest against the new policy was organized by Family Rights for Religious Freedom and Moms for Liberty. Counter-protestors showed up to the event as well to show support for the policy, according to Newsweek. The opt-out policy originally allowed parents to choose whether or not they wanted their children to learn gender-identity lessons in school, the Daily Caller News Foundation previously reported
These protests come amidst multiple lawsuits from parents against MCPS for the policy disallowing opt-outs. The lawsuit alleges the policy is a violation of the First Amendment.
The school board allowed 30 members from each side of the protest to enter the school board meeting, where things got heated. One protestor and former MCPS student against the policy can be heard in a video from independent journalist Ford Fischer saying, “Freedom of religion is a fundamental human right.”
She went on to say that this freedom was under attack, saying, “Churches, synagogues, mosques, religious organizations, and individuals face increasing restrictions as they participate in the public square, express beliefs, or serve in society.”
During the MoCo School Board, several Muslim speakers used the public comment time to support an “opt-out” option from sexuality material.
One described removing opt-out as “intolerance of the faith community” and concluded with “Takbir!”
Some in crowd replied “Allahu Akbar!” pic.twitter.com/OT9WJ1yMqZ
— Ford Fischer (@FordFischer) June 6, 2023
Counter-protestors shouted “secular schools” and held up signs that read “Our rights are not up for debate.” Video shared by Fischer showed a small child speaking to the school board who identified as pansexual, saying, “we deserve to have books in our schools that teach people about LGBTQ.”
Parental rights activist Asra Nomani shared video comparing the crowd sizes of the protestors and counter protestors outside of the school board meeting, saying, “The woke army is not alive anymore.”
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