Good morning –
Readers aren’t pleased with the Texas Association of School Boards… or the local school board members who aren’t forcing the organization to do the right thing by parents, taxpayers, teachers, and kids.
More on that at the end of today's Texas Minute.
Texas Military Forces: Get Vaxxed Or Get Out
- The Texas Military Department has told leadership within the Texas Army and Air National Guard that their soldiers would be required to receive a COVID-19 vaccination by June of 2022 or face discharge. And, as Jeramy Kitchen reports, those who are not currently vaccinated will not receive drill pay until they become vaccinated starting this month.
- The Texas Military Department is an agency under the purview of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, but it can be subject to federal activation under Title 10 of the U.S. Code.
- In contrast, last month Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt (R) announced that guardsmen in his state would not be required to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
Biden’s Vaccine Mandate Threatens Nuclear Security
- Although President Biden’s vaccine mandate for federal contractors has been halted for now, Sydnie Henry reports that if it is not officially overturned then critical nuclear plant employees in Texas’ high plains region could face termination.
- Between 30-40 percent of the Pantex employees at the nuclear facility in the Texas panhandle are refusing to get injected with the COVID-19 shots. Pantex is responsible for ensuring “the effectiveness of the U.S. nuclear stockpile.” The company has said unvaccinated employees will be placed on unpaid leave on Jan. 4, 2022.
- The highly specialized and sensitive nature of the work means that replacement employees are almost impossible to attain quickly.
- “You don’t need to lose 100 people, you don’t need to lose 50 people, you could lose 10 people in a critical area and completely cripple your capability,” said Michael Ford of the Panhandle Rights Advocates for Freedom, a group assisting the Pantex employees.
Paxton Responds To Child Mutilation Question
- Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton released a letter this week responding to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services about the chemical castration of minors and whether it constitutes child abuse. But as Jacob Asmussen reports, Paxton’s office has yet to respond to an official request for an opinion from a sitting member of the Texas
- At issue are gender mutilation operations. Currently in Texas, medical professionals are allowed to cut off children’s healthy body parts as part of gender surgeries or chemically castrate them through sterilizing cross-sex hormones and puberty blocker drugs. Texas drew international attention several years ago with the child abuse case of James Younger, a 9-year-old Dallas-area boy whose mother told him he was a girl and wanted to force him—against his father’s wishes—to take sterilizing drugs and eventually be castrated.
- Over the last several years, Gov. Greg Abbott and the Republican-controlled state legislature—led by Speaker of the House Dade Phelan—have continuously rejected efforts to outlaw the operations.
- In his letter this week, Paxton recapped the recent correspondences, explained why more than three months after a request for an official opinion came from State Rep. Matt Krause (R–Haslet) that the process was not expedited, then directed DFPS to his other letter on the matter from two years ago.
- “To be clear, I trust that DFPS is investigating and taking all appropriate actions against child abuse that may occur through gender reassignment surgery, chemical or surgical castration, puberty blockers, or any other procedure as it relates to children,” wrote Paxton.
Primary Challenges… And Retreats
- State Rep. Justin Holland (R-Heath) officially picked up two Republican primary election challengers on Monday. Jeramy Kitchen has the details.
- Holland has a career rating of an ‘F’ on Texans for Fiscal Responsibility’s Fiscal Responsibility Index, and he had a ‘60’ on the legislative ratings for Texas Right to Life in 2019.
- Both of Holland’s challengers are military veterans. Dennis London, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, and cybersecurity business owner moved from California to Texas in 2018. Scott LaMarca, a U.S. Army veteran, is a construction business owner.
- Leftwing Democrat Matthew Dowd aborted his bid for lieutenant governor yesterday, saying he didn’t want to be an impediment to a racially diverse ticket. Griffin White has the details.
- “We as white male Christians should do what real leadership demands and practice a level of humility which demonstrates strength by stepping back from the center of the room and begin to give up our seats at the table,” said Dowd.
- Dowd literally blamed his political cowardice on his whiteness. Though I see his point: the Democrats already have a white trust-fund liberal in Robert “Beto” O’Rourke at the top of the statewide ticket.
Abilene Voters Seek To Force Abortion Ban
- Momentum is building among the residents of Abilene to declare the city a “sanctuary city for the unborn.” Mark Lee Dickson explains that after more than a year of stalling by the city council, Abilene’s residents are launching a petition drive that will force the issue on the ballot.
- Out of the 42 cities that have passed ordinances outlawing abortion, writes Dickson, all but Lubbock were passed by the city council action.
Total funding for the Texas Military Department, 2021-2022.
“Every step we take towards making the State our Caretaker of our lives, by that much we move toward making the State our Master.”
Because the Texas Association of School Boards has refused to back out of the leftist National School Board Association, and nearly all the dues the Texas group pays to the national group come out of local school property taxes, we asked yesterday if local school board members should be held accountable for not disassociating with TASB. A resounding 97.6 percent clicked “yes.”
Here’s a quick sampling of the emails we received…
- “We have been calling for withdrawal from TASB as well as other similar organizations for years! It's part of the taxpayer funded lobbyist problem that plagues every aspect of our local governments.” – Fran Rhodes
- “We, as Texans, need to do away with the TASB altogether. We need to do away with the Texas Education Agency altogether. Americans need to do away with the NASB and the National Education Agency altogether. Each of these agencies are designed to waste money and other resources that should be going to our children. Local ‘independent’ school boards should be able to report every piece of data that Austin may have a NEED to know, on an Attorney General website with one full-time employee pushing a button to assimilate that data into something the Governor or legislature might need. Enough!” – Machelle Morris
- “No public funds should be used to pay for memberships in associations. If they want to be a member of an association they should use their own personal funds. This issue is similar to using taxpayer’s money to hire lobbyists in Austin!” – William Sargent
- “Why do we continue to allow our tax dollars to go and pay for someone to fight against our best interests?” – Alan Smith
- “Another problem to public education is the long pursuit of always seeking government funding for every aspect of education - like a whore prostituting its entire soul for money. That is your public schools today.” – Nancy Wood
- “Leave TASB? Public education is wickedly wrong for our children and parents should RUN, not walk, to take their children out, today!” – Sheila Domstead
- “Positive changes in education will only be realized when enough parents and grandparents force changes.” – Truman Reid
- “The whole idea of school boards joining together for group-think is wrong. My tax dollars should stay in my school district. If a school board member has a question, ask a local taxpayer.” – Steve Sullivan