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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Drew Angerer/Getty Images

(LifeSiteNews) — The war between American parents and progressive politicians with an agenda of indoctrination is heating up with the passage of the Parental Bill of Rights Act through the U.S. Congress on March 24 by a margin of 213-208.  

Covered by much of the mainstream media as another GOP foray into the culture war, the bill is actually an anodyne, common-sense piece of legislation that merely seeks to ensure that parents are involved in the education of their children.

The Parental Rights Act would require public school districts to be transparent, publicly posting details of curriculum being taught to students as well as supplying lists of books and other materials made available in student libraries. 

In addition, the bill would make it mandatory for school boards to receive parental feedback as well as offer a minimum of two in-person parent-teacher meetings per year. The Parental Bill of Rights Act avoids specifics, meaning that if a majority of parents are in favor of the sorts of LGBT books and other lessons that have become the subject of protests across the U.S., they would be entitled to contribute that feedback. 

According to House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, the Parental Bill of Rights “has five pillars to ensure parents have the right to have a voice in their kids’ education: Right to know what’s being taught in schools and to see reading material; Right to be heard; Right to see school budget and spending; Right to protect their child’s privacy; [and] Right to be updated on any violent activity at school.” 

All of this, of course, should be uncontroversial. This bill is not creating new parental rights so much as recognizing existing rights that have, over the past decade, been increasingly ignored or trampled.

Horrified parents have discovered that their children have been “socially transitioned” by school staff across the country; official policy at many state schools is to deliberately hide key information (such as curriculum, students choosing a new gender identity, and reading materials) from parents. The Parental Bill of Rights is a reminder to activist school boards and educators that they are not the parents and that their authority is not primary.  

Thus, the reaction of progressive politicians to this bill has been, as usual, revealing.

Congresswoman Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, a member of the far-left group of Democratic politicians dubbed “The Squad,” gave an impassioned and clueless speech calling on the GOP to “keep the culture wars out of classrooms,” ignoring the fact that the Parental Bill of Rights merely gives parents the right to keep culture wars out of classrooms. “When we talk about progressive values, I can say what my progressive value is,” she declaimed. “And that is freedom over fascism! Thank you very much.” 

It is worth breaking that down. AOC does not seem to understand that her version of “progressive values” — which includes the radical LGBT agenda — is precisely what many parents object to, and precisely why they want to have some say over what their children are being taught. She also does not seem to grasp the fact that it is freedom to give parents some say over what is being taught in state schools; it is far closer to fascism to insist that the state has the right to teach state dogmas to children against the will of their parents. 

AOC wants her values to be taught to other people’s children, and she wants to use government power to do it. 

It is no surprise that Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez calls parental rights “fascism” — she, after all, identifies as a democratic socialist. It is an old socialist trick to refer to those who disagree with them as “fascists,” as it delegitimizes ideological opponents without having to engage with their arguments. In this case, AOC and the hundreds of other Democrats who agree with her must explain why state employees should be shielded from parental oversight and why they believe that the government takes precedence over the family. I suspect that their honest replies to that would sound remarkably similar to fascism.  

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Jonathon Van Maren is a public speaker, writer, and pro-life activist. His commentary has been translated into more than eight languages and published widely online as well as print newspapers such as the Jewish Independent, the National Post, the Hamilton Spectator and others. He has received an award for combating anti-Semitism in print from the Jewish organization B’nai Brith. His commentary has been featured on CTV Primetime, Global News, EWTN, and the CBC as well as dozens of radio stations and news outlets in Canada and the United States.

He speaks on a wide variety of cultural topics across North America at universities, high schools, churches, and other functions. Some of these topics include abortion, pornography, the Sexual Revolution, and euthanasia. Jonathon holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in history from Simon Fraser University, and is the communications director for the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform.

Jonathon’s first book, The Culture War, was released in 2016.