Fox News Jen Psaki school board meetings

Fox News reporter Peter Doocy questioned White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on disruptive school board meetings.

School board meetings have become the new front line in America's culture wars. Over the past few months, there have been countless viral videos of angry parents spouting off on school board podiums about a whole host of issues.

There have been aggressive debates over mask mandates, the teaching of critical race theory and transgender equality.

School board meeting disruptions have become such a regular part of American life they were lampooned last weekend on "Saturday Night Live."



However, threats to school boards are a serious issue and the Biden Administration should get ahead of the problem by taking a strong stance against those who threaten our educators. Recently, school board officials across the country have been threatened with violence, including one incident where a protester brandished a flagpole against a school board official.

The National School Boards Association sent a letter to the Biden Administration stating that, "These heinous actions could be the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes."

The threats have prompted U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland to address the issue. In response, Garland directed federal authorities to meet with local law enforcement over the next month to discuss strategies for addressing the increase in "harassment, intimidation and threats of violence against school board members, teachers and workers" in public schools across the country.

Just about every American would agree that we should work to protect school board members from threats of violence. However, Fox News reporter Peter Doocy used Garland's decision to crack down on violent threats as a way to rile up conservatives.

Jen Psaki vs. Peter Doocy on concerned parents www.youtube.com

He completely mischaracterized Garland's directive in a question he asked White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on Wednesday.

"Does the administration agree that parents upset about their kids' curriculums could be considered domestic terrorists?" he asked.

"Let me unravel this a little bit," Psaki answered, saying that Garland is "correct" to say that threats of violence against public servants "run counter to our nation's core values."

"Regardless of the reasoning," she said, "threats and violence against public servants is illegal."

Doocy then took things in an even more convoluted direction by claiming that Joe Biden was being hypocritical on the issue of protests.

"Something you said on Monday after some protesters were hounding Kyrsten Sinema into a restroom," Doocy said, "You said, 'The president stands for the fundamental right of people to protest, to object, [and] to criticize.' So does the president support the fundamental rights of these parents to protest at school board meetings?"

"Of course," Psaki said. Then, she took a moment to explain the difference between "violence" and "nonviolence" to Doocy.

"But he doesn't stand for the fundamental right – I assume you don't either – for people to take violent action against public servants. And that's what the threats are about. And so, no, he doesn't stand for that," she said firmly. "No one should."

When reporters like Doocy make bad faith arguments over issues as important as threats of violence to America's educators, he puts them at risk by muddying the waters around the issue. If his logic finds its way to Fox News and people believe the Biden Administration wants to unleash the FBI on parents, he risks inspiring even more people to consider violent action on their local educators.

Photo by Louis Hansel on Unsplash
True

This story was originally shared on Capital One.

Inside the walls of her kitchen at her childhood home in Guatemala, Evelyn Klohr, the founder of a Washington, D.C.-area bakery called Kakeshionista, was taught a lesson that remains central to her business operations today.

"Baking cakes gave me the confidence to believe in my own brand and now I put my heart into giving my customers something they'll enjoy eating," Klohr said.

While driven to launch her own baking business, pursuing a dream in the culinary arts was economically challenging for Klohr. In the United States, culinary schools can open doors to future careers, but the cost of entry can be upwards of $36,000 a year.

Through a friend, Klohr learned about La Cocina VA, a nonprofit dedicated to providing job training and entrepreneurship development services at a training facility in the Washington, D.C-area.

La Cocina VA's, which translates to "the kitchen" in Spanish, offers its Bilingual Culinary Training program to prepare low-and moderate-income individuals from diverse backgrounds to launch careers in the food industry.

That program gave Klohr the ability to fully immerse herself in the baking industry within a professional kitchen facility and receive training in an array of subjects including culinary skills, food safety, career development and English language classes.

Keep Reading Show less

This article originally appeared on 04.13.18


Teens have a knack for coming up with clever ways to rage against the system.

When I was in high school, the most notorious urban legend whispered about in hallways and at parties went like this: A teacher told his class that they were allowed to put "anything" on a notecard to assist them during a science test. Supposedly, one of his students arrived on test day with a grown adult at his side — a college chemistry major, who proceeded to stand on the notecard and give him answers. The teacher was apparently so impressed by the student's cunning that he gave him a high score, then canceled class for the rest of the week because he was in such a good mood.

Of course, I didn't know anyone who'd ever actually try such a thing. Why ruin a good story with reality — that pulling this kind of trick would probably earn you detention?

Keep Reading Show less