I’ve met Stephanie Hilferty. She’s a nice lady. I don’t really want to say anything bad about her. But she doesn’t leave me much choice after what she did on CNN last weekend.
It’s almost impossible to get a politician to refrain from going on cable news, but whoever is handling Hilferty really needs to try. This was painful, and it paints her as somebody who knows not a bit more than ordinary citizens about public policy.
And throwing Garofalo under the bus like she did at a time when he’s clearly being exploited by Democrats in a power play aimed at preserving and expanding the teaching of Critical Race Theory (CRT) in Louisiana’s schools.
There is a dynamic here that we haven’t covered in the multiple posts we’ve done on Garofalo’s CRT bill, but it’s important. Which is this – last year President Trump scrubbed CRT out of federal employee training and other policy, and began pushing the need for patriotic education in American schools.
But the Biden administration has reversed that completely. In fact, Biden is holding billions of dollars in funding for grants to local school districts to push CRT, essentially bribing local school boards to sanction the teaching that America as founded is an evil, racist country and that “whiteness” is problematic, that white schoolkids are racist from birth because they benefit from a racist system in this country and that People Of Color can’t get a fair shake in this country.
That is what Critical Race Theory teaches. It’s not some educational agenda which teaches racism is bad and there was no good part to slavery, which is how CNN attempted to sell it with Hilferty’s help. One of the chief modern exponents of CRT is a crank author and academic named Ibram X. Kendi, and he actually said “The only remedy to racist discrimination is antiracist discrimination. The only remedy to past discrimination is present discrimination. The only remedy to present discrimination is future discrimination.”
Another famous Kendi quote: “[T]here is no in-between safe space of ‘not racist.’” Meaning you’re either a radical woke socialist or you’re part of the problem. If you’re getting a Pol Pot/Che Guevara vibe from this you are not wrong in having it.
This is what the feds want to impose on local school districts across the country. We aren’t exaggerating. Examples are popping up all over the country already – with proponents of CRT saying things like they want to create “white traitors” in the schools.
And Garofalo’s bill would make teaching this poison as official school doctrine illegal in Louisiana, which would eliminate the state’s ability to pull in that federal grant money.
That’s why you’re getting so much opposition to this. Louisiana’s education establishment is so greedy and money-grubbing that they would slavishly chase federal grant money for human sacrifice on the school playgrounds if it was on offer, and CRT is the next best thing to that. So Garofalo has to be destroyed.
Hilferty doesn’t know anything about any of this. She just wants all the people back in New Orleans to know she’s Totally Not Racist, Y’all.
But she’s doing a great deal of damage.
What’s incredible is how House Speaker Clay Schexnayder allowed her to treat one of his committee chairmen so shabbily. But Schexnayder has treated Garofalo equally poorly by not standing behind him when Ted James and then John Bel Edwards shamelessly called for his removal when he had done nothing wrong other than bring a bill blocking full cultural Marxist indoctrination in Louisiana’s schools.
Support seems to be mobilizing behind Garofalo. The Louisiana Federation of Republican Women has apparently begun a phone campaign calling Schexnayder’s office demanding Garofalo be left in place as House Education chairman, and the House GOP delegation is rumored to be preparing a resolution standing behind him this week.
But Schexnayder has demanded Garofalo pull the bill, and he’s refused so far, and the word over the weekend was that Schexnayder was likely to remove him from that chairmanship.
If it happens Clay Schexnayder will officially become the worst House Speaker Louisiana has ever had and his own removal will have to be the first priority for Louisiana’s conservative movement and the LAGOP. The precedent it would set is so horrid as to make it impossible for any Republican to effectively serve in the Louisiana legislature.
We said this last week – the obvious solution for Schexnayder would be to go entirely the other way – to reaffirm Garofalo as the chairman of House Education, to pressure Republicans on that committee – namely, Hilferty and fellow squishy Republican Barbara Frieberg – to vote the bill out onto the House floor where it easily has enough votes for passage, and to yank James out of his chairmanship of the House Criminal Justice Committee as punishment for causing this debacle in the first place.
Were Schexnayder to do that he would no doubt consolidate support from the House GOP delegation and there would be no further leverage the Legislative Black Caucus might have over him arising from his becoming Speaker with their votes.
Why this hasn’t happened is far beyond us. It makes no sense. The only reasonable explanations for the current direction of things all point to under-the-table shenanigans most people would see as beyond the pale of proper leadership.
It’s an unnecessary crisis, one Schexnayder should have shut down. With Hilferty poisoning the GOP brand on CNN over the weekend, it’s getting worse and needs to be fixed now.