Politics has driven a huge wedge in the state of public education, and after breaking news was released earlier today, the issue might only get worse. In the ongoing case involving the government, FBI, and parents in public schools, newly leaked information goes against sworn-in claims made by a United States attorney general earlier this year. If proven true, it could be detrimental to the state of the democracy, as it claims the FBI underwent counterterrorism concepts against parents for their politicized beliefs spoken upon at school board meetings throughout the nation.
Across social media and major news websites, information regarding the leaked letters sent by Republican Reps. Jim Jordan and Mike Johnson allege they have evidence that the FBI targeted parents opposed to COVID mandates and policies in school, among other politically driven debates, despite previous claims it wasn’t happening. Within the letters, the lawmakers say the information that they have attained from unnamed whistleblowers goes against testimonies that Attorney General Merric B Garland swore under oath earlier this year, as he said the FBI was not imposing counterterrorism measures on parents. According to their leaked advisor, they say the FBI counterterrorism bureau has been placing “threat tags” that track parents the government considers to be “unruly or unsafe.” Some of the examples given allege that the FBI investigated a mother who threatened school board members with a message saying “we are coming for you.”
To understand what is being accused of occurring between the FBI and parents, it is important to understand how the situation started. Earlier this school year, USA Today reported that Garland had issued a memorandum on October 4th. Within the written message, Garland called on the FBI to address the growing concern by many various organizations of disorderly, rowdy parents who had been said to be threatening and taunting violence against school officials, teachers, and staff. This came to fruition after many groups, like the National School Boards Association (NSBA), called on the Biden Administration to bring attention to the troubling situation.
When news broke about the Attorney General’s memorandum, the same Republican Reps. questioned the official’s issuance to the FBI regarding school parents. This was back in November of 2021, and the lawmakers initially claimed the same thing, saying that the FBI was targeting parents opposed to school policies. This letter came with conversions attached involving FBI personnel, with evidence citing that the bureau would investigate and assess threats directed against school officials and staff. However, there was no proof in the leaked conversations that the FBI was investigating parents solely based on their disapproval of school policies like the letter claimed.
The big difference in these assertions is that many right-wing politicians and news outlets are claiming the Biden Administration and the FBI are probing parents that disagree with school mandates and procedures with counterterrorism tactics and comparing them to national terrorists. On the other side of the spectrum, critics are pointing out that the FBI isn’t simply investigating anyone they choose to, but only those that fall under the category as threatful to the safety of others’ well-being and life. But still, many feel these claims are taking things too far, saying that parents aren’t necessarily threatening the lives of these elected officials, but instead merely growing heated over something as dear to them as the well-being of their children in schools.
Supporters and rivals of the alleged leaked information are strictly taking sides, and that force is further driving the divide in public education. Many parents claim schools are indoctrinating young students on sexual and political preferences, but others claim it is a ploy ployed by officials to further gain support in political campaigns. Unfortunately, no matter what side of the spectrum people fall under, the youth of America’s nation will likely be caught up in the battle for years to come.