Mask mandates and other authoritarian directives from schools, school boards, and unions are becoming increasing unpopular, and more Americans are balking at the orders. Parents are frustrated and angry at mandates that are hurting their children.
At a recent school board meeting in Illinois, a Bosnian immigrant and father attempted to share his experience in an authoritarian country, Daily Wire reports. His admonition was in response to a district decision to keep enforcing mask requirements for school children in spite of a judge’s temporary stay on the order.
The parent from Bosnia shared his experience fleeing genocide in his native country, seeking safety in the United States. He explained how the situation deteriorated in his country. It began with restricting freedom of speech, confiscating guns, and other authoritarian acts, Daily Wire reports.
“It was the simple small things, because you couldn’t walk down the street and tell your neighbor how you really felt, because your neighbor might rat out on you,” the father told Daily Wire. “And that’s where we’re at right now, we’re starting to see that.”
He told Daily Wire reporter Virginia Kruta he remembers the way his family was treated by the Serbs. “I was very young, but I have vivid memories of the Serbs coming in and beating my parents, beating my mother, doing many other things to many other women.”
Although school board members left the room, the audience of parents applauded his speech. “There is no land of opportunity like there is here,” he said.
A woman from the former Soviet Union shared her story with Heartland Daily News. Preferring to not use her real name, she will be referred to as Eva. She attended school in the former Soviet Union and now has children in public school in the United States.
“School in the Soviet Union is very different, Eva said. “Everyone is taking the same classes. Even those who struggle or don’t do well. They get no tutor, no help, nothing at all. We are all supposed to be the same. We are all supposed to be equal. We were equally rewarded.”
There was no freedom to choose electives as American students do in high school. “The curriculum is created for them (students) and there is no discussion,” Eva said. “It is a pre-set curriculum, and we are told what to take. It is a set schedule, so you are told what classes and when you take those classes. It is top-down communication in a communist country. We don’t question it.”
Eva sees a similar situation evolving in the American education system. Most concerning is that her daughter is being taught the benefits of socialism in her American public school. She tries to share her lived reality and experience of an authoritarian system, but her daughter tells her, “It’s not that bad,” refusing to believe the first-hand account of her parents who grew up under totalitarian rule.
“It’s one of our biggest challenges,” Eva said. “We went through it. We lived there. In theory maybe it sounds good, but in practice, it is not. It’s such a struggle for us to see her learn that way.”
Eva says it’s not just what teachers teach, but how they teach it. “The brainwashing starts with the teacher. The way they teach and the way they talk has a big influence. They don’t always use the terms, but the ideas.”
In the former Soviet Union, they also started very young with political teaching. “We had classes on Leninism and Marxism. We had to read Lenin. I remember it didn’t make sense, but you just memorized it. I had to try to understand it because I was required to take these classes. This was it, and no alternative view is allowed to be expressed.”
Chinese-American parents are also concerned about the direction of the American school system, Bacon’s Rebellion reports.
“After surviving the Cultural Revolution, they uniquely recognize the dangers of an ideology like critical race theory, the race-based philosophy that dismantles core principles in our society, such as the idea of the American Dream, replacing the idea of equality with the disingenuous notion of ‘equity,’ and punishing Asian-American children for their advanced academics,” writes Asra Nomani for Bacon’s Rebellion.
The Chinese American Citizens Alliance Greater New York sent a letter last year denouncing critical race theory. The letter warns about CRT’s infiltration into the American curriculum.
“CRT appears in our workplaces under the cover of implicit bias/sensitivity training,” the letter states. “It infiltrates our schools pretending to be culturally/ethnically responsive pedagogy, with curricula such as the New York Times’ 1619 Project and Seattle’s ethnomathematics. Hate groups, with allies in politics, the press and education, pass CRT off as anti-racism and diversity, equity, and inclusion, but CRT is exactly the opposite. From its very roots, CRT is racist, repressive, discriminatory, and divisive.”
The parent from Bosnia cautioned American parents from allowing the schools to continue to dictate mandate, increasing the level of authoritarianism.
“This is becoming way too political and way too tyrannical” the Bosnian told Daily Wire. “There’s absolutely no reason for this. None. We all want to be civil, and we all want to do this the right way, but I’m telling you, if you do not stop complying, you will lose everything that you have.”