It’s not uncommon to hear discussion of “culture wars”—the clash between traditional morality and liberal positions related to public policy issues like abortion, same-sex marriage, and even home schooling and parental rights.
These policy discussions are played out during campaigns when citizens choose legislative, executive, and judicial officials at the ballot box. THSC has been involved in this process since the 1980s, when some of these elected officials tried with some success to limit the right of parents to teach their children at home. During that time, it became crystal clear that to secure our rights as parents to make decisions for our children’s education and upbringing without the interference of government, we would have to work to elect officials who agreed with that premise.Securing our rights means electing officials that believe in our rights. #KeepTXStrong #KeepTXFamiliesFree Click To Tweet
In the 1980s, home schooling was so unfamiliar to most people that if a candidate said he supported the right of parents to choose home schooling, we were elated and very supportive of that candidate.
Times, however, have changed. Home schooling is now widely accepted, and so the legislative agenda that we support today is not merely defensive in opposing home school regulations, but also offensive in terms of protecting parental rights and giving home schoolers more freedoms and choices.We need not just defensive, but also offensive voting. #KeepTXStrong #KeepTXFamiliesFree #Vote2016 Click To Tweet
As a result, we have decided to support challengers to some officials whom we have endorsed in the past—both legislative and judicial candidates. Our reasoning is very simple: THSC’s support is not personal or based on friendship, rather it is based on the elected official’s record of supporting and defending parental rights and home schooling. Mere rhetoric is not sufficient. Read two of our recent blog posts, Why Doesn’t THSC Endorse Friends and Tim Lambert Sets the Record Straight to learn more.
THSC had great success in the statewide and legislative races, but what is not as apparent is the relative success of some of the races in which our endorsed candidates did not win. It has been my experience that an incumbent who is challenged and survives after a hard-fought campaign is more likely to be responsive to us in the future. Others will see the handwriting on the wall and decide to retire rather than go through another tight race. I would consider those gains as well.
In addition to these campaigns, THSC has begun to work with local committees who interview candidates for us, including local and judicial candidates. This process enables us to educate candidates about parental rights and home schooling and to have an impact in local judicial races, which is critical in regards to CPS and custody cases in which home schooling is an element. People are becoming aware of our presence and recognizing that we are effective.
In one local race, THSC supported a candidate running against a judge whom we had supported four years earlier, but who had not lived up to his rhetoric. He was defeated by the challenger we supported, and as a result, we not only have a new judge, but other judges are now aware that we are serious about backing judges who understand and support the fundamental right of parents to direct the care, control, and upbringing of their children.
While I understand that politics is sometimes (maybe often) ugly and difficult, this primary was another success for parental rights and home schooling.
I hope you will participate in the primary runoff on May 24 and help us elect even more advocates of parental rights. If you would like be kept informed on any endorsements, election, or political news, please sign up for emailed updates.
To paraphrase Winston Churchill, we will never, never, never give up! Thank you for helping us Keep Texas Families Free!