Home School Advocacy Group Fear Mongers Against Common Core To Fundraise Against Birth Control


The right wing war on education continues.  One of the most active organizations in the right wing’s fight against Common Core is the Home School Legal Defense Association.   On the surface, this does not make sense.  Why should the HSLDA a group for home schooling parents,  care so much about standards that don’t apply to them?

We know why right wing twiddle dumbs like Glenn Beck hate common core. Educated people ask hard questions and expect answers based on facts and reality. Jingoistic hate speech is recognized for what it is. They won’t accept answers like “just believe.”

This presents a problem to authoritarian conservatives who believe that people who ask hard questions are persecuting them and people who think for themselves are a threat to their freedom to promote ignorance and hatred.

Even if GOPT lawmakers don’t know that common core is a state program to establish literacy and numeracy standards for schools within the state, they do know that opposing it keeps the Koch money coming in.  Even if GOPT lawmakers know that common core does not apply to home schools, they will stoke the fears of unknowing parents to avoid the indignity of being Tea Party challenged  Still, this doesn’t explain why an organization that works to defend the rights of homeschooling parents dedicated its time and resources to be one of common core’s most zealous opponents.

What does any of this have to do with the HSLDA? The short answer is it should have nothing to do with an organization that purportedly protects the rights and interests of homeschooling parents.  The reality is the HSLDA is just another front group for the religious right.  Once you understand that the HSLDA is an organization controlled by religious conservatives dedicated to advancing religious conservative ideals, the reasons the HSLDA fights so hard against common core become self-evident.

This is where the political history of its founder, Michael Farris becomes important. Farris joined J. Michael Smith to establish the HSLDA. Before that, Farris earned his credentials as a right wing fear monger while fighting passage of the ERA alongside Phyllis Schlafly and as a state-director for Jerry Falwell’s “Moral Majority.”

The HSLDA is a fundraising mechanism for right wing extremists and its primary objective is to advance the right wing agenda.  Much of HSLDA’s activities have as much to do with advocacy for homeschoolers  as the activities of Teabaggers in Congress have to do with addressing the American people’s needs and concerns.

The HSLDA uses its stated objective of protecting the rights of homeschoolers to advance the indoctrination of future right wing zealots. Much of its efforts and resources are used to advance right wing causes that have nothing to do with homeschooling or education.  The HSLDA is part of the fight against birth control and same sex marriage.  It lobbied against ratification of treaties, including U.N. Conventions on the Rights of the Child, the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, and the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.  The HSLDA also joined with Hobby Lobby and others to give corporations the power over women’s reproductive rights.

In the name of keeping a hold on their membership and with it the assurance that money will continue to flow its way, the HSLDA needs to give its members a reason to stay.  That is where Common Core comes in. The HSLDA exploits its members’ fear of government using the same tactics employed by the NRA, the Tea Party and any other extreme right wing organization.  Instead of saying the Federal government is coming after their guns, the HSLDA tells parents the Federal Government is coming after their hard fought freedom to homeschool. The organization’s website contains a fear-mongering article called “Will the Common Core impact homeschools and private schools.”  Let’s just say the article is about as factual as the content on any other right wing website.  The HSLDA relies on three main arguments to persuade its members the Federal government is coming after homeschooling and homeschoolers.

First, it claims, “Perhaps the most immediate threat to homeschool and private school students is the expansion of statewide longitudinal databases.”  The article goes on to exploit the already fostered fears about the Federal government invading privacy and then it goes for the jugular.

It is utterly impossible to believe that these databases will not be mined and misused to serve the ulterior purposes of a centralized government intent on growing its own power.

The article goes on to instill the fear that common core threatens children’s post-secondary educational opportunities. It postulates that standardized tests will be aligned with Common Core. Children whose parents don’t use the Common Core curricula will do poorly on standardized tests and therefore will not get into college. Moreover, the article claims the government is pressuring colleges to alter their tests in conformity with common core curriculum.

Then the article resorts to the homeschool version of Animal Farm tactics.  Children who take those examinations might “soon encounter progressive ideologies including social engineering and alternative life styles.”

If the parents knew that, in reality, states establish the common core standards for their state, they would not have a reason to pay the HSLDA a peace of mind fee to fend off the big bad Federal government.  In the end, that is why the GOPT is anti-education. Education enables people to think critically, ask questions and fact check. An educated population would recognize that the GOPT and its satellite groups serve the usual puppet masters to the detriment of everyone else in America.

However, the parents who joined this organization are paying the HSLDA not only to act against their own interests, but also the interests of their children.

In other words, the HSLDA is just another right wing front group that sells empty promises they have no intention of keeping in exchange for money to advance ideas and policies that harms its members and their members’ children.

Image: Zerobs




8 Replies to “Home School Advocacy Group Fear Mongers Against Common Core To Fundraise Against Birth Control”

  1. It just amazes me that for some people “an alternative lifestyle” equals “a homosexual based lifestyle.” A single parent family is in an alternative lifestyle. A child living and growing up with grandparents is in an alternative lifestyle. Neither one of those scenarios include a homosexual component. These fundamental extremists are just enthralled, it seems, with homosexuality.

  2. As an engineering educator for 29 years, it is my experience that a strong background in high-school calculus is one of the best preparations to succeed in the rigorous college-level math and science courses required to obtain a bachelors-of-science degree in engineering.
    Unfortunately, the Common-Core math standards (CCSS-M) discourage instruction in calculus at the high-school level. For example, Trevor Packer of the College Board recommends that school administrators who are “worried about AP Calculus and fidelity to the Common Core” teach “AP Statistics and AP Computer Science,” instead of high-school calculus1.
    The high-stakes math testing associated with the CCSS-M will likely result a teach-only-to-the-test paradigm in many of Ohio’s high-school math programs. Since calculus will not be included in CCSS-driven math tests, it is likely that high-school calculus will be offered.

  3. Another bunch or worthless fundie christians trying to force people to live under their laws. Say no to christian sharia laws.

    What will women do if they wake up one day to find they can no longer buy birth control? What will Pharma do? Who is stronger?

  4. “Alternative” lifestyles abounded after World War II, when brave widows and aunties raised the children of men dead in war…and overseas, they were joined by brave widowers and uncles who raised the children of women– nurses, observers, fire-watchers, ambulance drivers, and just plain luckless civilians– killed in the bombing. Then, good Christians called it courageous and patriotic. Why are they cursing it now?

  5. My son took high school calculus back in the 90’s. His teacher was also an AP grader, and she had the students group and teach themselves. It was not a great educational experience. He got a 3 on the AP test, which would have gotten him out of his 1st semester calc at Michigan, but he chose to retake Calc 1 to see how it was taught at UM. He never regretted that, and is a successful chemical engineer now in Texas. His dad did not have calculus at our small high school, and did fine at college and after…he’s about to retire after 38 years at one company.
    The threat to education in my MI town is not common core, but the International Baccalaureate program they are now forcing into the elementary schools. At the HS level, they couldn’t get enough kids to take the IB sciences, so they combined them with the AP classes, and fewer kids are now taking AP tests, thus earning less college credit. It’s sad.

  6. My state school superintendent, John Barge (R)turned on these groups over CC last week, saying that none of them are seeking to understand CC and their opposition to it is based on only their desire to raise funds for their organizations. After signing a bill into law in LA and enthusiastically supporting CC in 2012, Jindal filed a lawsuit against the Obama Adm. today, claiming that the it “coerced” LA into signing onto to CC. He’s lying. In 2012 he told LA’s citizens that the program is voluntary when he signed on to compete for Race to the Top funding. Even his own state school supt opposes him and so do most of the state’s lawmakers. I guess after a court ruled against him on CC last week and his support to reverse the program is weak, he decided to blame his inability to kill CC on the president. A NOLA writer called him out today by asking whether he’s a liar or was duped. The writer says he’s lying and is using the lawsuit as a campaign tool to run for POTUS in 2016.

  7. When I started asking logical, but respectful, questions about home school curricula on Twitter, I was blocked. Strange how an education group is afraid of an exchange of information…

  8. Not Even Common Core-tesy

    Louisiana GOP governor and perennial punchline Bobby Jindal has decided that the state’s failing educational standards have to be Obama’s fault, so he’s suing the federal government.

    Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal filed a federal lawsuit Wednesday accusing the U.S. Department of Education of illegally coercing states to adopt the Common Core academic standards by requiring states that want to compete for federal grants to embrace the national standards.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.