Live from Virginia Thursday morning on The John Fredericks Show – weekdays on WNTW AM 820/ FM 92.7 – Richmond, WJFN FM 100.5 – Central Virginia, WMPH AM 1010 / FM 100.1 / FM 96.9 (7-9 PM) Hampton Roads, WBRG AM 1050 / FM 105.1 – Lynchburg/Roanoke and Weekdays 6-10 am and 24/7 Stream – host Fredericks welcomed Speech First President Nicole Neily to the program.
Fredericks: Joining us now is Speech First President Nicole Neily. Last week it was reported and we also did a story on it in The Virginia Star. Go to The Virginia Star that Virginia’s Loudoun County Public Schools District Board is going to be voting on whether or not to adopt the speech code that’s going to prohibit teachers or any school employee from criticizing anything they do outside of the campus. Outside the campus. So basically here’s what it means. If you’re a teacher in Loudoun County and you go to a bar and you’re talking at a bar with your friend and you’ve you’re got a trump button on and you’re talking about the fact that you like Trump and you don’t like the democrats.
Guess what they can do? Fire you! because now Loudoun County says well that’s going to be offensive. That’s offensive speech. So if you’re not a left-wing, Pro-socialist, monitor speech part of the cancel culture, then you can get fired for having a beer with a friend and get ratted out because you happen to be a Republican. Do you think I’m making this up? We did a whole story on it in The Virginia Star and we’re going to keep covering that. Go to thevirginiastar.com. Joining us now, Speech First President Nicole Neily. Nicole, what is going on here?
Neily: Yeah, you know what? Thanks to backlash from people like you, the school board has actually tabled it. They’re reviewing it right now because they were supposed to vote on it on October 12 but it’s certainly it’s not out of the woods yet. So I appreciate you keeping up the pressure and just to highlight what a horribly offensive and unconstitutional policy this is.
Fredericks: We did a major story on it in The Virginia Star. We headlined it and it got tremendous play. I got more downloads on that than anything we’ve done recently. But the fact that this would even be drawn up, I mean what what what is going on? You have a school system that is funded by your tax dollars, your property taxes telling teachers what they can say when they’re on their own time. Are you kidding me?
Neily: Right. Yeah, and it was definitely it was buried in the fine print. It was just a revision of their professional conduct policy. But it’s yeah it banned discriminatory conducts comments that are motivated in whole or in part by a bias against an individual’s religion. And it bans any comments that are not in alignment with the school’s commitment to action-oriented equity practices. So as you said I mean it could be somebody like a religious teacher talking about you know their faith in their belief in marriage between a man and a woman in the privacy of their own home. I mean things like that would fall afoul of this policy. Which is just appalling.
Fredericks: Well then they would get ratted out. For instance, I could be at a party and I could say you know what I don’t like Black Lives Matter. I went on their website and guess what I found? They’re a pro-communist, pro-Marxist organization that hates fathers and wants to dissolve the family unit. And they don’t want men in the household. And then somebody can rat me out and I can get fired.
Neily: Yes absolutely. And you know what I think? I don’t know if the school district really thought this through but the first amendment does not allow for blanket bans on politically incorrect or frankly even like racist or offensive speech outside the workplace. And you know it’s the nice thing about living in Virginia is we also have religious freedom laws. And punishing expression this way I think could run afoul of those laws. So I’m really glad that the school district has tabled it. But I think we’re not out of the woods yet because this is just one of you know, Loudoun is not going to be the only one. I’m sure there will be other school districts that will try to pull similar shenanigans in the future.
Fredericks: Listen, Nicole, the fact that they attempted to sneak this in is just mind-boggling. And you have to ask yourself if they did it well what’s next? Fairfax? Arlington? Falls Church? I mean it’s going to be everywhere. And this is going to be the norm. You might have like fought this back beating it back one time. But it’s going to keep popping up because there is now a movement and a culture in the United States that is absolutely determined to ban and monitor what people are saying.
And that’s what a Marxist state does. They monitor just like in China with the CCP you have a social score. And so if the social score is not above a certain amount then it can be harmed by criticizing the government or saying something that they don’t feel is politically correct. And you can’t buy a house. Your children can’t go to college. You can’t buy a car. You can’t get on a bus. I mean is this where we’re headed, Nicole?
Neily: I worry that we are. I usually work on college campus issues and one thing that we’ve seen over the years is programs called “bias response teams” spring up around the country. And these are programs where it’s on there’s a university website but you’re encouraged to tattletale on your fellow classmates for speech or for saying something that might be offensive or biased or bigoted. You can do it anonymously. And you know what the kind of speech that often then is getting reported it’s political speech.
And it’s religious speech. And when you look at the full reports they’re usually accompanied by a call for expelling this person, punish this person. I mean students are really they’re out for blood based on political viewpoints which is a really scary thing. So it reminds me of that phrase, “the price of liberty is eternal vigilance.” I think you’re absolutely right. This is the kind of thing that people around the state and frankly around the country need to keep an eye on because it is coming.
Fredericks: How do we fight back Nicole?
Neily: I think you know it’s interesting that this was buried in the fine print of a teacher professional conduct code. And so I think some of this is just be engaged. You know this is it’s not enough just to pay attention to what’s going on in Congress and in the White House. It’s you know to pay attention to your local school board meetings. Pay attention to what your mayor’s up to because these kinds of codes, they’re going after workplaces. They’re going after schools. It’s trying to do that group thing because you know what they don’t have to bust everybody. They just have to bust a few people and then it chills everybody else. And it makes everybody else fearful. So people just stop talking about these issues that they believe passionately about.
Fredericks: See you just nailed it. They don’t have to bust everybody just a few. Just a few rat outs. And you know this is what the KGB did. You know neighborhoods would rat out a neighbor. You know in the old Soviet Union had a statue of a child that ratted his parents out. His parents were then arrested and executed. And the child was raised by the state.
And they have a statue of that as the example of what you’re looking for. So you rat out your parents and they get executed then you were to stay at home and then you’re lionized. I mean but that’s exactly it. They want people to rat you out so now you are ratted out and then you get fired. And that happens two or three times and then people become afraid. Then they start managing what you’re saying. That is exactly what is going to happen. You exactly nailed it, Nicole.
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