Letters to the Editor: August 26 – September 1, 2021
In Response to Ilya Shapiro’s Letter to the Editor from July
I write in response to Ilya Shapiro’s letter dated July 19, 2021 in which he said that his goal is not to wage a culture war.
If that were the case, he would not have run to The Wall Street Journal to try and attract national attention to his local school board campaign and to our community. Instead, he would have done what he finally did here: write a letter to this newspaper. One of his main concerns about the school renaming seems to be that it occurred in spite of split support from the community. I would expect that he would then be guided for all of his decisions based upon what the favored position is within the community if he serves on the school board.
Mr. Shapiro is undoubtedly talented and accomplished, but I think he would be the first to admit that his positions are outside of the mainstream within Falls Church. Even so, we, as a community, should be welcoming of and open to diverse viewpoints and debate when we disagree. For that, Mr. Shapiro should let the community know if he is supportive of the positions taken by the think tank where he is a Vice President and whether he will try and institute policies consistent with those positions (particularly the ones tied to public education) such as:
• Privatization of public schooling (“Public Schools: Make Them Private” dated June 23, 1995);
• Opposition to child labor provisions (“A Case Against Child Labor Prohibitions” dated July 29, 2014);
• Opposition to public sector unions (“Labor Unions Against the Public Interest” dated July 2, 2013); and
• Public schools created individuals more likely to riot on January 6, 2021 (“Updated Rioter Data: Arrestees Disproportionately Attended Public Schools” dated April 13, 2021).
Mr. Shapiro has argued against mask mandates in schools on Twitter (or at least retweeted others who argued that) and is also a signatory to a brief seeking Supreme Court intervention in a case involving a teacher’s union in Chicago. I would certainly be interested to learn if Mr. Shapiro would step away from his advocacy work when it touches on public education while he serves on the school board.
Mr. Shapiro may view this letter as an attack on him. It is not. Mr. Shapiro’s website is very general and my hope (as a parent with a child in the school system) is that Mr. Shapiro (and the other candidates) will fully and specifically explain their positions so the voters can make an educated decision.
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