Republican Assault Garland on Justice Department Schools Memo

Written by admin

Republican Assault Garland on Justice Department Schools Memo

Republicans rebuked Attorney General Merrick Garland on Wednesday over the Justice Department’s initiatives to tackle threats of violence and harassment directed at school administrators, teachers and school board members, incidents that have escalated as education is a culture war battleground. has become.

Republican criticism on the Senate Judiciary Committee came a week after Mr Garland faced similar scathing questions from Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee.

Republicans have sought to turn the Justice Department’s effort into an issue they hope to masquerade as an attack on parental rights, expressing their concerns over issues such as the mandate and the teaching of race-related topics. that would resonate with voters.

There was a memo on the issue that Mr Garland issued on October 4, instructing the FBI and the offices of the 94 US attorneys to meet with local law enforcement agencies in early November to discuss the matter. Learn how to deal with threats and open “dedicated lines of communication”. Threat reporting, assessment and response.”

Mr Garland said in his memo that there was a “disturbing spike” in harassment, intimidation and threats against public school staff and board members.

“While enthusiastic debate about policy matters is protected under our Constitution, this protection does not extend to threats of violence or attempts to intimidate individuals based on their views,” Mr. Garland wrote.

Mr. Garland has also issued memoranda announcing initiatives to address the harassment of election workers as well as the rise in hate crimes against Asians.

He clarified during his testimony that the instruction to his schools was only to address violence and threats of violence. And he said several times that the Supreme Court and the First Amendment prevent the department from cracking down on free speech even when it gets very hot.

See also  opinion | Republicans have gone too far in the region hardest hit by Covid

In the memo, Mr Garland did not detail any specific threats of violence or offer reasons for the increase in harassment and threats.

But news accounts over the past year have given detailed physical fights, arrests, allegations of disorderly conduct and threats against board members, teachers and administrators, stemming from debates on topics such as masked mandates, gender issues and curriculum. The ones that deals with racism.

But several Republicans on the Judiciary Committee, including Senator Thom Tillis of North Carolina, said a memo instructing the FBI to look into harassment and threats could have a chilling effect on parents who want to hear complaints. Huh.

“The full force of the FBI is now something that parents have to think about before going to a school board meeting to express their concerns and they get frustrated,” Mr Tillis said. He asked Mr Garland to consider rescinding or revising the memo.

The Republican also said Mr Garland had politicized the Justice Department by issuing the memo shortly after public school leaders asked President Biden to address safety issues in schools.

Republican Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas said Mr Garland’s memo came just days after the heads of the National School Boards Association wrote a letter to Biden that detailed examples of disruption and threats to school board meetings. He suggested that the timing raised the question of whether the Justice Department memo had been directed by the White House.

Mr Garland denied being directed by the White House.

“When we get reports of violence and threats of violence, we need to act very fast,” Mr Garland told Mr Cotton. “I would have hated it, for receiving this letter and then there was an act of violence in the interim.”

See also  Infiltro en Un ula de Primeria from La Variant Delta. Assi Susidio

He said he issued the memo in the wake of news reports about threats and violence against school staff and boards, and not just a letter from the National School Boards Association.

After some state members withdrew from the association, citing incendiary language in the letter—including comparisons between protesting parents and “domestic terrorism”—the National School Boards Association apologized to its members.

Republicans also asked Mr. Garland for details about the news release announcing the Justice Department’s initiative. Part of the effort could be the creation of a task force that includes the National Security Division, a component of the department that focuses on counter-terrorism efforts, the release said.

Mr Garland did not say whether the task force would be created or why it might include a National Security Division. While he outlined a number of criminal charges that could have been brought about hypothetically in the types of cases reported in the news, none of them took into account the kind of work the department usually handles. .

Some Republicans said they had received information that some members of the FBI were unhappy with the directive, but Mr. Garland said no one inside the department had complained to him about it.

#Republican #Assault #Garland #Justice #Department #Schools #Memo

About the author


Leave a Comment

%d bloggers like this: