July 31, 2018

Why Not Let the Government Raise Your Child?

Cynthia Dunbar, a Republican National Committeewoman for Virginia and former Texas State Board of Education member, recently authored a resolution that was adopted by the Republican National Committee supporting the God-given right of parents to make decisions for their children.

It specifically addresses public schools that make it very difficult for families to opt out of sexual education programs that they find objectionable for their children.

Pro-family groups have long supported the right of parents to make these decisions. In today’s culture, however, many people throughout all levels of government believe that they—rather than parents—know what is best for children. That is why many families are fearful of anonymous complaints made to Child Protective Services and of the resulting investigations.

In the United Kingdom, another family had to fight both the medical community and the government to receive life-saving medical treatment for their baby. This story highlights the anti-family view of the “government knows better than parents” crowd, a view which has literally denied families the chance to seek medical treatment for dying children.

Unlike recent cases, however, the family won and the child was saved as a result of a media battle against the government of Great Britain.

Sadly, but undeniably, it is no longer accepted in many areas that families should decide what is best for their own children. The right to do so is the foundation of our ability to teach our children at home.

That is why THSC continues to fight for the God-given right of parents to make those decisions. We must be vigilant lest we lose that most precious freedom to direct the care, control and upbringing of our children.

We believe that parents should be empowered to raise the next generation of leaders, which is why THSC is Keeping Texas Families Free. Please consider joining as a THSC member or making a donation to THSC today!

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July 24, 2018

Whose Responsibility is it to Raise Children?

For many years, THSC has fought in the courts, the legislature and with state agencies to promote and protect the freedom of Texas families to direct the care, control and upbringing of their children.

We believe that families have the God-given right to raise their children as they see fit—we fight hard at every level to protect and expand that right.

In 1985, public school unions and the Attorney General (AG) of Texas said that parents should not be allowed to teach their children at home. In fact, the AG said that parents were not qualified to raise their children, much less homeschool them.

This legal assault against Texas families led to the filing of the landmark Leeper v. Arlington ISD case that clarified once and for all the legality of homeschooling in Texas.

That day’s unanimous decision was the culmination of not only a long legal battle, but a public relations battle as well. The decision to sue the state of Texas was controversial and deeply divided the homeschool community.

Some argued that suing the state was a risk—it would draw attention to homeschoolers and could also result in a loss of our freedom through a bad court decision. One group went so far as to file a motion in court opposing the case and attempting to get it dismissed.

Today, we celebrate that legal victory and the many others that have followed. Together, they have made Texas a spectacular, shining beacon of freedom for homeschooling.

However, we often overlook the fact that this freedom was not “given” to us. It was won as a result of a long, hard and costly battle. We enjoy freedoms that many other states do not because we have been willing to pay the price of fighting for that freedom at every level.

THSC is for freedom; we oppose efforts at every level that would limit, diminish or erode the freedom of Texas families to raise (and educate) their children as they see fit. In addition, we support legislation and policies that would enhance, promote and protect that freedom, so long as there is nothing that would negatively impact that freedom.

Families, not the state, have the God-given right to raise their children.  

We continue to push for more protections, opportunities and choices for Texas families. Sometimes, we hear the same arguments that were brought up during the 1980s debated amongst Texas homeschoolers today.

Concerns and fears are expressed that more freedom for families might somehow result in the loss of our freedom to homeschool. The reality is that we must always defend this freedom—that is why THSC exists!

We believe that parents should be empowered to raise the next generation of leaders, which is why THSC is Keeping Texas Families Free. Please consider joining as a THSC member or making a donation to THSC today!

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July 17, 2018

The War Against Free Speech

The left has been warring against free speech for some time now. We’ve all heard the attacks against hate speech, which often is simply speech or ideas that those on the left disagree with.

Students on college campuses riot and attack speakers that they do not agree with on the grounds that people should not have the freedom to say what they want, especially if it flies in the face of accepted liberal dogma.

The New York Times ran an opinion piece disguised as news on its front page which was titled “How Conservatives Weaponized Free Speech”—and of course, this is very dangerous reasoning. This phrase was coined recently by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan who has dissented in a number of opinions that upheld free speech.

The phrase “weaponizing the First Amendment” reminds me of the scene from the recent movie about Winston Churchill in which Churchill won over the British Parliament in his famous speech to fight and never surrender. One character asks another what happened, and the response is that Churchill “mobilized the English language and sent it into battle.”

One of those ideas that the left hates so much is the Citizens United decision that allows non-profits like THSC to participate in political speech.

Once again, those on the left want to limit this free speech by forcing these groups to be treated like Political Action Committees (PACs) and requiring them to identify their donors.

As Texas Gov. Perry recognized when he vetoed legislation on this issue, such requirements have a “chilling effect” on free speech because those who oppose an idea often attack the donors in an attempt to make them cave in and pull their support.

This battle is being played out here in Texas as well, as THSC has sued the Texas Ethics Commission (TEC) in regard to its rules that we believe are violating the Texas Election Code and are unconstitutional. We are currently awaiting a ruling from the Texas Third Court of Appeals on this matter.

Empower Texans reports that in 2013 TEC Chairman Paul Hobby was quoted in an interview, “You ought to see these people who leave our meetings in tears, these sweet, simple people who missed a box, missed a deadline. They get a letter [from the Ethics Commission] and they can’t sleep at night, they hire a lawyer they can’t afford. There’s no moral sanction here, they’re not convicted felons. But these people swear, they promise, ‘I’ll never participate in the process again.’”

The TEC has recently adopted new administrative rules for the first time in 25 years but the new chairman says those rules don’t matter. It has been said by some who have been dragged through the TEC process that “the process is the punishment.”

The TEC continues their assault against free speech. THSC and others continue our battle to protect the right of every non-profit group in Texas to freely participate in political speech.

Ideas have consequences and, as Churchill proved, one can “mobilize the English language” to win the battle of ideas which have real consequences.

Thank you for your prayers and support of THSC and our efforts in Keeping Texas Families Free.” We believe that parents should be empowered to raise the next generation of leaders. Would you please continue in your support of THSC and donate today?

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July 10, 2018

Bureaucrats and Freedom

I came across an article in The Federalist which clearly outlines the danger that we’ve been warning about for months. An organization is running a national campaign to use cases of abuse or neglect to encourage a call for radical state regulation of homeschooling in every state of the union.

This article points out the failure of government agencies and workers at almost every level that has resulted in the tragedy involving the family in question. This, by the way, is usually the case.

For decades in Texas we have dealt with calls from those who believe that government regulation is the solution to every problem; that more state regulation of homeschooling is the solution to every case in which a child is abused or neglected in a homeschool family.

The reality is that in almost every one of those cases, Child Protective Services has been involved or aware of the situation and not taken appropriate action.

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This is the case in Connecticut—the bureaucracies that failed to protect an innocent child are now trying to scapegoat homeschoolers and argue that the solution is to pass legislation that would greatly reduce the freedom currently enjoyed by families in Connecticut.

The Federalist put it this way:

“Targeting homeschooling families in the wake of child abuse cases in which there is so much evidence that school districts and state agencies failed to perform their duties to protect children seems beyond comprehension. This is even more so when we consider that these same schools and agencies will be asked to oversee many already successful homeschoolers.”

We have been responding to news stories and editorials across Texas highlighting this issue and calling for Texas to regulate homeschooling. Our responses have been published in The Houston Chronicle, San Antonio Express News, The Texas Tribune and the San Angelo Times.

The national media has focused on homeschooling. There is a dramatic increase of the number of families considering homeschooling due to the recent shootings in public schools, and safety has become a tipping point for some families as they contemplate a course of action for the approaching 2018-19 school year.

In spite of the thousands of families in Texas who are considering homeschooling, we could face an attempt in next year’s legislative session to radically restrict homeschooling.

We must be prepared.

The first step is to ensure that we elect legislators who support the God-given right of families to raise their children as they see fit. That will happen in November. THSC will be providing input as the election draws near and we’ll be watching when the legislature meets. We are prepared to sound the alarm should some legislator try to take our freedom.

Thank you for praying for us and for fighting with us.

We believe that homeschooling is the best education model and we support families in making and carrying out that decision. Will you help us continue Keeping Texas Families Free to homeschool? Please donate today.

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July 3, 2018

The U.S. Supreme Court and Freedom

U. S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy has announced his retirement. The whole country is abuzz regarding who will be appointed to replace him and what that will mean for the country—and for key issues like life and gun ownership.

This is a critical issue, and the reaction of those on the left shows why it is important. Kennedy has been a swing vote on the court for decades and the key vote on saving the “right to abortion” and for legalizing homosexuality and same-sex marriage. The left is rightly concerned about what such a change on the court might mean for these litmus test issues.

In listening to discussions on this issue, I noted that Kennedy became the swing vote after Sandra Day O’Connor left the court. There is speculation that the least conservative justice on the court will become the next swing vote to save the left’s agenda that has been adopted through the courts.

Some think that the new swing vote will be Chief Justice John Roberts due to his joining the liberal block in saving Obamacare.

Of course, there are two other justices on the court that are over 80, and President Trump could be able to appoint as many as five justices should he be re-elected and the Republicans maintain control of the U.S. Senate.

Such a Time as This

As I have been contemplating all of this, I’ve been thinking of our battle for homeschool freedom in Texas back in the 1980s.

I and many others believed then that if we won the Leeper case at the Texas Supreme Court, our fight would be over and we could enjoy our freedom without the demand of so much focus on legislation, the courts and politics. We were wrong!

We live in a time when the culture of our country is deeply divided on fundamental issues such as life and biblical morality.

I was reminded of this culture war as I read an excerpt from a book discussing the centuries-long battle by Christians in Spain against Muslim invaders. I was struck by the centuries of war and deprivation that Christians suffered under Muslim control before final freedom.

So I have come to believe that we must continually be vigilant, for our freedom is always at risk.

Every election is a battle in the war to maintain our freedom and every legislative session is a fight of defense or offense to expand or keep the freedom that families have.

Every time we elect a pro-family judge in the courts at the federal or state levels, it is only a temporary victory or defeat—for there is always another battle in Keeping Texas Families Free. Let us press on!

Thank you for your prayers and support of THSC in this critical and long battle to support families in their God-given right to raise their children as they see fit. Would you please continue in your support of THSC and donate today?

Read the rest of The Family Freedom Caller, including Tim’s Weekly Tweets

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