At the last meeting of Mesa Public Schools governing board (as chronicled in our Substack), public commenters called teachers and the LGBTQIA community “perverts,” “groomers,” and “indoctrinators.” Folks talked about bathrooms and trans students, opposing bonds/overrides, “leftist” educators, academic outcomes, letter grades, and all kinds of other stuff that we don’t care to republish.
Going by these turnouts, it would seem that people who support actual education are outnumbered at least 3 to 1 by white Christian nationalist trolls.
But is that true? Let’s put it in perspective:
- Pew Reseearch found that 54% of Americans believe the federal government should enforce separation of church and state — as compared with just 19% who believe the federal government should stop.
- 7 in 10 U.S. adults said the government should never declare an official religion. Only 15% said the U.S. should be declared a Christian nation.
- Two-thirds of U.S. adults said the Constitution was written by humans and reflects their vision rather than God’s.
Most Americans believe in secular government. The only question is where are these Americans during school board meetings and elections?
This election cycle, most school boards in Arizona will have three seats up for grabs in 2024. Some of these districts only have Moms for Liberty followers running, and oftentimes receive backing from organizations like Turning Point USA. To make things worse, extremist school board members are using their time on the school board as a springboard for higher office.
It’s time to go on the offensive. Let’s show up. Mesa Public Schools meetings are held at the second and fourth Tuesday of the month at 549 N. Stapley Drive. Constituents can find their board members’ contact info here.
We're exploring ways to work with partners to train concerned citizens on getting more involved with their school boards — including helping them run for office. If you're interested, fill out the form here.
How School Board Meetings Became Flashpoints for Anger and Chaos Across the Country
In the first wide-ranging analysis of school board unrest, ProPublica found nearly 60 incidents that led to arrests or criminal charges. Almost all were in suburban districts, and nearly every participant was white. Some of the arrests and interactions with authorities were by design — conceived and filmed for maximum visibility.
"Violence is being used to destroy democracy"
Recently the Bridge, a small religious cult in Tucson supported by the Proud Boys, waged a campaign of intimidation against Bookman’s because of a scheduled drag story hour. Because of the threat of violence, the story hour was cancelled.
Meanwhile, legislators who were never concerned about shootings before are now supposedly concerned about a shooting at a religious school in Tennessee because the shooter was allegedly transgender.
In the past 41 years, 98% of the mass shooters have been men. At least 51% were white with 10% unknown. Courts claim that baking a cake or making a website for a gay wedding constitutes and endorsement for the wedding. But why is selling a gun to a mass shooter not considered an endorsement of murder?
Secular AZ Legal Director Dianne Post has more as published in the Capitol Times this week.
New Shared Calendar!
Ever wished there was just one place to look for all the secular events being held by all the members of our coalition? Well, you’re in luck! We just launched one here!
View, search, and filter events being held by Atheists Helping the Homeless Phoenix, FFRF-VSUN, HSGP, Phoenix Atheists Meetup Group, Prescott Freethinkers, Reason Riders, Tucson Atheist Community Outreach Team, and others.
HELP WANTED: Calling All Pastafarians & Pirates!
Ahoy, Mateys! Humanist Society of Greater Phoenix is looking for a crew of spirited volunteers to help plan the most swashbuckling event of the year—the annual Flying Spaghetti Monster Celebration on Oct 28th!
Come onboard for the first planning meeting on Monday July 31 at 6:30pm and enlist to help!
More details here.
PO Box 47756 | Phoenix, Arizona 85068
6023804810 | firstname.lastname@example.org