Educator: Society – not parents – should dictate what kids need to know

Educator: Society – not parents – should dictate what kids need to know

Educator: Society – not parents – should dictate what kids need to know

An Arizona teacher who said the "quiet part" out loud in a legislative committee hearing recently may wish she had kept her "advanced degree" thoughts to herself.

Public school teacher Alicia Messing testified last week before the Arizona State Education Committee in opposition to Senate Bill 1700, which would give parents the right to review and – through a defined procedure – seek to remove sexually explicit or deviant books from school libraries and classrooms. First, the special education teacher argued that parents aren't qualified to teach their children:

Messing: "I have a master's degree because when I got certified I was told I had to have a master's degree to be an Arizona certified teacher. We all have advanced degrees. What do the parents have? Are we vetting the backgrounds of our parents? Are we allowing the parents to choose the curriculum and the books that our children are going to read? I think that is a mistake."

But then she lets slip the real reason liberal teaches want parents out of the classroom:

Messing: "We must remember that the purpose of public education is not to teach only what parents want their children to be taught; it is to teach them what society needs them to be taught."

Abraham Hamilton III – on his American Family Radio program on Monday – said the nature of the first statement is "incendiary and condescending" as well as "insensitive and insulting."

Hamilton, Abraham (AFA attorney) Hamilton

Hamilton also challenged the implication of the second statement. "The implication is that parents do not have society's best interests in mind; and in fact, that parents can be an impediment to cultivating what society needs," the radio host offered.

He argued that "regressives," as he describes them, believe society needs rid itself of God.

"When we require, by institutionalized establishment, the majority of our young people to be discipled in a way that intentionally and systematically denies the knowledge of God, is there any wonder that we have an increasingly wicked society?" Hamilton asked.

The Arizona Daily Independent quotes a concerned parent who described Messing's remarks as an "attack" against parents that motivates them to look more than ever for education options for their children.

"To infer that parents don't know what's best for their child, especially as it relates to books potentially containing explicit sexual content, parents absolutely should have a say as to what is appropriate material for their children," that parent stated.

The Daily Independent also notes that Messing was among more than 4,000 teachers who, in 2021, signed a pledge to defy a proposed law that would have prevented the teaching of critical race theory-based curriculum in public classrooms.

The primary sponsor of Senate Bill 1700 is Republican Justine Wadsack, who is vice-chairman of the Education Committee.