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National Anti-LGBT Hate Groups Join Fight Against Tennessee High Schoolers’ Gay-Straight Alliance

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MassResistance, Liberty Counsel Lobby School Board Members Ahead of Monday’s Meeting

Two anti-LGBT hate groups from out of state, MassResistance and Liberty Counsel, reportedly have joined the battle against a newly formed Gay-Straight Alliance at Franklin County High School in Winchester, Tennessee. 

In response to a controversy over the GSA, the Franklin County school board will again discuss its policies related to student organizations on Monday night. Chairman Kevin Caroland recently told The New Civil Rights Movement that officials may consider eliminating all 17 of the school’s non-curricular clubs in an effort to ban the GSA without violating the federal Equal Access Act. 

MassResistance, which is listed by the Southern Poverty Law Center as an anti-LGBT hate group, reported Saturday that it had been contacted about the GSA by local parents and a Franklin County school board member, and now plans to send a representative to the meeting. 

MassResistance also reportedly contacted the Liberty Counsel, also listed by the SPLC as an anti-LGBT hate group. Liberty Counsel has provided legal guidance to local officials. 

“With a good legal group now backing them, a decision has been made to take a vote at the School Board’s upcoming meeting this Monday, March 14,” MassResistance wrote. “If the Board does the right thing, listens to their outraged constituents, and votes to disband the GSA club in the face of the LGBT movement, it will be a great show of pro-family strength. And it could be the start of a larger counter-revolution in other places!”

Lisa Rung, a local citizen journalist, disputed MassResistance’s account, saying it was actually a representative from the group, Brian Camenker, who contacted the school board member: 

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Rung also said in an interview with Franklin County Buzz that even if the school board eliminates all non-curricular clubs, it could be a violation of the Equal Access Act, since it’s clear officials are targeting the GSA. 

“It is absolutely cut and dried; the only reason you’re doing this is because of that one club,” Rung said. “They’re basically saying, ‘We want to erase you, we wish you didn’t exist, and to say that to someone who’s already marginalized. … I hope they won’t walk off a cliff. They’re talking about walking off a cliff. It would be a very extreme thing they’re talking about doing.” 

Franklin County Buzz also reported that if the board violates federal law and loses in court, individual members could be held liable.

The school board has again moved its meeting to the Franklin County High School auditorium to accommodate a large expected crowd.

At the board’s last meeting, opponents of the GSA waved Christian flags and warned that the club is part of a “youth recruitment strategy” from radical gay activists, who want to expose children to fisting, rimming and anal sex. Opponents of the GSA have also compared it to ISIS, and students have vandalized the club’s posters and worn “Straight Pride” stickers in protest. 

Trouble for the Franklin County High School Gay-Straight Alliance first came in January when anti-gay parents compared the GSA to ISIS and called on school officials to resign for allowing it. 

The parent who compared the GSA to ISIS, apparently a Donald Trump supporter based on posts to his Facebook page, also posted the statement from MassResistance to his Facebook page.

Supporters of the GSA again plan a rally prior to the meeting, and they’ve launched a petition calling on the school board to keep non-curricular clubs. 

“In the high school, there are clubs related to the Christian faith,” Franklin County High School senior Katlyn Council wrote in the petition. “Also, in the high school, there are students who do not believe in the Christian faith. There is a simple solution the students in disagreeance with Christian clubs have already found: Don’t attend the club meetings.

“As a senior applying daily for admission into college and scholarship applications, I am able to firsthand tell you how important clubs are to students,” she wrote. “Punishing all students of FCHS is not the answer to a problem that already has a simple solution.”

The Franklin County Buzz reportedly will be streaming video from the rally and school board meeting on its YouTube channel.

 

EARLIER:

Tennessee Officials Weigh Eliminating All School Clubs in Attempt to Ban Gay-Straight Alliance

Anti-Gay Parents Tell TN School Board Gay-Straight Alliance Will Be Used To ‘Recruit’ Children

Anti-LGBT Parents Force Tennessee School Board To Consider Shutting Down Gay-Straight Alliance

 

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Legal Expert: Bill Barr Faces Potential ‘Criminal Investigation’

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Judge Amy Berman Jackson, the federal judge who gave prison sentences to two of former President Donald Trump’s close allies — his 2016 campaign manager Paul Manafort and veteran GOP operative Roger Stone — was highly critical of former U.S. Attorney General William Barr in a recent ruling, describing his response to the Mueller Report as “disingenuous.” And legal expert Neal Katyal, who served as acting solicitor general under President Barack Obama, described Jackson’s comments as highly damning during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House” this week.

Host Nicolle Wallace, a Never Trump conservative who served as White House communications director under President George W. Bush, told Katyal that Barr “misrepresented” the “conclusions” that Barr reached after former Special Counsel Robert Mueller wrapped up the Russia investigation — asking Katyal to weigh in on the “political damage” that Barr did to the United States. And he responded that it gives him no pleasure to have been right when he appeared on MSNBC in 2019 and said that Barr was distorting the Mueller Report.

The 51-year-old Katyal told Wallace and Washington Post reporter Carol Leonnig — who also appeared as a guest — “I’m not sitting here feeling good about the fact that I and so many others were right two years ago. I mean, I desperately wanted to be wrong. And our system is set up to trust the attorney general. I mean, Barr was the attorney general of the United States, not the attorney general for President Trump. That’s what he was supposed to be — he was supposed to be for the people. But unfortunately, there was always a degree of corruption around him, and he constantly acted like one of Donald Trump’s personal attorneys.”

Katyal continued, “And now, with the new decision by the judge into his deception, he’s finally being treated like one of the gang — which he always was…. What you have in this decision by the judge yesterday — by Judge Amy Berman Jackson, who is a meticulous judge — is a statement that no, Barr actually lied to the court and to the American people. She called, you know, Barr’s actions, in the litigating position, disingenuous, which is something you almost never hear a federal judge say about any litigant — particularly not someone from the Justice Department and particularly not the attorney general of the United States.”

Katyal added that when a federal judge of Jackson’s stature describes one’s testimony before Congress as “disingenuous,” it’s “time to start thinking about retaining counsel, legal counsel.”

“There is the possibility of a criminal investigation into Bill Barr now,” Katyal told Wallace and Leonnig. “There’s also the possibility of civil and disciplinary actions against him as well.”

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Liz Cheney Secretly Organized Key Move to Block Trump From Using Military to Overturn Election: Report

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Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) was the organizer of an open letter by all living former Defense Secretaries against the military intervening in election disputes.

The revelation was made to Susan Glasser of The New Yorker by Eric Edelman, a friend of Cheney’s who served as an advisor to her father.

“Cheney’s rupture with the House Republican Conference has become all but final in recent days, but it has been months in the making. Edelman revealed that Cheney herself secretly orchestrated an unprecedented op-ed in the Washington Post by all ten living former Defense Secretaries, including her father, warning against Trump’s efforts to politicize the military,” Glasser reported.

“The congresswoman not only recruited her father but personally asked others, including Trump’s first Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis, to participate. ‘She was the one who generated it, because she was so worried about what Trump might do,’ Edelman said. ‘It speaks to the degree that she was concerned about the threat to our democracy that Trump represented.’ The Post op-ed appeared on January 3rd, just three days before the insurrection at the Capitol,” she reported.

It wasn’t the only action she took.

“Little noticed at the time was another Cheney effort to combat Trump’s post-election lies, a twenty-one-page memo written by Cheney and her husband, Phil Perry, an attorney, and circulated on January 3rd to the entire House Republican Conference. In it, Cheney debunked Trump’s false claims about election fraud and warned her colleagues that voting to overturn the election results, as Trump was insisting, would ‘set an exceptionally dangerous precedent.’ But, of course, they did not listen. Even after the storming of the Capitol, a hundred and forty-seven Republican lawmakers voted against accepting the election results,” Glaser wrote.

The joint letter was signed by Ashton Carter, Dick Cheney, William Cohen, Mark Esper, Robert Gates, Chuck Hagel, James Mattis, Leon Panetta, William Perry and Donald Rumsfeld.

“American elections and the peaceful transfers of power that result are hallmarks of our democracy. With one singular and tragic exception that cost the lives of more Americans than all of our other wars combined, the United States has had an unbroken record of such transitions since 1789, including in times of partisan strife, war, epidemics and economic depression. This year should be no exception,” the former defense secretaries wrote.

“Our elections have occurred. Recounts and audits have been conducted. Appropriate challenges have been addressed by the courts. Governors have certified the results. And the electoral college has voted. The time for questioning the results has passed; the time for the formal counting of the electoral college votes, as prescribed in the Constitution and statute, has arrived,” they explained. “As senior Defense Department leaders have noted, ‘there’s no role for the U.S. military in determining the outcome of a U.S. election.’ Efforts to involve the U.S. armed forces in resolving election disputes would take us into dangerous, unlawful and unconstitutional territory. Civilian and military officials who direct or carry out such measures would be accountable, including potentially facing criminal penalties, for the grave consequences of their actions on our republic.”

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'EXISTENTIAL THREAT'

‘DEFCON 1 Moment’: Former Obama Advisor Slams Republicans Who ‘Hate Democracy’ and Warns It’s ‘Hanging by a Thread’

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“This is an existential threat”

David Plouffe, former President Barack Obama’s campaign manager and White House senior advisor, slammed Republican lawmakers who “hate democracy,” which he warned is “hanging by a thread.” He also urged the Dept. of Justice to be “all over” the recount on Arizona, but warned the white supremacists, QAnon and MAGA cultists have already decided that Trump won the state, despite the actual facts that Joe Biden won, a fact that Republicans in positions of power agree with.

“This is a DEF CON 1 moment for democracy,”  Plouffe told MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace. “We’re not threatened by other nations or enemies, it’s a threat from within. Democracy is hanging by the thinnest thread in our country’s history. And what’s happening in Phoenix, Arizona, should be happening across the board of Roswell, New Mexico,” he added, apparently mocking Area 51 conspiracy theorists.

“It’s just crazy town. ”

“By the way there’s no question that the end of this ridiculous theatricality of the collection of white nationalists and QAnon supporters and Trump cult members are going to say, ‘you know, Trump should have won Arizona.’ We already know the outcome. But this is deadly serious. The Department of Justice needs to be all over this not just in Arizona, but all these efforts around the country.”

Plouffe called it “puzzling” because “you’ve got all these Republican elected officials who are in office because they chose to participate in the theater of democracy, and I’m not sure we’ve ever seen people in America hate democracy this much, because basically what they want to do is enshrine themselves in power and they’re doing it because they’re fearful of this ridiculous, shameful, historically incompetent cult leader down in Mar-a-Lago, who they all traipse down there and pledge allegiance to,” he said of Donald Trump.

“And none of them got into politics because they thought they were going to be weak-kneed and bending the ring to a cult leader but that’s where they’ve found themselves. Issues are secondary, their own careers in many respects are secondary.”

“Everybody who’s concerned about this country, not about who wins the next election or the one after that, but the entire enterprise is at risk here. This is an existential threat. And so it’s great to see DOJ, getting involved, to see a lot of groups like Mark Elias’ are starting to file lawsuits, but what ultimately needs to happen here and this won’t solve all of it is Congress must act.”

“They must pass voting rights legislation, and if they don’t because a few Democratic senators decide that protecting the filibuster, which of course has its roots in slavery and racism, you’re going to basically protect that, so that our democracy and our country can be handed over in permanence, to a party that increasingly is comfortable with white nationalism,” Plouffe said, it would be “tragic.”

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