Screenshot of Truthout

“Frederick Clarkson is a senior research analyst at Political Research Associates, a 40-year-old Somerville, Massachusetts-based think tank that monitors the religious and secular right wing. He told Truthout that while the current attempt to control public education has to be taken seriously, it is not unprecedented. Furthermore, he says that what is unfolding essentially puts a new spin on an old agenda. ‘These efforts have deep roots,’ Clarkson says. ‘MAGA goals and ideology go back to the Barry Goldwater for president campaign of 1964. Then, in the 1980s, the Christian Coalition worked to elect people to school boards. What’s new here is the overt alliance between Christian right groups and groups that are part of the ‘patriot’ or militia movements. What’s new is the scale of the mobilization that is happening and the fact that the threat to public education is ramping up.’”

“Political Research Associates staffers Steven Gardiner and Tarso Luís Ramos, in a January 2022 report entitled, ‘Capitol Offenses: January 6, 2021 and the Ongoing Insurrection,’ conclude that, ‘the Left, broadly speaking, has to recognize that the fight against far-right authoritarians and ultra-nationalists cannot be won without a broad coalition.’ They call for the formation of an inclusive, diverse, united front against the right wing that is threatening to topple democracy by destroying public education while simultaneously smashing unions, denying history, curtailing voting rights, overturning protections for LGBTQIA+ people, ending legal abortion and sidestepping efforts to protect the environment.”

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