Pushing back against wokeism – Washington Examiner


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 | February 16, 2022 12: 07 PM

PUSHING BACK AGAINST WOKEISM. Many conservatives believe that leftist activists are on a rampage through American institutions — schools, businesses, the justice system, cultural establishments, arts and entertainment, nearly every aspect of life — trashing norms and valued traditions as they go. Now we see, in San Francisco, California, of all places, a spirited pushback.
The triggering event happened a year ago, in January 2021, during the height of the pandemic. With schools closed and parents struggling to educate their children, the San Francisco school board devoted an enormous amount of time and energy to changing the names of schools named after American historical figures. The board voted to strip the names from 44 schools — schools named after George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, Herbert Hoover, Paul Revere, James A. Garfield, Francis Scott Key, William McKinley, Daniel Webster, Robert Louis Stevenson, Junipero Serra (the Spanish priest who founded missions across California), William Cullen Bryant, and others. The board also voted to change the name of Roosevelt Middle School, even though no one knew whether it was named after Theodore Roosevelt or Franklin Delano Roosevelt. If the targeted president was in fact Theodore Roosevelt, the San Francisco board scored a hat trick of sorts — canceling all four U.S. presidents depicted on Mount Rushmore.
The board even decided to change the name of Dianne Feinstein Elementary School, named after the current California Democratic senator, because in 1984, when Feinstein was mayor of San Francisco, a history exhibit called "Pavilion of American Flags," which had been in place since the 1960s, included a Confederate flag. Feinstein later apologized after a radical protester tore down the flag. The school board's School Names Advisory Committee chair said: "Dianne Feinstein chose to fly a flag that is the iconography of domestic racism, white avarice and inhumanity toward black and indigenous people at City Hall. She still has time to dedicate the rest of her life to the upliftment of black, first nations and other people of color. She hasn't thus far, so her apology simply wasn't convincing."
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The funny thing, or the tragic thing, was that all the schools were closed in COVID lockdown at the time the board voted to remove the names. The board appeared to devote more energy to its school-renaming mission than to trying to open the schools during the pandemic. That was too much, even for liberal San Francisco. Some parents began to organize. There was talk of a recall to remove some board members. Talk turned into action, and on Tuesday, the proposed recall of three board members went to the voters.
It wasn't even close. All three were soundly defeated — recalled — and will be removed from the board. Seventy-nine percent of voters favored recalling one of the members, while the margins for the other two were 75% and 73%. "It's the people rising up in revolt in San Francisco and saying it's unacceptable to abandon your responsibility to educate our children," a city parent named Siva Raj, who helped organize the recall, told the New York Times.
The recall is just one part of a wider revolt against wokeism. Politico recently obtained private polling done by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which is trying to get Democrats elected to the House this November. The survey found that many voters in battleground districts think Democrats are "preachy," "judgmental," and "focused on culture wars." Party strategists warned Democrats, according to Politico: "Unless they more forcefully confront the GOP's 'alarmingly potent' culture war attacks, from critical race theory to defunding the police, they risk losing significant ground to Republicans in the midterms."

Overlook the article's casual reference to Republican "attacks," as if the GOP is wantonly attacking Democrats who are just minding their own business. Whatever their denials, Democrats have been relentlessly pushing issues such as critical race theory in the schools; Republican "attacks" would better be described as "counterattacks." The news is that Republican pushback against wokeism is "alarmingly potent," which is another way of saying that many voters are receptive to the GOP argument — including voters Democrats need to win.
Finally, look at the speed with which many Democrats across the country are running away from the COVID restrictions they imposed and would still prefer to keep in place. The bottom line is woke, Democratic excesses are spurring predictable pushback across the country. With elections fast approaching, that is a terrifying place for Democratic candidates to be.
For a deeper dive into many of the topics covered in the Daily Memo, please listen to my podcast, The Byron York Show — available on the Ricochet Audio Network and everywhere else podcasts can be found. You can use this link to subscribe.

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