Indiana Attorney General says Black Lives Matter cannot be promoted in state’s public schools

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Attorney General Todd Rokita

Just as an Oregon school board voted to fire a superintendent for not moving fast enough to ban Black Lives Matter flags from school buildings, the attorney general of Indiana is saying that the Black Lives Matter movement needs to be regarded as a political group and that leftist school administrators and teachers should not be allowed to promote it in classrooms.

“Black Lives Matter is unequivocally a political organization,” Todd Rokita said in a Nov. 11 news release, reported at Indystar.com. “Promoting or displaying some politically-based materials while prohibiting the promotion or display of others could create a liability for schools and could violate the First Amendment.”

Rokita’s advisory opinion was elicited by two state lawmakers, Sen. John Crane, R-Brownsburg, and Rep. Michelle Davis, R-Whiteland. Crane and Davis requested an opinion from the attorney general amid growing national tension over the politicization of public school education and what Davis referred to as the “controversial ideology” of BLM.

“This opinion provides needed clarity about the underpinnings of the BLM movement, as well as reinforcing the importance of fair-minded presentations of all subject matter in our school classrooms,” Crane said in a news release circulated by the attorney general’s office. Davis said BLM is “dividing communities rather than uniting them.”

“It’s not [schools’] role to persuade students to believe in one ideology over another,” Davis said in the news release.

Crane said the issue isn’t whether black people’s lives matter but instead about the political, activist and militant nature of the movement. “Black lives do matter,” he said, “because all lives matter.” Rokita’s opinion, he said, makes it clear that BLM signs shouldn’t be in classrooms.

The opinion comes amid increasingly bitter debate around the country about how and what schools should be teaching about perceived racism permeating every aspect of American society, as leftists and progressives would have it.

Many see the teaching of this “critical race theory” as a way to indoctrinate children away from American values of freedom, individual liberty, rule of law, free markets, free speech and freedom of religion.

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