By Dave Andrusko
One of our friends is a member of the Virginia branch of the National Education Association. On occasion I will glance at its publication, the Virginia Journal of Education. It won’t take you long to figure out the Virginia Education Association is “progressive.”
So when National Review Online’s Alexandra DeSanctis reported yesterday that the “Nation’s Largest Teachers’ Union Embraces ‘Fundamental Right to Abortion,’” it came as no surprise.
The NEA, the nation’s largest union, works hand in glove with Democrats, which partially explains “Business Item 56” adopted over the weekend. It reads
Furthermore, the NEA will include an assertion of our defense of a person’s right to control their own body, especially for women, youth, and sexually marginalized people. The NEA vigorously opposes all attacks on the right to choose and stands on the fundamental right to abortion under Roe v. Wade.
It then cranks up the rhetoric under what it calls “Rationale/Background”:
The most misogynistic forces, under Trump, want to abolish the gains of the women’s right movement. Women’s leadership is essential for any successful egalitarian movement and therefore must be protected.
To her great credit DeSanctis directs her readers to a NEA publication called “The Truth about the NEA: The NEA responds to its Critics” (formerly known as Deceptions by the Radical Right against the National Education Association”).
DeSanctis pulled out this revealing boilerplate defense:
[The NEA’s] stance on this issue is often misinterpreted and misunderstood. NEA’s policy statement reads: “The National Education Association supports family planning, including the right to reproductive freedom.” What this means is that NEA supports the current protections guaranteed under the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision. This decision allows women to decide for themselves if they should have children—or not have children—and protects the constitutional rights of all women, whether they are pro-choice or anti-abortion.
DeSanctis offers two quite accurate conclusions:
Though in practice such a mindset would likely lead to supporting nearly unlimited abortion rights, this weekend’s sudden change in rhetoric indicates a desire to explicitly redefine abortion on demand as a fundamental right. Even more interesting is the fact that the NEA — a teachers’ union that ostensibly has no obvious reason to care about abortion policy or advocacy — evidently feels pressure to adopt a more radical stance as the Left becomes more dogmatic on the issue.
I’ll be talking more about this in a separate post today. In the meanwhile, as some trained as an educator with teachers in the family, it is deeply regrettable that the NEA has become just another adjunct to the abortion industry.