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Saturday, May 25, 2024

Yolo County Moms for Liberty members rally before Woodland school board meeting

The group spoke at the Woodland Joint Unified School District meeting 

 

By CHRIS PONCE — city@theaggie.org

 

Content Warning: This article contains discussions of transphobia.

 

On Thursday, Oct. 12, Yolo County Moms for Liberty held a rally in front of the Woodland Joint Unified School District (WJUSD) office to advocate for “parental rights” and protest against “gender identity” and “inclusivity training,” according to a flyer the group made. Following the rally, residents debated the rights of transgender youth during the school board meeting public comment section. 

A dozen residents, some members of Yolo County Moms for Liberty and some sympathetic to their cause, gathered in front of the school board office carrying signs that read, “Why are so many girls having double mastectomies?” and “Accepting biological reality is not hate.” Kathy, a person who attended the rally, grew up in Davis and has been a Woodland resident for four years. She preferred not to share her last name or if she was a member of Yolo County Moms for Liberty because she believes the group has been “demonized.”

“I wanted to support parents rights, parents being able to decide what their children are taught and some of the things that are being taught to children right now aren’t even scientifically accurate,” Kathy said as she explained why she attended the rally.

Kathy said that she is very pro-woman but has never identified as a feminist. She also believes that feminist issues are at odds with trans issues. 

“I don’t know where the feminists are, they’re erasing women,” Kathy said. “This transgender ideology essentially erases women because now men can do all the ‘women things’ and call themselves women by putting on a skirt, and not even sometimes that.” 

Kathy expressed that those who attended the rally’s goal is to protect children and that she is only concerned with people transitioning in their youth.

“My main beef is not with people who are transgender, please make this clear,” Kathy said. “I have no problem with transgender people. I have a problem with children being medicalized before they really are adult enough or have the capacity to understand what that means to their medical future.”

Laura Brubaker, a Woodland resident with children who attend WJUSD schools, addressed Yolo County Moms for Liberty at the meeting. Brubaker spoke about how Davis residents have been speaking at WJUSD meetings, misrepresenting the beliefs of the Woodland community. 

“I’m speaking today to draw attention to some things that, as a Woodlander, I find really upsetting,” Brubaker said during the meeting. “An extremist group called [Yolo County] Moms for Liberty has been using social media to encourage outsiders to call in and attend or WJUSD meetings and make public comments, intentionally not mentioning that they live in other places and do not have students in our schools [in] an attempt to misrepresent the interests of the Woodland community as a whole.”

Beth Bourne, chair of Yolo County Moms for Liberty, addressed the school board during her public comment. She listed several California school districts who have attempted to mandate that schools notify parents if their children are transgender. Bourne believes that the WJUSD needs to adopt a similar policy.

“You’ve heard from your teachers; they are promoting gender ideology, and they will secretly transition children,” Bourne said. “There’s no requirement that they tell the parents. And I know they’re laughing, but that’s the case. I encourage you to let parents have a right [to be notified if their child is transgender]; loving parents let their gender non-conforming kids grow up to be gay, lesbian, bisexual or straight with their body intact. Hate is telling a child that everything central to their physical being is wrong with them, that they were born wrong, that their healthy body needs fixing with surgeries and drugs. That is the abuse, that is the hate.”

Anoosh Jorjorian, director of Yolo Rainbow Families, talked about the Davis Phoenix Coalition’s work to combat bullying and hate crimes in Yolo County. Jorjorian thanked the WJUSD Trustees who signed the “Yolo County is for Everyone” joint letter and thanked those who spoke at the “Davis is for Everyone” rally held on Oct. 10. 

“We do not want to see these tactics of bullying, harassment and intimidation happen to educators in Woodland,” Jorjorian said. “The Davis Phoenix Coalition has a video about digital hygiene to help anyone who may be targeted by Moms for Liberty for being LGBTQ+ or LGBTQ+ allies, just as we have in Davis. We are ready to stand with Woodland teachers for safety, security and freedom of expression for all.”

 

Written By: Chris Ponce city@theaggie.org