Virginia’s Fairfax Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) on Saturday announced that its vice-president of training, Michelle Leete, had resigned following comments about how those who do not support critical race theory can “die”.
“The actions & rhetoric of Ms. Leete & all of the like-minded partisan supporters of the SB are deeply disappointing. It evinces a deep lack of concern for children & parents, particularly where the wellbeing of children & families clash with political considerations,” Virginia PTA tweeted.
The PTA also vowed to “continue to fight for the kids.”
The actions & rhetoric of Ms. Leete & all of the like-minded partisan supporters of the SB are deeply disappointing.
It evinces a deep lack of concern for children & parents, particularly where the wellbeing of children & families clash with political considerations.
— Fairfax County Parents Assocation (@FFXParentsAssoc) July 17, 2021
At a Thursday rally, Leete was heard denouncing opponents of critical race theory, finishing her emotional speech with a harsh comment.
“Let’s deny this off-key band of people that are anti-education, anti-teacher, anti-equity, anti-history, anti-racial … anti-opportunities, anti-help people, anti-diversity, [inaudible], anti-science, anti-change agent, anti-social justice, anti-health care, anti-worker, anti-LGBTQ+, anti-children, anti-health care, anti-worker, anti-environment, anti-admissions policy change, anti-inclusion, anti-live and let live – let them die!”, Leete said, as her calls met with applause from the audience.
Virginia’s PTA clarified that Leete was not speaking at the rally “in her role within Virginia PTA”, and condemned her “choice of words”.
Leete’s comments sparked outrage among social media users and parents, with the some of the latter voicing concern that their children were being “indoctrinated” into critical race theory – a movement suggesting that the social, political, and economic systems in the United States are systemically racist.
“My message to this district and the members of the Board of [Education]: Stop indoctrinating our children!” Tatiana Ibrahim said back in June, cited by Fox News. “Stop teaching our children to hate the police! Stop teaching our children that if they don’t agree with the LGBT community that they’re homophobic!”
Earlier in the year, concern and opposition to the implementation of CRT-related classes and assignments into the school curriculum were voiced in Georgia, Rhode Island, California, and several other states. The criticism is supported by conservatives, including the former president, Donald Trump, who remarked that he thought critical race theory was “anti-American” and “toxic”.