Democratic Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe has campaigned alongside a number of prominent politicians — including former President Barack Obama — as he squares off against GOP challenger Glenn Youngkin.
Some of Obama’s remarks at a recent campaign event, however, have overshadowed the upcoming election with some parents denouncing his “intentionally misleading” and “tone-deaf” rhetoric on the topic of public education.
“Serious problems that affect serious people”
According to Fox News, Youngkin has expressed agreement with Virginians concerned about safety measures and controversial curricula being implemented in the state’s school system while McAuliffe has aligned himself with progressive school boards and administrators.
During a rally on Saturday, Obama shared his opinion of the Republican candidate’s platform.
“We don’t have time to be wasting on these phony trumped-up culture wars, this fake outrage that right-wing media peddles to juice their ratings,” the former president said.
Former President @BarackObama: “We don’t have time to be wasted on these phony trumped-up culture wars, this fake outrage, the right-wing media’s pedals to juice their ratings.” pic.twitter.com/bmMnet8q5X
— The Hill (@thehill) October 23, 2021
He went on to accuse Youngkin of sidestepping “serious problems that affect serious people” through recent clashes between parents and school board members.
“It doesn’t feel like it’s culture war or fake outrage”
“Instead of stoking anger aimed at school boards and administrators who are just trying to keep our kids safe, we should be making it easier for teachers and schools to give our kids the world-class education they deserve, and to do so safely while they are in the classroom,” Obama said.
Of course, his remarks rubbed many parents the wrong way, particularly in the wake of a revelation that the Loudon County school board apparently sought to cover up the alleged sexual assault of a female student in a school restroom.
Brandon Michon, a parent in that county, slammed Obama’s rhetoric, declaring: “That is the most tone-deaf statement I have ever heard. First and foremost, everything that has come up with the cover-up in Loudon County has to do with a sexual assault on girls. To say that this is trumped-up as a political thing is laughable.”
He further asserted that all parents want their kids “to go to school and be safe” and many are genuinely concerned about the disturbing reports, concluding: “It doesn’t feel like it’s culture war or fake outrage.”
Laura Zorc, who serves as the director of Building Education for Students Together, took her complaints even further, insisting that Obama “is clearly clueless or intentionally misleading the crowd.”