(Afton, IA) A student during a middle school home economics class at East Union Secondary School recorded the teacher, Nancy Beall, spend 40 minutes out of a 45 minute class on Wednesday, November 10th criticizing President-elect Donald Trump, gun rights, and U.S. Senator Joni Ernst in a discussion with her students. Beall teaches family and consumer science classes which includes classes such as Child Development, Food Prep, Health 1, Health 2, and Life Issues. This is her first school year with the East Union Community School District.
The audio was first released Friday on the Simon Conway Show on WHO Radio in Des Moines.
“Trump has made it ok that people can harass, and do all that kind of stuff,” Beall is heard saying during the audio recording.
“Students in Des Moines walked out of class yesterday (November 9th) and protested Trump winning, ok. Now students have a right to do that. You know, because, if your constitutionally protected, free speech that the Supreme Court ruled you have the right to speech, your right to speak and that, and it is protected by the school,” Beall said in class.
Students obviously have the right to free speech regardless of what the Supreme Court ruled. The Supreme Court case she was likely referring to is Tinker v. Des Moines Community Independent School District. In 1969 Justice Abraham Fortas famously wrote in the majority opinion that it “can hardly be argued that either students or teachers shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate.”
The opinion also noted that there were limits on that speech if it disrupted the work of the school and the educational process or infringed on another students’ rights. So it’s unclear whether Tinker really covers what happened in Des Moines since students walked out of class.
She complained about an alleged Trump political ad.
“I did not like the ad, my son was furious at the ad, that said that Syrians were coming here to kill us. There is a, and my son works with this, there is a long process that takes years for them to get here. They have to go through all this red tape, everything, and then… so students walked out,” she explained.
The only campaign commercial that Donald Trump released referencing Syrian refugees was the “Two Americas” ad that you can see below.
In the ad it says describing Hillary Clinton’s America, “Syrian refugees flood in and illegal immigrants convicted of committing crimes get to stay collecting social security benefits, skipping the line, borders are open. It’s more of the same, but worse.”
No mention of Syrians killing us.
She discussed Trump’s remarks about Mexico. “Trump has made so many remarks to Mexico, like building this wall that will never happen, and he wants them to pay for it, and that’s never going to happen.”
I happen to agree with her, but the difference here is that I express my opinion on the subject at CaffeinatedThoughts.com, on Caffeinated Thoughts Radio, on social media or when talking with family and friends. I don’t express my opinion to a captive audience in a middle school home economics class.
“Russia was good with him because he was talking to Russia before when he was campaigning,” she noted.
He was talking with Russia while he was campaigning? What?
“In case you don’t know, Iowa, all of the rural areas are all red. The big metro areas like Des Moines, Iowa City, Cedar Rapids, Sioux City were all blue and that, but not enough to overrule, and that. But you are eventually going to see the bigger cities getting bigger, and that, so things are going to kinda swing, and that, so I’m going to say in two years when we vote again for all of the people who are in the House of Representatives,” Beall said providing her “expert” analysis.
If Mrs. Beall was paying attention she would see that Iowa is trending red, not vice versa. Even Democrats would admit that and it doesn’t look like it will change any time soon let alone in two years. It is highly unlikely that incumbent Republican members of Congress in our state will get voted out during a midterm election when turnout is down.
She continues her *expert* analysis, “When things get cut that affect the Democrats, ok, things like food stamps and I don’t want anybody to say anything about your families. I don’t need to hear who is on food stamps. Food stamps is something that will probably, definitely be cut in Iowa because Republicans a lot of times, and my brothers are included in that, they think people should get off their butts and work.”
She then discussed the 2nd Amendment, “This is a big, big misconception with Republicans. Democrats don’t want to take away your hunting guns, your shotguns, I mean that’s – there’s no problem with those. I do have a problem because that is what killed the police officer in Urbandale, but that is besides the point. It is for the people who get those…. yeah… those guns that go (makes a ridiculous sounding noise imitating an automatic weapon) that kill hundreds of people. There’s no business having those in our state.”
First, the 2nd Amendment does not protect just hunters. Second, I know of no Republican who has said that Democrats want to take away “hunting guns.” Third, there is already a federal automatic weapons ban unless you pay a ton of money and obtain an automatic weapons permit along with all of the screening that accompanies that.
Perhaps she should actually try to know what she is talking about before opening her mouth and passing her ignorance along to the kids.
She then discusses immigration, “Hundreds of thousands of DACA, I’m not sure what that… recipients to the U.S. can now easily be found and deported. Those people are here. They went through the process to get here.”
DACA stands for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. In a nutshell this was an executive action taken by President Obama for those who entered the country illegally before their 16th birthday. DACA allows these recipients to receive a two-year renewable work permit and exemption from deportation.
What process? They did not come here legally. This program is not federal law. It was an unconstitutional action taken by President Obama because Congress didn’t give him what he wanted. The accompanying program, Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) has largely been stopped in federal court, but DACA was in legal limbo even before the election.
Also 1.4 million people registered for DACA, that doesn’t mean they are recipients and they certainly didn’t go through the process to get here.
This is a matter for Congress to take up. Our constitution does not allow for an imperial presidency.
She goes on. “So David Young sponsored a bill and Grassley and I can’t remember the lady… who is our female senator?”
Oh my goodness she doesn’t know who our U.S. Senators are!? Apparently one of her students educated her.
“Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah…. I can not stand that lady,” she added.
She then mentions Congressman David Young (R-Iowa) sponsored called Sarah’s Law. It requires U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to take custody of any individual who has entered or remains in the United States illegally and is also charged with a crime resulting in the death or serious bodily injury of another person.
This was named after Sarah Root who was allegedly killed by an illegal immigrant Eswin Mejia who was driving while drunk. Local law enforcement requested that he be detained by ICE, but those requests were declined. He has since skipped bail is at large.
Beall discusses this bill, “He passed a law called Sarah’s Law. Sarah’s Law was named after a girl, a young girl, probably in her 20s, that got killed maybe over by Council Bluffs, somewhere over there. She got killed by somebody who was here illegally. Ok, so that’s a big issue right there, two issues. So he was arrested and somehow because he wasn’t a citizen, immigration got involved, I don’t know what all happened, but somehow he was loose and he left our country. Ok, so getting somebody back here from another country is a lot of red tape and he’s not back here. This girl got killed, the family is upset, because she died and then the guy who should be in prison is not so they passed something that would prevent the loophole because sometimes… Criminals do have rights.”
Yes, criminals have rights, what is the point? Sarah’s Law would not violate Meija’s right to trial by jury or speedy trial or any of that. It would have ensured that he would face justice instead of fleeing the country. So what right does this somehow violate?
Also she said, “I don’t know what all happened.” If you don’t know what all happened perhaps you shouldn’t be talking about it with your class.
I spoke with Lance Ridgely, the Superintendent of the East Union Community School District, he referred me to his statement that was sent to staff and parents this morning, “We support our teachers’ rights to have and share their personal opinions, however, there is an appropriate time, place and manner for sharing these personal opinions.”
That is an understatement. I hope that this teacher faces some sort of discipline.
It is likely if conversations like these are happening in the East Union Community School District then they are happening elsewhere throughout the state as well.
You can listen to the first hour of Simon Conway’s show below: