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Welcome to The Luke Macias Show. Last week I wrote a piece and release our episode and talked about the 11 moderate Republicans who teamed up with Democrats to kill an amendment that would have said that no money can go to children’s hospitals who are actively socially transitioning children. 

A gross practice that is still legal in Texas today. Well, Representative JC jutaan, and Stan Kitzman provided responses to that article, Jason jutaan did it publicly and Stan Kitzman did it to a constituent who asked a concerning question. And we have those responses for you today, we’re going to break them down, and also the multiple inaccuracies in them. 

Also, I’m joined today by Joe Hyde, who runs San Angelo live. And he and I are also going to talk since he wrote an article about my piece, just giving an alternative perspective, as somebody who reports to many of drew Darby, his constituents drew Darby is also one of those 11. Republicans. So we’ve got a lot to cover today. Let’s get to the show. 

So we can half ago, I wrote a piece on Texas scorecard that they published about the 11 Republicans who sided with Democrats to support taxpayer funding to institutions that are socially transitioning young Texans. Now let’s talk about what this is real quick. And I do this in the piece. But I want to kind of start by explaining what social transitioning is. 

See, the transgender religion is hell bent on convincing children of a lie, a lie that a little girl can become a little boy, that a little boy can become a little girl, it says, a topic that we’ve talked about for years on the lunacy a show? Well, one of the ways that that actually starts, in fact, the way it does start, is that a psychologist is involved. It’s not a medical professional, is a child psychologist who meets with a 2345678 year old child. 

And they say, Hey, Sarah, maybe you were born in the wrong body. Maybe you’re actually a boy. And this Gnostic evil idea and lie is then try it child is catechized into a way of thinking, Maybe I am a boy, or maybe I a young boy, and actually a girl. And thus starts the process of socially transitioning. And what will then follow is weeks of therapy, where this child is basically catechized into this way of thinking, and then they’ll do things socially, like, Hey, I think it’s time to enroll Tommy in school, as a girl, but before that, we should have a coming out party, and they’ll have everyone over to the house. 

And they’ll say guys, Tommy is now Rachel. And this might be when he’s six, seven, or eight. And they’ll say his old name is now dead name, you will never use that name. Again. In fact, calling him his male name at birth that aligns with who he is, is actually a way of hating him. And then they’ll tell all of his friends, you are now to refer to her, they’ll start using the female pronouns as and they’ll give him a female name, Rachel, Sarah, this is the process of socially transitioning. 

And the psychologist is teaming up with the parents to figure this out. And then they say, Well, now that all of his or all of her because they’re at that point, calling him or her, they’ll say well, now, now that we’ve come out to the community, now it’s time to enroll this child in school as their new name, and their new gender. And then all the teachers will join in, and continue to lie to this child. This is the type of abuse that is still happening in Texas today. 

Because it wasn’t addressed in the transgender ban, that passed the transgender ban that passed, which we’re going to get to in a second, dealt with the most extreme versions of this religious cult, it dealt with the surgical removal of the genitalia and the breasts of the child, it dealt with the actual blocking of the puberty of the child, and then the application of cross sex hormones. So you blocked puberty first, then you apply the cross sex hormones. 

But all of that doesn’t usually happen until 10, 11, 12. So what wasn’t addressed is all of the transgender services that happen prior to that. And then also the other stuff that happens alongside if you think that a 12 and 13 and 14 year old aren’t still meeting with these leftist psychologists, you’re wrong. And in fact, this came up during the debate of SB 14. 

I’ve pulled just one clip of discussions between representative Tony Tinder old and a psychologist that actually testified and I want to go to this clip for a couple minutes and come back. But here’s what you need to know before this. First and foremost, JC jutaan sat throughout the hours of testimony on this bill. And not only that there were private discussions on the policy of transgender bring children. Okay, one thing that was very clear is that the psychological services were not included in the bill, not only in the clip we’re about to go to, but in subsequent discussions that happened, JC jutaan, was actually not in his chair when this discussion happened. 

So we can honestly say he didn’t hear this exchange. But there were multiple other exchanges, I want to go to this clip, so you can get an understanding of the reason I’m certain that this is still happening in Texas, let’s go to this. 

“So do you assist some of these folks, young children in transition? I assist in their mental health care during transition? That’s grasping, sir. So Are you supportive of it with the individuals? I think that’s a fair statement in the context of, you know, doing, again, a careful assessment, collaborating with parents collaborating with the young person. So as we go through this, if this bill passes, the way that it is, you can continue to do the services you do, they just won’t be able to get the medication, and they may not be able to get the surgery, is that correct? That’s correct. So you could continue to emotionally or mentally transition them? Is that that that’s what it sounds like, is accurate, correct? Yeah. I don’t think I would use the language to emotionally or mentally transitioning I would use, I would, I would still be able to practice that, which I believe is your question. But when you practice, would you be assisting them in their goal of transitioning, if that’s what they wanted? I assist young people and their parents in their goals that we reach collaboratively. And if this bill is passed, and medical interventions are no longer possible, I would not have that option in the state of Texas. So I would work on other mental health treatments to help, you know, try to relieve symptoms of dysphoria, anxiety, depression, those sorts of things, would you recommend that they maybe go out of state or do different things if they really if you thought that they really needed it? I think that would be a question that is better served by legal counsel than a psychologist for that sort of carried with this. That’s why you’re here today is to tell me what you do what you would do how you do like, if you believe someone that really needs help, would you recommend them? It wouldn’t be illegal in this bill. So would you do it? If it was not something that would put parents and young people at risk, and they were able to get and receive appropriate care elsewhere? That might be an option.” 

In just a moment, we’re gonna actually go to JC Natanz email that he sent out to all of his constituents, or at least the ones that are on his email list. And he posted it on social media and said, Here’s my defense for all of the attacks on me for my bill. Here’s what I want to focus on quickly from the clip. 

Representative Tinder who points out and again, this discussion happened numerous times the psychological transitioning of kids, not in this bill. I want to remind you of that, because we’re about to read what Jason jutaan told his constituents. 

The pro life issue is one that we debated for a long time in Texas. And luckily, it is largely completely illegal. There are little forms in which it could still be legal, but abortion is largely just outlawed. Okay, there. The only loophole basically that exists is a self induced abortion, if a mother says I want to kill my own child, she can legally do that in Texas. That’s an unfortunate provision in state law, it’s not a very loving thing to have for mothers involved, it’s actually I would say, a rather hateful policy to have to say mothers can kill their own kids. But that being said, it’s not what we’re discussing today, what we are discussing is the fact that many lawmakers in the past would have a couple of pro life votes on the record, but they would break every now and then on the issue of abortion, and they would vote once or twice or three times on that issue. And then during the primary season, when people would bring their pro choice votes, they would always say, this person’s lying. 

I voted for this pro life bill. And you’re gonna see that same tactic used by Representative jutaan. Here. So let’s look at what his email says. The first thing I want to highlight is this question. It says I thought the Texas Legislature already banned child gender modification bills because people are saying what why did you vote this way? Here’s his answer. He says yes, that happened. 

This session, Senate Bill 14 Prohibited gender modification surgeries for children, treatments to change hormones and put parameters around mental health counseling services. And we’re actually going to get to Stan Kitzman is our response because he has a similar thing that he said, here’s what you need to understand. There are not any parameters that prohibit a child psychologist from socially transitioning a kid. I look forward to JC jutaan, further expounding upon his little sentence there. I’m sure his staff read the whole bill and said, Well, maybe this one sentence applies to this one. We’ll use that to say that it applies to counsel Like it doesn’t apply to counseling. The legislation doesn’t apply to counseling. It doesn’t regulate counselors. That debate was had on the floor. 

Representative olive Houston said it didn’t actually address counseling, and Representative Alverson was there in the committee when this psychologist said this doesn’t apply to me? Yes, it doesn’t apply to you and Tom aalverson voted with Tony Tinder Holt to say, hey, it would be good to restrict this, since we know it’s gonna keep happening. Let’s go to the next thing. He said. Would this failed amendment do anything beyond what SB 14 did? Now, again, the amendment that JC jutaan voted for said that if money is taxpayer money is going to go to a child hospital, they need to not socially transition kids, which they can do. 

According to him, No, is the answer. Now that is a lie. And the reason I say it’s a lie, and not a half truth or miss true, is because it did, in fact, do something more. Because under current state law, I don’t know, let’s just make this clear. Under current state law, money can go from the state government to any hospital, irregardless of the transgender psychological services, they provide children. 

This amendment would have said for this pot of money, it can only go as long as you’re not doing those services. So the statement that no, this does nothing that SB 14 did, is out right false clear as day. It says the language the amendment would have provided zero additional protections for kids beyond those provided an SB 40. Just flat out false. Let’s go to the next thing. His email said. This is actually how he started it, which I think is so funny. Was HB 1898. A gender modification bill? The answer JC jutaan says is no it was not. This is such a lazy response from representative jutaan. 

And the reason I would say that is because, again, if I said, Hey, I’m gonna give all of these women’s health clinics $100 million on these criteria, and somebody said, Hey, I’m gonna add an amendment on that criteria. I’m gonna say, a women’s health clinic that provides these services cannot receive this money. If they provide abortions, this was done every single session in the Texas budget. 

Now, no one ever said, Well, I’m voting against that amendment. And it’s not a pro life amendment because the budget is not a pro life bill. They said yes, when money is going to an institution, and you restrict what that money, not only what the money can get used for, see, this is the other difference that you have to understand. 

See, for a while Planned Parenthood will come out and say, we don’t use any taxpayer money to provide abortions. And what they were doing was they were taking all the taxpayer money, and they were using it to do everything, but pay specifically for the abortion. And they would raise private money from other people and use that or have the person pay a nominal fee and abort their child for them. And not to mention the fact that all of the taxpayer money was what was being used to actually make sure the Planned Parenthood could be there and survive as an institution. 

This statement is again, a distraction. Well, because the bill didn’t say this is a transgender Bill, you can’t possibly in any way restrict the funds from going to institutions that are abusing children in this manner. last statement that he made in his email. What about counseling services. This is what JC says, When a child has such significant mental health concerns that they need to be treated in a hospital that can often include counseling services, these kids will often have multiple issues impacting their mental health, including depression. 

It is possible some of these kids are also struggling with gender dysphoria, and we want them to receive appropriate counseling. However, SB 14 already puts parameters around these counseling services to ensure the child is receiving appropriate care and not being encouraged to change their gender. 

Guys, that is not a true statement. And I’m going to challenge Representative Tom Allah person, Representative JC jutaan, Representative Stan Kitzman, any of the other Republicans. The only reason I mentioned Tom aalverson is because he’s the author of SB 14, and all of the 11 Republicans that voted for this, if any of you can point me to how SB 14 already puts parameters around these counseling services to ensure the child is receiving appropriate care and not being encouraged to change their gender. I welcome your response. 

Gladly, you can come on this show and give the response. You can do it yourself. And I will broadcast to prove that statement. Because I’ve read SB 14, I read it when it came out of the Senate. I read the introduced version. I read the amended version on the Senate, I read the version that got re amended back to a stronger bill. I read the version that was considered in the House Committee. I read the version that was debated on the House floor. Now one sentence in that bill does what JC jutaan says is done for counseling services. 

And this is be on desperate to write such a statement. It’s irresponsible. And it’s, it’s not even like we can have an honest dialogue about this issue. But instead, they’ve just gone to straight up gaslighting where there’s going to write whatever they want to write about the bill. 

That being said, let’s go to Stan Kitzman ‘s email. So Representative Kitzman, also wrote an email to one of his constituents who emailed him having read our write up and watched our show and said, Representative Kitzman, please let me know what you think about this. It’s interesting, because I got emails and texts from people saying, Oh, I actually met with Stan Kitzman, in a town hall. And I wouldn’t ask him about this issue. And I asked him here, and I asked him there. So I appreciate all of the followers and listeners to the show. 

I appreciate those of you who took our write up on this issue and emailed it to your friends and family in these different communities and said, Hey, what is this about? Because that is clearly made its way back to these legislators to the point that they feel compelled to actually respond. Here’s what’s troubling. 

So Stan Kitzman email I will say, is much worse than Jason Tetons email. Now, Jason, John’s email, as you heard me describe as pretty bad. Okay, I’m not gonna have as much time to read state Kitzman ziebell. But I do want to break down a couple things. He says, first of all, he says SB 14 did pass, including provisions prohibiting therapies and procedures to transition a child’s gender before they reach adulthood. Again, including prohibiting therapies. No, it did not. This is not a this is not saying that the things SB 14 Did were not good. 

But they didn’t stop the therapy. And Stan Kitzman is decided, well, the only way to get out of this sucker is to say I voted to do it, whether the bill did it or not. You heard in the clip, this therapist, it doesn’t restrict me, I will continue providing these services. But that’s okay. So that is just the outright false statement. The representatives think it’s what makes.  

Here’s another thing he says, Let’s go to the next thing. And I actually think that this is really worth focusing in on because this is almost when he backtracks from what he just said, so realize the first time and he made was, I don’t know, this has nothing to do with anything because none of these therapies can exists. If none of these therapies can exist, you need to understand this, it means that Tony tinderbox amendment wouldn’t do anything. 

That’s what it means. Because if the therapies are outlawed, then if Tony tinderbox says no child hospital can get this money, if they’re psychologically transitioning kids, then you know what the right answer would be. We aren’t psychologically transitioning kids, that’s illegal. It’s the same thing. Jason jutaan said, Jason concept, well, we do still do want to make sure that children get health care for their gender dysphoria. Yeah. Do you know what healthy psychological treatment for gender dysphoria is encouraging this beautifully created female, who was created by her Creator as female, male and female, He created them Regenesis the right way to encourage these people, and to not hate them, is to actually tell them that you were wonderfully made a female or a male. 

And then to encourage them to psychologically into that. And what we know is that before these radical transgender ideas came, 90 to 95% of children who had gender dysphoria, stopped having it after puberty. That’s the thing that nobody wants to talk about, in every instance, prior to the Dutch protocol coming into being in the transgender movement, 90 to 95% of children’s dysphoria, left after puberty, that’s why the movement is hell bent on stopping the puberty. And that’s why they want to get to him earlier, because they have to change this child’s mind. 

Stan Kitzman, wants to close in this way. Here’s what he says. I fully appreciate the complexities surrounding healthcare and medical practices for our children. My vote was not a dismissal of the dangers of this. But kids are on the verge of suicide of severe mental illness to get help, we need to make sure they get help fastest. He basically says that is exactly what HP at 98 did. Okay. And then he says the amendment would have killed the bill. And it would have taken away the services that kids need and then this is the last thing he says so you kind of broad brushstrokes it. 

And by the way, I understand when he says the amendment would have killed the bill. What he’s saying is the amendment, if it passed would have kept all this money from going to these hospitals because the hospitals are socially transitioned and the kids that I just told you is illegal. Children shouldn’t go without this help just because the children’s hospital they visit happens to have woke administration. 

I want you to think about what Steve Kitzman just said, Hey, we shouldn’t keep this money from these children’s hospitals just because their administration hires a bunch of psychologists that are going to start trying to convince a two year old boy, that that boy is a girl, a psychologist that will sit down with that two year old boy’s parents and say, Listen to me, you’re either going to jump on board the train of the sexual revolution with me and try to convince Tommy, he’s a girl, or he’s going to kill himself. 

That is the lie that they tell these parents. You’ve heard it a lot. But I’ll remind you, here’s what they tell them. They sit down and they say, Mom, Dad, would you your son, Tommy was born a boy, would you rather have a living girl or a dead boy? Would you rather have a living daughter or a dead son, because if you insist on trying to encourage Tommy in his own biological sex, and that his gender coincides with that, and he should be taught and encouraged and love to live in that if you do that, you need and are thought of thought, you’re going to kill him, his blood will be on your hands. 

It’s the same language Dan Kitzman uses, He literally says I didn’t let the blood of these kids on my hands. Therefore I had to vote for the bill and fund the social transitioning. Because here’s how it works. If we give all this taxpayer money to all these institutions, and say, we don’t really care what else you’re doing with these kids, then we are complicit in the activity. That’s what I believe. That’s what a lot of constituents of these representatives believes. And that’s why they’re getting asked these questions. 

Their defense falls short, their defense is inaccurate. It’s very unfortunate to see how desperate these members are being. But the truth is, this is a discussion we should have. And there are people who will disagree with my perspective on this issue that can do so in a rational, rational and reasonable way. Stan, Kitson and JC jutaan are not those individuals. 

When we come back, we’re going to have a discussion with Joe Hi, who’s somebody I met, because he wrote a piece contending with some of the things that I have said about representative Darby and all these other representatives, we’re just going to talk about that a little bit and also the work he’s doing in West Texas, some of the differences that are coming, the future legislative battles that are occurring, when it comes to rural republicans, democrats and different policies that they will often see eye to eye on that are even going to be discussed this fall. So I look forward to that discussion when we come back. 

Joe Hyde is the publisher of San Angelo live which is pretty much the premier news station in the city of San Angelo drew Darby, one of the state representatives that is among the 11 that I wrote about and talked about on the show of course was became a topic of discussion in St. Angelo the article that we talked about and so Joe investigated it wrote a piece for himself and I’m not going to dissect it He’s been kind enough to come here in studio and actually talk about it, but he did during that say that some of the things that I said were not accurate that he felt like I was saying that voting for the tender Holt amendment was akin to supporting transgender surgeries and so I read the piece called him up asked him if he wanted to come on the show he was kind enough to come here today so Joe thank you so much for joining us 

No Don’t kill me you know i mean I’m I’m just I’m just a country bumpkin San Angelo in this big city studios. You know so before we get into the article specifically just tell people quickly what St. Angelo live is, um, San Angelo live is an online news platform, a local internet only news platform. We have podcasts. We got a daily video kind of similar to this video. We don’t have the ceiling. It’s not there you go, because we’re out in the country. And we cover primarily Tom Green County, and the Concho Valley there’s five counties around it. News, high school sports, high school football spread coming up is real big. We have an audience that the county has 120,000 people and we have an audience of 80,000 a month just in the county. Wow. I guess worldwide was about 500,000 unique users a month so it’s it’s substantial. We reach into Abilene, Lubbock, Midland, Odessa, a lot of Dallas and I 35 corridor. 

Yep, too. So you and I talked on the phone privately I tried to do that when people disagree with anything that. 

I say and it was pretty, it was pretty manly of you to call me. You know. So I got this call from this Matt, or from Luke, who’s Luke. So I wanted to reach out and I know that we’ve had some discussions since. But I want to give you an opportunity to specifically kind of address your concerns with what we’ve said so far. 

In the news business. I know because I faced the same thing you do. You walk into a room and you have you have a variety of swords to follow on. You have picked the most strangest swords of all things to send the ball on with this HB at 98. I saw it as a process thing, it’s it was not a it was not a ideological I’m for or against training the kids, you know, in the big picture. I saw it as a process argument. The other thing is, you understand out in the rural counties, you know, a rural areas of Texas, it’s not like, you know, the woodlands. It’s not like Arlington, Texas. It’s people love their state reps. They love their county judge, you know, they, they support them. They are in our situation. I know I’ve known drew Darby for a number of probably 20 years. I know what he’s about. I know what he’s, you know, he’s not afraid to say I voted this way. Because. so I called him actually I texted him. I said, Hey, what’s up with you transgender kids? And he said, Oh, that’s scorecard, you know, and so we talked a lot about the process and what had happened and why he voted that way. And you know, we have Shannon children’s, with Shannon Women’s and Children’s Hospital. Yeah, I think a bigger problem in the counties today, in these rural areas, and probably in the cities too. But I’m not an urban guy anymore. Right. I moved out to Houston so I’m not urban guy anymore. But the big problem is our jails are full 20 You know, if you talk to our county sheriff, he’ll tell you our jail has 25% of its residents in the jail have some kind of mental health disorder, the cost of drugging, you know, the drugs that go in for mental health is in Tom Green County used to be about 17,000 a month, we’ve gotten it down to about eight because of some some really tight management. So mental health is a big deal for us. And we have rivercrest Hospital, which is overflowing. And so anytime you can get money for mental health and the rural areas, it’s important, you know, particularly to the operators of these of these various medical institutions. 

Can I ask you a question? So the reading of the tender hold amendment literally says, we still want all this money to go to all these hospitals, as long as they are not providing mental health care that is socially transitioning kids. I’m so so I want to. I am open to the argument that says rural hospitals need mental health care funding, our jail system has largely become mental health care for adults. Now this again, these were focused on children’s hospitals, not all but with children, surely they become adults. Well, eventually they do become adults, right? And unfortunately, if they go into a hospital where they are told, Hey, four year old kid, you can be more you can be I’m a girl, I actually think that that is pushing them further into mentally 

I agree with you 100%. I agree. 

So the tinder hold amendment and I want to get to some specific arguments you said it was more process oriented right now. Well, the the HB 1898 process or tender halt amendment was a missile God that was going to kill it. 

So how is it gonna kill it? 

I don’t know. I’m not a state legislator. Yes, that’s right. And I think I My point is, as on the media side of things, it’s incumbent upon us to be able to say, explain to me how it was going to kill it because it doesn’t make what you’re telling me is that a majority of the Texas House doesn’t want grant programs if they’re going to restrict the funding state institution of course drew Darby doesn’t either but you know, we come out with this and all sudden I have people coming to me and go what’s up with Drew Darby training the kids? Yes, you know, and so, so it was, I guess a little bit of hyperbole. Okay, so I had to you know, get to the bottom of so once and find out that the Darby supported the three anti transgender bills SB 14, I guess it’s 15 and 12. 

Yeah, the sports one well, then there’s I mean, they’re kind of mixing a couple others but then the the drag show bill and the the surgery and puberty blocker Bay, right? Yes, and no, the drag show one was particularly pertinent to us because we just had a drag show. Yeah, children in San Angelo, Texas. Yes, that in San Angelo, Texas, wherever and drag shows, and we have people who are defending it to their death. 

I imagine if Drew Darby voted against that bill, but he voted for the surgery bill. And then when he was attacked on the, you know, on the drag show, Bill, he said, Hey, why are these people saying I’m pro trans? I voted against the surgeries, you would, you would probably say You know, you voted against these surgeries, but you voted for this drag show, but he wasn’t that the same thing. But he was consistent. He voted against the three Trent anti transgender bills. That’s fine. And then his argument is HB 1888 was a process the deal gender halt through missile at it. We you know, I agreed with the House leadership, because you know, Darby is like an old school guy. He’s gonna He’s gonna work with the leadership, it doesn’t matter who the leadership is, sometimes leadership won’t work with him. Yeah, the previous leadership didn’t want to work with him, right? Yep. But he’s a process guy. And that’s just the way he is he looks at ways to solve problems for his constituents for his house. 

I want to move on to another issue. So we’ll make this the last question. But I think that I mean, the point you’re trying to make, which I just see very differently, is basically, as long as you vote for the bills that are specific to transgender kids, you can vote against every amendment that is going to stop the transgender and your children. And I think that that, again, is not how we’ve handled the gun issue. It’s not how we’ve handled the life issue. It’s not how we’ve handled the immigration issue. If you voted for illegal immigration, via amendment or for illegal immigration, or for you know, gun control via amendment, we wouldn’t say, Oh, well, you’re pro gun, as long as you vote for all the bills that are specific to guns. And so it seems to me like the argument that says an amendment is not the same, I think it’s worth pointing out and I’ll let you close on this, because I want you to have the last word and we’ll move on to something else is that I want our listeners and viewers to know that if you pass a bill, the words in that bill go into law, and they have the full effect of law, if you pass an amendment on a bill, those words go into law, and have the full effect of law. So they are both exactly the same regarding the effectiveness of those words, becoming law and then having power. And so I do think that when these longtime politicians truedark has been in for a very long time, they can sometimes literally just forget that both of these are going to stop something or let something happen. The Democrats understand this. That’s why they’re constantly amending bills, and sometimes they’re allowed to pass those amendments, and those get into law. So the argument that says that, oh, as long as you vote for the three transgender bills, you can vote for, you know, transgender and kids via amendment, I think, vote for that. 

But here’s the bottom line. I’m gonna go ahead and close this out at the end of this whole debate on HB 8098. That House vote it was 128. And sick. They had six no votes on 128 people in the house. That’s Republicans and Democrats voted to pass it. So it didn’t matter. At the end, it didn’t matter if that amendment was in there or not. Now, maybe it would have mattered if the amendment was in there. Maybe the Democrats when they voted for it, because they always wanted some pets, right. 

They want to transgender, the kids? 

A lot of them do. Yeah. So they would vote against it, if it if it had the kids from it, and so on. And so I don’t think they knew how many people would vote for it or against it. I don’t think they whipped it. I really don’t. Just looking at the house, the floor debate was very cursory. And it looks like they were just slamming through a whole bunch of bills that day. Right. And so I don’t think that I think Darby was worried about the thing that passing not that I agree with the other argument, why don’t we take that money and give us more type property property tax relief? Yeah, you know, but you know, legislatures are gonna legislate, they’re gonna they’re gonna pass out these little, you know, grant programs and things like that. That’s the way it’s gonna be. It’s gonna be I want Tom Green County, I want district 70 House districts to suddenly have that money for our hospitals because our jails are 25% mental illness. 

So one of the other issues that is going to come up probably in the month of October, we’re going to have a very contentious debate here in Austin regarding school choice. parental rights, basically, you know, over 85% of Republicans, including those in rural Texas have said, they want a program where the Money Follows the child and the parents directions. So the parent says, you’re going to this school, I want you to go to this school, we’re moving and then a certain amount of money, a lot of that child goes and this gets called school choice, parental rights, vouchers, all bunch of other things. This is an issue where the Democrat Party and the teacher unions often find alliances with some rural Republicans, you being all ruled out appropriate. Well, no, definitely not all real Republicans. I mean, there’s quite a few out there. I know that Dustin burrows out of Lubbock has voted for school, Joyce Robertson metro area. Well, that’s not rural. Shelby Slauson, Stephenville. She’s definitely a rural state representative. Yeah. Brian Harrison, who’s south? I mean, it is I would say that your statement all rural is probably more accurate like six years ago, but today, rural Republicans are definitely divided on the issue. But where I will agree with you is that all of the Republicans I know that do oppose it are in rural Texas. So 100% of the opposition comes from rural Texas and the Republican Party in the Republican Party, and well, every rural state representatives Pretty much a Republican except for one or two. You’re right. And so, if you take rural Republicans, they are somewhat split on the issue. In fact, Stan Kitzman, who I was not, I kind of criticized pretty heavily he voted for school choice multiple times. It represents a rural area of Texas. So again, really, Republicans are split, but all of the opposition comes from these rural Republicans. Tell us why you think that’s the case. 

Have you ever seen the movie or the TV show Friday Night Lights? Yes. Okay. Particularly the TV show. I know it was I’ve not seen the TV shops in the movie. The TV show was filmed in Pflugerville. So it’s not necessarily like, you know, totally rule. Yep. But it depicts a real town. These small towns, Robert Lee Christoval, wall, Texas. Sterling city, Erie County. We’re going into high school football season, so I’m buying up on the names. So northern Texas, like the snore, Broncos. Iran is not Iran, it’s Iran. But anyway, all these schools are all these towns are defined by their schools. And they’re further defined by their front porch, which is their football program. If you take away funding from these rural schools, a lot of them on a pretty shaky ground because what we’re seeing right now is we’re seeing a little bit of a migration from these small rural areas. Because we no longer need ranchers. We know the Ag work is getting more mechanical, mechanized, the a lot of a lot of the ranch lands turned into hunting you know, some rich law firm in Houston buys a bunch of land out in Sanderson Texas. And next thing you know, we don’t have any ranches. Right? We just have hunting grounds. So a lot of these towns are are shrinking. So the school district unless they have an oil well or two out there, the school districts are under pressure. Financially, the the voucher system is what we’re really worried about, I think, I think if you look at Tom Green County, which is St. Angelo area there, Concho Valley, we really do have school choice. For example, I live in the Christoval School District, which is Crystal was a little town south of St. Angelo, my three kids all went to crystal ball, my youngest daughter wanted God, she could get a better chance to go into Texas a&m If she went to San Angelo Central. So her sophomore years we put her in Sanjose didn’t cost us a dime. Yes, chose what school we want to go. If you want to go to Christoval, you want to go to great creek or you want to go to Wal used to apply, and you go and it’s you know, it’s de facto school choice out there. So there’s no, there’s no need for it. Now I understand. And I understand Katy, Texas has eight high schools. So one high school might be better than the other. I want my kid to go the best high school I understand that. Or my high school may have this high school might have a principal who’s, you know, demon worshiper? I don’t want to be in this hospital. And is this this kick deal. So I want my I want to be able to take my kid out of there and put it in private school or something like that. And I don’t want my property taxes to go to paying for this. Yeah, I understand. I understand those arguments. But you rip it around, rip it out of these these rural communities. And you’re going to tear up some fabric out there. 

The the bill in the Senate, the past that was opposed by these rural schools basically said, if the parents leave now, by the way, I always think that one of the easiest push backs to the idea that they don’t need it, if you don’t need it, then no one’s going to leave, right. So the argument that says, hey, if you stick 10,000 parents, you don’t really need this, it means that 10,000 parents have no intention of leaving. If there was a program that was an ESA, you’re not talking to 10,000 parents, you’re talking a couple of 1000. Okay, but 5000 3000 1100, right, if you tell me, there’s 100 parents in here, and there’s a monopolistic system that guarantees us the funding from the government, and they can only come here and if you say, it’s like basically saying, Hey, this is like the Hotel California like, look, we don’t need a way to leave the hotel. None of them want to leave anyways. Okay, well, why don’t you just give it to him and see how many leaves now if they do leave, it meant you need them. Now, the child can only leave if the parent says there’s a better education somewhere else. So we I would argue that if they leave if one parent leaves, then evidently there was a need because the parents care far more about their child’s education than any education system ever would private public charter, anything. The other point that I want to make is that you kind of pointed out was, the Senate passed a bill that said, if the child leaves, we are going to pay that school district $10,000 a year to cover not educating that kid. So like these, these schools are going to say operate there. Do you remember a couple of years ago this thing called Avatar? Yep. Remember that? When they did away with avatar? Yeah, they almost ripped up and destroyed some school districts out in West Texas, because that funding was going to be ripped away from them. And they were not, you know, so it was not a good thing. I don’t think given a rural school. $10,000 per kid is a sustained Bull public policy sustainable for a kid. They’re not educated. It’s not sustainable. It’s stupid. What do you mean it’s not sustainable, and we were already taxed to death, they still argued that they were going to run out of money. Like they’re arguing they’re going to run out of money, even when you’re paying them to not educate the kid that leaves they say, Well, we’re still gonna run out, I’m taking sustainable from a state my taxing policy, think about think about what we just went through with these property tax, the property valuations going up, and things like that. We have a problem with sustainable, sustainably financing public education. 

The bill said that they would have it for a number of years and then ultimately stopped getting the funding. Yeah. And the point was that no school, you have a school district that says, I need $10,000 A year for the next four years to not educate this kid and then it’s still going to be a problem because five years from now he’s gonna be going somewhere else. 

Why? Why are we taxing the guy in Katy, Texas to pay for the pay for the kid who’s not an Christoval? School? That’s an argument for school choice, not against against it, because what you’re doing is you’re increasing the cost of public education to play to pay for this voucher thing now? Well, no, no way. 

I want to I want to push back on that for a second. Because the reality is that we already have a system in Tom Green County, we’re far more people are paying taxes into the system, then you’re getting educated. We’re already do we are already taxing everybody to then educate these few kids. And then we’re saying parents get no say 

they do. And Tom Green County, they do. 

They do if they want to stay within the monopolistic system just for a different name. 

We have a charter school, you could go to a charter school, but most of them have waiting lists. There are millions of kids that are trying to get in Georgia school. I don’t think on waiting, 

I will say we have this. This is a macro economic situation where you’ll see what school choice if you start giving out vouchers, we have two main primary high schools in the San Angelo ISD. We have Lakeview High School, which is a foray. We have San Angelo Central, which is the sixth day it’s kind of like the banner leader of the town. Well, we also have a charter school called TLCA. And TLCA is grown pretty big. Their headquarters in Arlington now. But the ELCA is now caught on fire, where they grabbed their students from Lakeview. And this is something that you don’t see reported in the news. But Lake View is getting drained. It’s kind of like a bank brain drain out of Lake View into TLCA. Lake. This is a situation where you say when you see drained, you’re referring to parents deciding they can get a better attitude compared to parents are saying my kid can get a better education. And I wouldn’t say that’s draining, I would just say like parents, once they have an option are choosing something else. By the way, this is when this is but my point is you just made the argument that said they don’t really need the options. And now you’re talking about the fact that once this other option came up, these parents were fleeing to another school. It took a while you said drink. I didn’t say drink. But I would say one school that was drained. And you know, the other problem is, let’s say you’re a really good high school football receiver, guess what, you’re probably going to end up at Central. So the football team like you suffers because of that. But anyway, this is the way all competition works, though. Whenever you put in competition, there are some people who aren’t doing competition. 

Let’s say let’s say we do have your school choice, we have all these little startup private facilities join it, everyone’s going to those the real competitive ones, you know, you’re not you don’t have to let it where everyone in. So where is the kid who is quadriplegic who has learning disabilities? Where are they going to end up they’re not going to be able to go to you know, rich guys, private school at exactly $1,000 a semester, they’re gonna stay at San Angelo Central. And so now you’re gonna say, well, with all that with all your low, your student body, this special needs, you need to compete with all these smartest kids in the county? I don’t think that’s I mean, there needs to be some kind of controls on that. 

So I think I would point out that at the start of your defense, or opposition to the policy, you said, everyone here is fine. They don’t need this. Right. Now you’re saying, well, actually, if we do it, all these people are going to go so much better if they went? Okay, which one? Is it? Are they going to leave? Are they all going to stay? Because if they’re going to stay and they don’t need it, then the policy and program wouldn’t be bad to have? I think they probably would stay out on it. Am I think in Katy, Texas, you’re gonna drink at high school? 

Yep. I think what I would say is that.

I’ve just showed examples of how a school choice situation can take away students from when High School, San Angelo ISD has a crisis with like, they need to dress it and we haven’t talked about it in the news. I’ve written about it. But there is a crisis there. They need to figure out how to fix that. And I don’t know how I don’t know what the answer is. 

I want to close with this. The people who have argued for parental empowerment have done so because they primarily believe that the parents should have the ability. Some will decide to choose small schools, some will go to charter schools, some will stay at the public school. And ultimately we know that there’s a responsibility we have to make sure that our education is world class. We haven’t seen any of the dire predictions of the The anti parent empowerment school choice movement come true in the other states where it’s been implemented. Iowa has a lot of rural areas, Arizona has a lot of rural areas, we don’t see any of the rural schools in Florida, it is not the case that once you get out of the city, every one every school district is drained of money and doesn’t function. 

So look at is Indianapolis, Indiana, Indiana has has a reasonable first, I guess, punch into subsidized school choices. Basically we’re giving vouchers. And the means tested, it may it was a very small thing. They this came out this legislative session in Indiana, and they expanded it to about 50,000 families, or 50,000 school children are eligible for they went from like 10,000 or 50,000. Now, if you want to explore it, I say that’s why you do it, you don’t go out with this one size fits all, because the last thing I want is a meet my tax dollars, send an $8,000 to some rich parent in Highland Park Dallas to send their kid to Catholic school, I don’t want to pay for that. I really don’t that makes me kind of angry. That’s kind of anti conservative. But if we can, if we start out small with some means tested in various areas, we probably can figure out some problems. Because we do have a problem and that parents don’t trust the public school system. There is a crisis there. And I think that’s something that we need, from the bigger area. How do we fix this lack of trust in the public school system, or in the public education system? And that’s, that’s really what we’re, we’re both on that game? 

Yeah, I think a huge step in the right direction to giving parents trust, and I’ll close with this is that they will trust the system that is okay, if they go somewhere else. And when you have a policy set in place that says all of you have to be here. But by the way, you should trust us, we really are doing what’s best for your kids. It tells them I’m not sure what you’re all doing. But clearly you don’t trust me. So I’m not sure I’m gonna trust you a system where the parent has the freedom to go means every single student and parent that are there at that school have chosen to be there, which also means that they’re even more invested both in the public charter private option. Joe, thank you for coming on. And thank you for being willing to discuss our differences on both of these issues. And thanks for the work that you’re doing in San Angelo. 

Well, thank you. It’s been a pleasure coming out here to Austin. 

Yeah, absolutely. 

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