Executive Director Timothy Head: Faith and Freedom Coalition Focuses on Life, Marriage, Traditional Family, and Religious Liberty

Executive Director Timothy Head: Faith and Freedom Coalition Focuses on Life, Marriage, Traditional Family, and Religious Liberty

Live from Music Row, Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed the National Executive Director of the Faith and Freedom Coalition Timothy Head to the newsmaker line to discuss their four key issues going forward in 2023.

Leahy: We are joined on our newsmaker line right now by our very good friend Timothy Head, national executive director of the Faith and Freedom Coalition. Good morning, Tim. Thanks so much for joining us.

Head: And good morning to you. How are things in Nashville today?

Leahy: Things in Nashville are great. You’re based down in Georgia. How are things in Georgia today?

Head: Well, it’s a little chilly, but that’s because we enjoy actual four seasons here. So not complaining. And we’ll start queuing up for the Masters here in probably just a few weeks.

Leahy: Are you a golf fan?

Head: I am, and I’m a golf enthusiast. I am reluctant to ever even call myself a true golfer, but we’ll leave that for another day.

Leahy: Yes, the Masters is quite an event down there. Let’s talk about the Faith and Freedom Coalition. You’ve been the executive director for some time. Ralph Reed set it up, what, 15 years ago or so?

Head: The end of this year is year 14. We’re almost turning the quarter into year 15. I’ve been here about eight and a half years and, you know, seeing a lot of, first of all, growth across the country, but then also a lot of really great successes on either the political side or the legislative side.

Sometimes we like to say that we’re working on public policy from a biblical worldview in a constitutional framework. And I think more and more we’re seeing good things happening across the country on that front.

Leahy: Yes, it’s interesting because the founders of our constitutional republic and of our country mostly had a biblical worldview. Even those who were, I don’t know, Agnostic or Deists at the time. We’ve lost that, haven’t we, in the country?

Head: We’ve certainly lost that prevailing sentiment. So the remnants are absolutely still there. You still see a lot of it there in Nashville and in Tennessee. So I would say they’re probably on the state level.

There are about 39, 30, 31 states that I actually am pretty encouraged by the makeup of their either governorship or their state legislature. D.C. is another matter. That place is a bit of a foreign country of sorts these days.

Leahy: I’m guessing neither California nor New York is on that list of states in which you are encouraged.

Head: Surprisingly enough, they’re not. Michael. (Leahy laughs)

Leahy: No, not at all. And increasingly of late, Michigan looks to be along those lines as well. You got a Democrat governor now for the first time in 40 years. Democrats control both Houses of the state legislature. They are going in the wrong direction there in Michigan, it seems to me.

Head: That’s right. In recent years, I would say you’re right. Michigan is one that we’ve kind of lost some bearings there. But thankfully, I would say places like Missouri and Iowa, Ohio, and now Florida. And I’ll tell you whose next step on the list is North Carolina.

There actually are some states that are trending the correct way the right way. And then you got a couple of places like Michigan where we still have our work cut out for us there.

Leahy: Speaking of Iowa, we just launched The Iowa Star last week, kind of a special edition to focus on the upcoming year from today, Iowa Caucuses. The GOP will still be first in the nation, but not so much for the Democrats. Talk about the national agenda of the Faith and Freedom Coalition. What are your key focuses these days?

Head: On the policy front, the kind of classic four issues that drive a lot of so-called social conservatives are issues surrounding life, marriage, and traditional family, religious liberty, and for a lot of religious conservatives, the state of Israel. So those are four key issues that we work really around the clock on.

And then we also work a lot on issues related to education, to our justice system, human trafficking and supporting victims there, and then also to immigration, both restoring a rule of law and having a solid, sound border.

 But then also being able to deal with innocent people that are caught up in that web and making sure that religious minorities and vulnerable populations are seen to effectively. So we kind of work on eight or nine different issues pretty consistently, either on the federal level or on states across the country.

Leahy: On the education level, I look at our K-12 public education system, and I think it’s an absolute disaster. They’re not teaching kids to read or write or do arithmetic, but they are trying to indoctrinate them into various LGBTQ transgender, anti-American Ideologies.

It seems to me that a couple of states are doing pretty well, though, in pushing back, particularly as it relates to choice, parental choice, and vouchers. Arizona and Iowa seem to be leading the way. What are your thoughts on that and what other states do you think can follow in that direction?

Head: I think you’re hitting the nail on the head. I think that a bunch of people coming out of 2020, was a major wake-up call for a bunch of parents across the country. And frankly, even people who may not even have kids in school systems anymore, were like, wait, what is my kid having to learn in a Zoom class from home?

And they’re learning anything but reading, writing, and arithmetic. And so I would say West Virginia and Arizona were kind of the cutting edge. But now we’ve seen Iowa just in the last about three weeks, take a major surge in the right direction. Governor Kim Reynolds and the legislators there have done a great job, and as has the leadership in Utah, also doing great things.

I would say Florida, North Carolina, and Georgia have kind of taken a move in the direction of a kind of education savings accounts, which are a decent kind of alternative. But Texas is in the middle right now of probably the biggest and most hopeful, say, school choice move really in Texas’s history.

We’re seeing kind of good is begetting better on state fronts. You kind of see that vision and leadership tend to kind of stir one another on in issues like this. And so, really, over the next two years, I think we’re going to see a lot of major victories on this front.

Leahy: So this is interesting. I’d like to get your reaction to talking about leadership here in Tennessee. You’re probably aware of this. Speaker of the House Cam Sexton has proposed the idea that the state of Tennessee should tell the federal Department of Education that the $1.8 billion that they want to provide to the state, the federal government can take that money and put it where the sun doesn’t shine.

I suppose you could say, right. And they don’t want it because with money comes strings. Your thoughts on that bold proposal from the Speaker of the House Cam Sexton here in Tennessee?

Listen to today’s show highlights, including this interview:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to The Tennessee Star Reporwith Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Timothy Head” by Council on Criminal Justice. Background Photo “Church” by Pixabay.


Nashville Mayoral Candidate Natisha Brooks Outlines Her Agenda Items

Nashville Mayoral Candidate Natisha Brooks Outlines Her Agenda Items

Live from Music Row, Friday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed Nashville mayoral candidate Natisha Brooks in studio to discuss her stance on the Titans Stadium deal, reduction of Metro Council members, police support, education, and fixing the budget.

Leahy: We are in studio with the sartorially splendid Natisha Brooks. She’s running for mayor. Natishafornashville.org. That website will be up in a couple of days over the weekend. Natisha, are you ready for the big question?

Brooks: Yes, I’m ready.

Leahy: All of the experts tell us that to mount a successful campaign for mayor. The election is going to be in August. August 3rd.

Brooks: Correct.

Leahy: You need about $2 million.

Brooks: That is correct.

Leahy: Now, I looked at your financial reports from the time you were in for Congress. There were fewer zeros on that report.

Brooks: Yes.

Leahy: And so the question is, do you agree that will take $2 million to win?

Brooks: Oh, yes.

Leahy: You do?

Brooks: I already predict the outcome. Myself against Sharon Hurt. And if you don’t know who Sharon Hunt is, she’s going to play the color card. We’re going to do the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. We’re going to play the character card. Bring character back to Nashville.

Not your color. We’re not vying to try to be the first black mayor. We’re trying to bring character, not color. Character back to Nashville. Folks. Natishafornashville.org, we will raise the money.

We have to raise at least $2 million to help take this city back. Natishafornashville.org. Hit that donate button. Donors, PACs, I’m coming for you. We love your prayers, but, Michael, we need your cash.

Leahy: (Chuckles) Love your prayers but need your cash.

Brooks: Need your cash.

Leahy: This is why people love Natisha. Just right to the point.

Brooks: We need your cash.

Leahy: And you think you can raise $2 million? It’s a long order. Color me a little skeptical on the ability to raise $2 million from scratch.

Brooks: Catholics, Methodists, we believe. We’ve got faith. We’re going to raise it. I need you to hit Natishafornashville.org. I need your cash. We need your cash. We got to get out there, get ahead. By the way, some of you will wake up Monday morning and see signs all over Nashville. Ms. Brooks is already ready to put at least $100,000 of my own money into the race.

Leahy: Now, let me ask the next question. You know, there’s this little deal out there where I’ve talked about it, and I think it’s a terrible deal. It’s where the Tennessee Titans have basically stuck their hand out and said, Tennessee state taxpayers give us some money.

And the state of Tennessee inexplicably is giving them half a billion dollars. And then Metro Nashville is doing all sorts of things to leverage their special taxes and privileges that have been given to them by the state legislature to use that for bonding to raise another $750 million.

And then the NFL supposedly is going to give $800 million. But it doesn’t look like there’s really a lot of it actually coming out of the pockets of the family that owns the Titans. It’s a $2.2 billion deal. As mayor, do you oppose or favor this stadium deal?

Brooks: Currently, right now, Michael, we oppose it, and I’m going to tell you why. One, if someone would put a concrete plan in front of Natisha of how we’re going to pay for the stadium, and that’s why you need to vote Natisha for Nashville for mayor, we’re the only ones that are going to be able to work with the Tennessee State Legislature.

I’m going to be up there, and we’re going to have to have a talk because, Michael, if you looked at the plan so far, where we are parking, Michael, with all this money? Where the stadium is going to be, where are we going to park and why do we have to pay for it?

And I tell people all this all the time. You all know I transplanted from Texas. I say, you can Texas my Tennessee and Tennessee my Texas. But, hey, I would love to sit down and talk with the owner a little bit. I know she’s got a new general manager over there, but right now the answer is no. I am not in favor of the new Titan Stadium currently, right now.

Leahy: What I would suggest is when you say, why don’t you finance it entirely Amy Adams-Strunk? We think it’s a great idea if you pay for it.

Brooks: Yes.

Leahy: Not the city citizens and the voters of Nashville, Davidson County.

Brooks: And the 40-member Metro Council. Just 30 seconds on that. I am in favor of squeezing that down.

Leahy: To 20.

Brooks: You got it!

Leahy: It’s interesting to me; it’s been framed as a sort of punishment, supposedly.

Brooks: Retaliation.

Leahy: Retaliation for not hosting the Republican National Committee convention here in 2024. To me, I mean, I’ve lived in this area for 31 years. When I first moved here, and I heard they had a 40-member Metro council, I said, how do they ever get anything done?

Brooks: Exactly. Let’s just say, Michael, we win. Can you imagine us with 40 members? I don’t want to use the word against because Natisha is going to work, but how can we work with a 40-member council? And how many conservatives do we have down there? We got Swope.

Leahy: Three or four.

Brooks: Three or four. What are we going to do, Michael?

Leahy: Okay. Speaking of what are we going to do? So you’re on the record. Your goal is to raise $2 million.

Brooks: That is correct.

Leahy: You are opposed to the stadium deal.

Brooks: Correct.

Leahy: You favor reducing the council size from 40 to 20.

Brooks: Yes.

Leahy: What are your other agenda items?

Brooks: One, the number one is we have to talk about, everyone knows this. I’m the three C’s. Christian, conservative, constitutionalist. That’s very important to me.

I need you to understand that constituents. But the very first thing I want everyone to know is I am pro-blue. We’re going to take 30 seconds to talk about Memphis. I know Chief Drake myself, personally. He’s a great guy.

Leahy: John Drake here. The police chief in Nashville.

Brooks: Yes. And he’s been here a long time.

Leahy: Long time.

Brooks: Hey, I was in a car accident the other day, Michael.

Leahy: Are you okay?

Brooks: I’m okay a little bit, but I’m not okay that it took 45 minutes for an officer to come to the scene. And just so that you know, is an off-duty officer that got out of his car to help me. We need to talk and sit down about our police. They’re not going anywhere. If we’re going to do a Titan Stadium, let’s increase our police force.

I’m strongly pro-blue. Very pro blue. So that’s one thing. The other thing I want to get something done about this homelessness. Somebody said, well, Miss Brooks, don’t go left on us. I’m not going left, folks. I’m not going left. But one thing I do have to do is have some empathy about folks being on the streets.

Because of our 34 percent tax increase, we got folks that are not one check away from the streets, they’re almost under, just under away from the streets. And just because you’re rich and you live in a $2 million home or $3 million home, I don’t believe in punishing the rich.

Hey, I support the rich. I congratulate the rich. But just because we’re rich or you’ve got money doesn’t mean you need to be taxed more. So, as always, let’s get this budget going. I’m in education.

Let’s talk about the school board. My main focus on the budget with the school board is talking about that curriculum. As you know, Governor DeSantis in Florida did away with the AP Black American History, and I know a lot of African Americans are fired up about it.

Leahy: And the reason is that the last quarter of it was basically left-wing ideology.

Brooks: That is correct.

Leahy: They’ve resubmitted it, by the way.

Brooks: That’s right.

Leahy: And apparently he’s going to prove the resubmission without the left-wing junk.

Brooks: I saw that. But we’ve got to work with education.

Leahy: The problem with education is all the mayor does is say, oh, we approve your budget.

Brooks: Exactly.

Leahy: And then they can spend whatever they want. Are you going to change that?

Brooks: We’re going to change that.

Listen to today’s show highlights, including this interview:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to The Tennessee Star Reporwith Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Natisha Brooks” by Natisha Brooks. Background Photo “Tennessee Capitol” by Ichabod. CC BY-SA 3.0.


All-Star Panelist JC Bowman Comments on Tennessee Principals’ Trip to Louisville, Penny Schwinn, and School Security

All-Star Panelist JC Bowman Comments on Tennessee Principals’ Trip to Louisville, Penny Schwinn, and School Security

Live from Music Row, Friday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed all-star panelist and the CEO of Professional Educators of Tennessee JC Bowman in studio to discuss the $500,000 Tennessee principal trip to Louisville, Kentucky, Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn, and school safety.

Leahy: We welcome to our microphones right now, our very good friend for many years, the CEO of Professional Educators of Tennessee. This is the alternative to the left-wing teachers’ unions, Mr. JC. Bowman. Good morning, JC.

Bowman: Good morning, Michael! How are you doing today?

Leahy: A little bit cold out there.

Bowman: Well, in Fairbanks, they consider this day at the beach.

Leahy: A day at the beach. We have an important announcement to make. You and I have been friends for many, many years. You’ve been on the program before. On Monday, it will mark six years of The Tennessee Star operating here in the state of Tennessee. It’s a long time.

Bowman: Oh, it’s great, too.

Leahy: And you are one of our first advertisers at the Professional Educators of Tennessee. And we thank you for helping launch us. We’ve been friends for a long time. You’ve been on the program for a long time. Ladies and gentlemen, officially today, Mr. JC. Bowman is an all-star panelist on The Tennessee Star Report.

Bowman: (Cheers) I’m excited! I get access to the coffee pot now.

Leahy: You get access to the coffee pot, and you get our undying gratitude. Our newest all-star panelist is an expert on education. There’s a story that we and our education writer, TC Weber wrote, a great writer and an expert on education in Tennessee, particularly in Metro Nashville.

He had a very interesting story about a boondoggle that Metro Nashville school folks were on. About half a million bucks to send folks up for training in Louisville. Tell us a little bit about that.

Bowman: Yes, a couple of things. First off, let’s talk about TC, for a second. TC is a tremendous writer. You’re right; he has got guts. And he’s been visited by Homeland Security and everybody else for some of the articles he writes. He’s got great courage to write. Interesting guy.

This is the only place you’ll find those stories in The Tennessee Star. They’re taking all the principals, and I think the assistant principals, anybody that is a principal, you’re going to Kentucky to study and talk about public strategy for public education out of the public eye in Kentucky.

Nashville is a destination city. We got buildings everywhere. We’ve got seven universities that would give you space. Why Kentucky? I don’t know. What are we stealing from Kentucky?

Leahy: Boondoggle. (Laughs) I mean, come on.

Bowman: Think about what half a million dollars could go for in our schools just for kids and academics. And listen, this is what got them in trouble under Sean Joseph’s regime. And again, Weber called that out. And that’s what I think is amazing about it. Nobody else covered that story, and it’s well known they put it out that they’re doing it, and they have no shame.

If it was some like, magic bullet, you could go up there. One of the things I think we got to really look at, Michael, is the whole travel regime for everywhere we go. It’s like we go to vacations. We’re out to a conference. And if COVID taught us anything, you could do it online.

Why do we have to go on all these trips with state officials on down? Every once in a while, I understand it. I get it. I traveled in Florida for some of the things, but I hated to travel. It wasn’t something I looked forward to. But they planned these trips out. We need to really take a hard look.

Leahy: Speaking of education travel, we have a milk carton here, and it has a picture on it. A missing person. Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn. Has anybody seen her?

Bowman: Yes. She’s come back. I got in trouble for that, by the way. They called me out on that one. And they said, make sure we say something good about her. They let me know that she had some health issues, and that’s why she was out.

But of course, I think that she continued to travel places. So I think that’s the thing. I did see she made the rounds at the Capitol up there, and I did run into her at the Capitol, so I’ll give her that much.

Leahy: But her leadership is dreadful, and she’s not enforcing the anti-CRT bill that’s out there. The challenges that were made in Williamson County, she’s doing nothing with it.

Bowman: We don’t enforce any laws. The funny thing, Michael, is that we have to write new laws. We were working on teacher assault last year. It’s one of my pet projects. And as I started digging into the law, it was already on the books in three different places. We just don’t enforce the laws that are already on the books.

Leahy: Did Penny Schwinn say something nice about me, or did her staff ask you to say something nice about me?

Bowman: I was talking to one of her staff members. Yes. Absolutely. Not to say something nice, but mention the department. And I have been very polite and very kind. I do like, Grow Your Own Program. That’s a good program. I’ve said this before. It is not the be all, end all of everything. It’s a nice thing in the gun.

Leahy: We’ve invited Penny Schwinn to come on the program and to defend her record. She’s not shown up.

Bowman: No, and she won’t.

Leahy: Why not? How can we say nice things about her if she doesn’t show up? (Laughs) 

Bowman: Well, that’s the thing.

Leahy: There’s nothing nice to say about her, in my view.

Bowman: Well, Governor Lee doesn’t show up.

Leahy: Who? Who? (Laughs) We’ve invited him. He’s been governor. He was elected in 2018.

Bowman: But he’s preparing for State of the State.

Leahy: That’s coming up.

Bowman: I do know a little bit, I think, because I do work on that a little bit. One of the things I’m really pushing and advocating for is school security. And I’m like; we have to protect kids. We have to protect teachers. And so I’m trying to make sure that they do that, but I know that they’re going to address it somewhere. I think school security is an issue.

Leahy: Yes, it definitely is an issue.

Bowman: They didn’t fund SROs. That’s part of the problem.

Leahy: Tell our audience what an SRO is.

Bowman: You got two groups of people got SROs, School Resource Officers, which fall under the purview and the authority and are following law enforcement. They are officers on school grounds. And you have this thing called SSOs, which, I’m just being honest…

Leahy: What is an SSO?

Bowman: That is a School Safety Officer that is the equivalent of a mall cop. And so they are run by the school, and they answer to the director of schools. And so there’s a real difference between the two. I want my school to be represented by an SRO so if there’s an incident; law enforcement can handle it right there.

Leahy: Have you noticed the recent reports about the performance of schools at the third-grade level? And now there’s this big bill about the retention bill that passed last year and is scheduled to go into effect this year. A lot of teachers are complaining about the bill. As I understand it, you have this TN Ready test that third graders take.

And unless you show you’re proficient in reading and writing primarily, you will be either held back for a year or have to go to summer school. I’ve seen reports that as many as two-thirds of students here in Tennessee are not proficient at their third-grade level. How is this going to play out?

Listen to today’s show highlights, including this interview:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to The Tennessee Star Reporwith Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “J. C. Bowman” by J. C. Bowman. Photo “Penny Schwinn” by Tennessee Board of Regents. Background Photo “Classroom” by Wokandapix.


Carol Swain on Teacher Union Greed, DEI, and the Suffering of America’s Students

Carol Swain on Teacher Union Greed, DEI, and the Suffering of America’s Students

Live from Music Row, Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed all-star panelist Carol Swain in studio to discuss her recent op-ed which tackles the truth about teachers’ unions greed, DEI, and induced suffering of America’s students.

Leahy: In studio with us, our very good friend, all-star panelist Carol Swain. Carol, there you go again. You wrote a piece at Fox News about education. I love the headline. Some people didn’t like it so much. This was published on Monday.

Here’s the headline: Teachers’ Unions Locked Kids out of Schools to Get More of Your Money, Not for Safety. Subtitle: Teachers’ Unions and Democrats Want to Perpetuate COVID Pandemic Forever. Carol, what kind of reaction have you gotten to that op-ed?

Swain: People who are supporters of teachers’ unions, don’t like it very much, but our children suffered tremendously. In fact, the 8th grade and math scores dropped eight points nationwide, and it varied by state.

But they have projected that these students will have a $70,000 lifetime loss in earnings and that the states where the affected children are, their economies will be affected, and that some of them will never recover.

Leahy: That’s the point, isn’t it? If you aren’t able by a certain age, and I think here the retention law here in Tennessee says third grade, I think that’s probably where you start running into very serious damage going forward in terms of your sense and simply your capability to reach a certain ceiling of intellectual thought.

If you can’t read and write by third grade, for instance, you’re just never going to get to the level that you need to be to be your most effective thinker and doer.

Swain: The disgrace is that the teachers’ unions did not rely on science. They pressed for more and more money. They got billions of dollars, supposedly for safety. They used it for DEI, they used it for salaries, and they used it for all kinds of things that had nothing to do with education.

And when experts were saying that children, their probability of catching COVID or spreading COVID were just minuscule, they still demanded that the schools be closed.

And so our children suffered not because of the science or the risk of COVID but because they had an agenda that had nothing to do with the children. It was a political agenda, not an educational agenda.

Leahy: Interestingly enough, there was an undercover video just released yesterday by Accuracy in Media. We covered it at our The Ohio Star news site. It was about a school system in Columbus, Ohio. And they got the executive director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, who knew that that was an important job in a school, but that’s what they have in Upper Arlington, Ohio.

The state legislature there said you’re not going to teach critical race theory. He basically undercover said, well, we’re going to teach whatever we want.

Swain: I mean, that’s what they do. And I guess yesterday in the early wee hours of the morning, I was on Fox and Friends First.

Leahy: By the way, when you say kind of with a smile, (Swain chuckles) I can relate to this, Carol, you say in the early wee hours of the morning. Just describe what time you have to get up and what time your hit is on Fox and Friends First.

Swain: My hit was 4:15 a.m., which means I have to be camera ready sitting in front of my computer. And so I had to get up at 3:30 am to get dressed and put on my makeup. I get dressed from the top-up Mike. (Leahy chuckles) Well, that’s enough about that.

But we talked about Governor Youngkin in Virginia. There were seven Fairfax County schools that withheld notification to kids that were National Merit Scholars that…

Leahy: They had, they won, and they get a scholarship.

Swain: So they were not able to have that honor and to be able to put it on the college applications.

Leahy: That will help your acceptance rate if you’re a National Merit Scholar.

Swain: And you can get hundreds of thousands of dollars in scholarship money as well. But the superintendent, who happens to be a black woman, I don’t remember her name, where she has this thing, equity. What was her quote? Basically, equity means everyone’s going to have the same outcome.

Even the kids that are just struggling, they’re going to have the same outcome. And one of the reasons why they didn’t report the scores is that they didn’t want to make the kids feel bad that had not been as successful. When they got caught, some of the administrators said, well, it was an error, but they did it two years in a row.

Leahy: It wasn’t an error, it was intentional.

Swain: And that school system paid $450,000 to a DEI person. And Michael, most of the DEI consultants and experts, for one thing, there’s not a real license, and there are majors of fields that end in studies.

We used to laugh and say, well, where were these people get a job? Well, they became your DEI officers, and they’re pulling down six-figure salaries. And it’s really taken away from education.

Leahy: To promote, really, things that are anti-American.

Swain: They’re not promoting education.

Leahy: That’s the truth.

Swain: And here’s the thing, are they harmed the high achieving students without benefiting the ones that were less accomplished or less hard-working or had less ability.

And so no one benefited. And during my years of being a professor, National Merit Scholars have been people from different backgrounds, social classes, and as well as races, and ethnicity. So racial and ethnic minorities, certainly in Fairfax County, were disadvantaged along with white children.

Leahy: And to your point, in this undercover video in Columbus, Ohio that we have up at The Ohio Star and The Tennessee Star, the executive director there, Matthew Boaz, said the following quote there’s more than one way to skin a cat if you pass a bill banning critical race theory. But if you don’t cover programming and extracurricular activities, the message will get out there. Oops!

Swain: They’re doing it in math, science…

Leahy: Everywhere.

Swain: They know exactly what they are doing.

Listen to today’s show highlights, including this interview:

– – –

Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to The Tennessee Star Reporwith Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Carol Swain” by Carol Swain.




Tennessee House of Representatives Candidate for District 35 William Slater Talks About His Passion for Education, Background, and Why He’s Running

Tennessee House of Representatives Candidate for District 35 William Slater Talks About His Passion for Education, Background, and Why He’s Running

Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed District 35 candidate for the Tennessee House of Representatives William Slater in-studio to talk about his education, background, and why he’s running for public office.

Leahy: We are joined in-studio by the official guest host of The Tennessee Star Report, Aaron Gulbransen, and a new friend, Mr. William Slater, who is a candidate for the Republican nomination for the Tennessee House of Representatives in the 35th district. Good morning, Mr. Slater.

Slater: Good morning, Michael. Thank you for having me. I appreciate it.

Leahy: First, tell us where is the 35th district? What are the boundaries of that district?

Slater: Yes, Yeah, so the 35th district is part of Sumner County. Starts in Hendersonville, runs all the way up through Bethpage and includes all of Gallatin, and then continues on out to Trousdale County.

Leahy: Who currently represents that district?

Slater: Right now it’s Terri Lynn Weaver and it’s the 40th district. Her district has shifted east, and so now it’s the 35th district. It’s a new district. An open seat.

Leahy: Open seat. Now, who are you, and why are you running for the Tennessee House of Representatives?

Slater: I’m William Slater, and I am running because I’m passionate about education, business, and public safety. Lived in Sumner County since 1996, my wife and I met and married in Florida and moved there with our four kids 26 years ago. Love Sumner County, love Tennessee, and just excited to represent the folks of Sumner and Trousdale County.

Leahy: What is your professional background?

Slater: Education and business. I’ve been a professional educator since getting out of college in 1985.

Leahy: Where did you go to college?

Slater: I went up to a small private Christian college up just outside of Chicago.

Leahy: What’s the name of it?

Slater: Hyles-Anderson College. And then went on to the University of South Florida and then finished up here at Nashville School of Law.

Leahy: Nashville School of Law. Do you have a JD from the national law?

Slater: I do, yes. Never intended to practice law, but love education, passionate about it and wanted to teach school law, and that’s what I do. I’m at Welch College, which is a conservative Christian college in Sumner County, and I teach graduate students there.

Leahy: What courses do you teach?

Slater: I teach school law, teach special education law, and then I teach faith and ethics in education.

Leahy: Tell us about Welch College.

Slater: Welch was founded in 1942, is the Free Will Baptist Bible College here in Nashville, [originally] down on the west end in Richland Avenue area, and moved out to Summer County in 2017. And that’s when I came on board. Been there five years.

Leahy: And how many students are there at Welch College?

Slater: About 450 students, and that includes both on-campus students, which we’re the only residential campus in Sumner County. Of course, we have commuting students and then our graduate students as well.

Leahy: Is it accredited?

Slater: Yes.

Leahy: Accredited college.

Slater: That’s correct.

Leahy: And are you a full professor there?

Slater: I’m a dean. One of the deans there. I’m the dean of adult and online studies. And then, as I mentioned, I teach in our graduate program. I teach in the Master of Arts in Teaching program.

Leahy: Now, tell us a little bit about your teaching background.

Slater: So I started out teaching in Christian schools and my favorite thing to teach in my teaching background is English and history. So that’s what I was trained for, and taught a lot of history, American government. And then of course, when I got to Tennessee, Tennessee history, world history, those kinds of things.

Leahy: When we come back, we’ll have more with William Slater, who’s running for the Republican nomination in the 35th district of the Tennessee House of Representatives. This is The Tennessee Star Report. I’m Michael Patrick Leahy.

Listen to the interview:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.