“Texas Freedom Network’s Leftwing Agenda Trying To Take Control of Social Studies Standards Again”
By Donna Garner

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[COMMENTS FROM DONNA GARNER:  Texas Freedom Network (TFN) has raised its ugly head once again, and the leftist Austin American-Stateman(AAS) is only too glad to perpetuate TFN’s leftist agenda.  Currently there are many Texans who are very concerned over CRT and the LGBTQ agenda; this agenda has poured into our students’ classrooms and libraries.  Below these comments, I have posted excerpts from my articles which lay out TFN’s historical background.

TFN’s roots are deeply grounded in LGBTQ, CRT, Obama’s Common Core, abortion, gender identity/puberty blocker drugs/surgeries. For many years, TFN has been involved in numerous attempts to destroy conservative content in our Texas curriculum standards (TEKS).

Besides Garner Golden Rule #1 (“Do not vote for any Democrat for any office because their party has been stolen by the leftists”), here is Garner Golden Rule #2:   “Never believe anything that TFN says and very little that the AAS reports.”

Before reading excerpts from my 9.6.09 article, please see the following excerpts from today’s Austin American Statesman. The AAS often quotes leftist Texas Freedom Network (TFN) as TFN attempts to defame Stephen Balch.  Balch is a nationally respected former professor and founder of the National Association of Scholars.

Mr. Balch has recently been chosen by the Texas State Board of Education members to serve as a content advisor for the revision of the Social Studies standards (TEKS). This committee will guide the wording of the Social Studies TEKS K-12.

TFN and AAS are casting aspersions on Stephen Balch because of his conservative views. (1.25.22 – “Scholar who called Biden election a 'literal coup' advising Texas social studies curriculum review” -- By Maria Mendez – Austin American-Statesman -- https://www.statesman.com/story/news/2022/01/25/stephen-balch-appointed-review-texas-social-studies-curriculum/9204721002/  ) Please see excerpts from the AAS 1.25.22 article posted further on down the page.



“Texas Freedom Network Exposed”

by Donna Garner


Excerpts from this article:

In the video [which has since been taken down], Kathy Miller, the president of Texas Freedom Network, was interviewed.  Texas Freedom Network (TFN) is a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization.  That means <TFN can (and does) lobby for legislation and participates in political campaigns and elections. TFN received $1.9 Million for its Education Fund between 2002-2007.

…New Social Studies standards [TEKS] are presently in the pipeline in Texas. These new Social Studies standards will lead to new textbooks.  Texas is the largest K-12 purchaser of textbooks in the U. S.  Therefore, whatever is put into Texas’ textbooks influences what is put into textbooks used in public schools throughout the country.

Social Studies textbooks have the power to indoctrinate students’ thinking, and leftwing political groups know this.  They want to control the way children think.  They want to rewrite history and de-emphasize the role of the historical documents upon which our nation is founded.  They want to implement political correctness into every Social Studies textbook in our nation’s schools.  

Texas Freedom Network is an aggressive, leftwing, political organization that is completely out of step with today’s parents who want their children to learn foundational skills that will help them to become well-informed leaders of tomorrow.  

TFN has a well-defined political/social agenda for our school children; and the purpose of TFN is to practice the politics of personal destruction on the conservative members of the Texas State Board of Education and anyone else who holds the same principled beliefs.

TFN staffers have never bothered to read an entire textbook, critique it, research the contents, list factual errors, and go through the laborious yet legitimate textbook adoption process. TFN prefers to hold press conferences, highlight statements in textbooks that are taken out of context, and steal the attention of the all-too-willing liberal media who then go out and spread misinformation and bias across the country. 

In recent years, TFN has lost the battle over the English / Language Arts / Reading standards. The ones passed by the majority of the elected SBOE members are much improved over the old ones and stress phonics, grammar, usage, spelling, penmanship, expository and persuasive writing, research writing, and the great pieces of literature along with their characteristics.

TFN also lost the battle over the new Science standards that will now require teachers to teach >all sides of scientific theories including the weaknesses of evolution.

After TFN suffered these resounding defeats with the SBOE, Kathy Miller decided to go across the street to the Texas Legislature where she found TFN board member, Rep. Donna Howard. 

Working with Rep. Howard, the ACLU Texas, Alliance for Clean Texas, Center for Public Policy Priorities, Equality Texas, NARAL Pro-Choice, Sierra Club, Stand Down Texas, TAPPA, Texas Impact, and The Texas Observer, TFN filed 15 anti-SBOE bills during the 2009 Legislative session.

…Because Texas Freedom Network has injected itself into decisions that impact Texas public school students, I need to ask parents: 

Do you want TFN (a leftwing, liberal organization that lobbies and participates in political campaigns) influencing the direction of your children’s textbooks?  Do you feel that TFN represents your views?  Do you think TFN genuinely wants what is best for your children; or is TFN simply following a politicized agenda that, if allowed to prevail, would do long-lasting damage to your children’s lives? 

To help you answer these questions, let me tell you about the people who are associated with TFN.

In 1995, TFN was founded by Cecile Richards, daughter of Texas' liberal Democrat Governor, Ann Richards.  Cecile is the president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America and still serves on the TFN Board of Directors.  Cecile was deputy chief of staff for Speaker Nancy Pelosi and worked with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU).  SEIU is closely associated with ACORN.

When Cecile left for Washington, D. C., Samantha Smoot took Cecile's place (1998). When Samantha left for Washington, D. C. in 2005, she went to work for the Human Rights Campaign, the largest homosexual organization in the country.  Dan Quinn (TFN's Communication Director) "outed himself" publicly in 2001.

TFN, Planned Parenthood, and the Human Rights Campaign work together as “triplet sisters.” 

[Kathy Miller became the head of TFN in 2004 and passed off the position to Val Benevidez  on 9.1.20.]

The Chair of the TFN Education Fund is Janis Pinelli, who gave campaign contributions to Obama, Hillary Clinton, Emily’s List, the Texas Democratic Party, and Rick Noriega for Governor.

Also on the TFN Education Board of Directors is Dale Linebarger who is treasurer.  He is the Senior Advisor to Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson.  This firm started collecting debts for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in 2006 after a generous lobbying effort of half a million dollars to pressure Congress to hire outside bill collectors instead of requiring the IRS staff to do the job more inexpensively (Business Week, 8.25.06).  Dale Linebarger made political contributions to Obama, Ruben Hinojosa, Al Franken, Lloyd A. Doggett, Ken Salazar, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and Border Health PAC.

Why does Border Health PAC sound familiar?  According to Texas Monthly (Aug. 2009), Border Health PAC gives politicians huge contributions “to order expensive medical procedures” and has come under scrutiny because of the New Yorker (June 2009) article that stated the costs of treating Medicare patients in McAllen are twice the national average. “The primary cause of McAllen’s extreme costs was, very simply, the across-the-board overuse of medicine.”  Dale Linebarger gave monthly contributions to Border Health PAC throughout 2008.

Rev. Dr. Larry Bethune is also on the TFN Board Education Board of Directors. He is the senior pastor of University Baptist Church (Austin, Texas). As stated on its website, UBC is sometimes “in conflict with the views of the wider religious community and secular society…in the 1990s it ordained a homosexual deacon.” Bethune has stated that he opposes “attempts to dilute, distort, or censor the teaching of evolution in biology textbooks.”

Also on the TFN Education Board of Directors is Diane Iresone (Clinical Social Worker) who has given political contributions to Obama, John Kerry, Lloyd A. Doggett, John Edwards, Emily’s List, Barbara Boxer, and Hillary Clinton.

Rebecca Lightsey is on the TFN Education Board of Directors and is an attorney and executive director of Texas Appleseed that focuses on social justice issues.  Lightsey worked on Governor Ann Richards’ staff and supported Democrat Rick Noriega for Governor of Texas.

Rhonda Gerson is the Chair of TFN and has given campaign contributions to Hillary Clinton, Democrat Senator Carl Levin, and Emily’s List. 

Texas Representative Donna Howard (Democrat) is a board member of TFN.  NARAL Pro-Choice has given Howard a 100% rating. Texas Eagle Forum gave Howard a rating of  8% in the 2009 legislative session. 

After reading this list of left-wing individuals who are involved with Texas Freedom Network, I hope the next time you hear Kathy Miller interviewed by the media, you will carefully “consider the source!”  She wants to demonize the people who represent traditional values and undercut their efforts to raise academic standards for our students.

<< snip >>


As of 9.8.14, these are the organizations supported by TFN:

Planned Parenthood; the Human Rights Campaign (largest homosexual organization in the U. S.); the ACLU Texas; Alliance for Clean Texas; People for the American Way; Center for Public Policy Priorities; Equality Texas; NARAL Pro-Choice; Sierra Club; Freedom From Religion Foundation; Stand Down Texas; Texas Association of Planned Parenthood Affiliates (TAPPA); Texas Impact; The Texas Observer; MECha (who wants to eliminate the border with Mexico entirely and honor Mexican revolutionary war hero Ernesto Zapata and Cuban revolutionary Che Guevara); the Center for Inquiry (CFI) who fought to make the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional.


1.25.22 – “Scholar who called Biden election a 'literal coup' advising Texas social studies curriculum review” – by Maria Mendez – Austin American-Statesman

Excerpts from this article:

Click Here

A conservative scholar who questioned the 2020 election results is helping the State Board of Education review social studies curriculum standards for public schools.

Stephen Balch, a former professor and founder of the National Association of Scholars, is serving as a content advisor for the revision of the standards that will guide social studies courses from kindergarten through 12th grade.

The Texas Freedom Network, a liberal group promoting religious freedom and education, is calling on the State Board of Education to withdraw Balch's appointment, citing his writings calling the 2020 election a "literal coup," among other things.

In an essay following President Joe Biden's election, Balch questioned the integrity of the results, as did former President Donald Trump and other Republicans who raised unfounded concerns of widespread voter fraud.

…Texas Freedom Network leaders said Balch's "conspiracy theories, inflammatory rhetoric and shocking contempt for our constitutional and democratic institutions make him unfit for this role."

Balch will serve on a panel of content advisors that provide feedback on the curriculum standards at the beginning and end of the review process

'Pure defamation'

Balch holds a doctorate in political science and championed the study of Western civilization at several universities, including Texas Tech.

He called Texas Freedom Network's statements "pure defamation" and said the views he expressed were "similar to those expressed by many other commentators and public officials…the purpose of the TEKS review in social studies and history is to enrich content knowledge in a serious and balanced way, and my service as a content advisor aims at promoting those ends, not debating the issues of the day," he added

Lopez said Texas Freedom Network also expects to express their concerns at the board's meetings this week, which begin Tuesday.