Update on UN Disabilities Treaty

Please be aware of the new court hearing!!!

Dear FHE (Families for Home Education) Members and Friends,

 Another US Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the UN Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities is set for next Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2013. Please continue to call your US Senators urging them to oppose the UNCRPD treaty. For detailed information see Michael Farris’ Report on yesterday’s hearing below.

 We must not be “weary in well doing”. The opposition is determined to push this treaty to ratification.

 Senator Roy Blunt– (202) 224-5721

Senator Claire McCaskill- (202)224-6154

Thank you for your continued support, calls and prayers for this very important issue,

Al and Sheryl Schmidt for the Families for Home Education Board

FHE Assistant Executive Director/

FHE Region 6 East Director

417-859-7908

1-877-696-6343 ext. 62

fheregion6east@gmail.com

www.fhe-mo.org

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Report from Yesterday’s Senate Hearing on the 

UN Disabilities Treaty—Politics of Personal Destruction

Yesterday, I testified against the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) before the U.S. Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee. During this hearing, it became clear that the Democrat senators on the committee weren’t interested in hearing how this dangerous United Nations treaty could harm our freedoms. Instead, this hearing showed that the senators leading the charge to ratify this treaty have decided to take a page from the far left’s playbook and will stop at nothing to vilify and destroy anyone who has concerns with the UNCRPD.

Dr. Susan Yoshihara from C-FAM and I were the only witnesses against the UNCRPD. There were five witnesses in support of the treaty, and one neutral witness who generally supported the treaty but thought more RUDs (written reservations) were needed. Two of the witnesses, Senator Mark Kirk (IL) and Kelly Ayotte (NH), are sitting senators.

False Trail

After we gave our introductory remarks, the personal attacks began. Senator Barbara Boxer (CA), the second most senior Democrat senator on the committee, asked me if HSLDA or ParentalRights.org has ever raised money during our battle against UN control over children and families with disabilities. Instead of asking her if she had ever raised money during her campaigns for U.S. Senate, or whether any of the pro-UNCRPD organizations raise money for their fight, I explained that HSLDA is funded by you, our members. ParentalRights.org is funded solely by donations.

Senator Boxer’s attack, however, was not really against me or HSLDA. It was against you, and every other homeschool family who has ever supported HSLDA because you believe in our mission to defend the God-given right of parents, not faceless bureaucrats, to care for and educate our children. Senator Boxer thinks that your membership in HSLDA and your support of our critical work to defend homeschooling, support widows and single parents through the Home School Foundation, and the work of ParentalRights.org to pass a constitutional amendment makes you an evil special interest that must be vilified and defeated.

Next, Senator Dick Durbin (IL), another senior Democrat on the committee, falsely argued that HSLDA’s position is that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is the threat to homeschool freedom. The fact is that HSLDA strongly supports the ADA and other laws advancing the freedom and dignity of persons with disabilities which our democratically elected representatives have passed. What’s more, the UNCRPD would actually threaten parental rights which are enshrined in the IDEA. I explained to him that it was the UNCRPD, not the ADA, which was the threat. He ignored me and persisted in stating that HSLDA believes the ADA was the threat. Logic teachers call this a straw man argument, which is used by people who do not wish to debate the merits of an issue.

And finally, near the end of the hearing, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (NJ) said, by way of dismissing HSLDA’s legal arguments about how the UNCRPD is binding under international law, “I appreciate that you have an LLM from London which is as I understand from a distance learning course….” The room packed with supporters of the treaty burst out in rude and loud laughter, forcing Chairman Menendez to gavel the room to order.

Avoiding the Facts

Again, while this was a personal attack aimed at me intended to sideline my arguments, Chairman Menendez was admitting that he had no response to HSLDA’s arguments about the dangers of the UNCRPD and international law. He showed that he will resort to petty, silly, and personal attacks rather than substance.

This battle is about one thing: who will make the laws for the United States? Our democratically elected representatives? Or UN treaty law? Homeschoolers know that they cannot trust the United Nations to protect the freedom of loving parents to raise their children. And any honest American understands that the UN cannot be trusted to preserve and protect our nation’s sovereignty and fundamental freedoms which have been bought with the blood of patriots through the centuries.

It is ironic that President Obama, Secretary Kerry, and the other politicians who are promising us that the UNCRPD will not threaten parental rights, homeschool freedom, and our nation’s sovereignty, are the same politicians who promised us that if we like our healthcare insurance, we can keep it. They’ve been proven wrong. We cannot let them win this time when our children’s future is on the line.

This is a tough battle. The senators who are trying to ram the UNCRPD down our nation’s throat will stop at nothing to destroy anyone who stands in their way. Please pray. And please call your senators and urge them to reject this UN treaty. Your calls made the difference last time. By the grace of God, they will make the difference this time.

Contact Your Senators

You can reach your senators by calling the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121, by using our legislative toolbox to type your address and find their contact info, or by using HSLDA’s emailing tool to send a prewritten letter to your senators by filling out your information online.

Please call right now and keep calling, and please also forward this email to your friends. You can visit HSLDA’s action page here to learn more about the CRPD, and you can read the text of the CRPD here.

Standing with you for Liberty,

http://images.response.hslda.org/EloquaImages/clients/HSLDA/%7b1c9e6bc2-3d26-408b-a453-e28e7390fc89%7d_Mike_Farris_Signature.bmp

 Michael P. Farris, JD, LLM

Chairman, HSLDA

P.S. The Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee will hold another hearing on the UNCRPD on Tuesday, November 12. We do not yet know when it will come up for a vote in the Committee, but it will likely be very soon. We will send out more information as soon as we have more details. Finally, even though Senator Boxer doesn’t want you supporting the battle against the UNCRPD and for U.S. sovereignty, you can donate if you wish.

 

Protect Your Family: We greatly value you and your support—it is a privilege to serve you. Thank you for all you do for freedom! If you or someone you know is not a member of HSLDA, will you consider taking a moment today to join or recommend us? Your support enables us to defend individual families threatened by government officials and protect homeschooling freedom for all. Join now >>

 

Protection for Parental Right bill update/UN Disability Treaty up for vote again!!!

Dear Readers,
If you are reading this and like myself, have or know of a child with disabilities please stay alert and help keep this bill from getting passed.  If this goes into effect then those with disabled children will no longer have a right to decide the best care for their loved one.  All decisions will be made by those who are deemed authorized!

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Dear FHE members and friends,

Thank you for your help on getting HB 513, Protections for Parental Rights, passed in the Missouri House and sent to the Missouri Senate. HJR 26, a Parental Rights Amendment, also passed the final Missouri House vote this week and was sent to the Missouri Senate.

 We know there have been several very pressing and important issues facing not only the homeschool community, but also the general public. We would admonish you to “be not weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.”

 This brings us to yet another pressing issue: the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Treaty (UNCRPD). We understand from HSLDA that it is on the move again. HSLDA is asking that we call and e-mail our US Senators urging them to oppose the UNCRPD. Then pass this message on to family and friends.

 Senator Roy Blunt– (202) 224-5721

Senator Claire McCaskill– (202)224-6154

 See the HSLDA message below for more details.

 Thank you for your faithfulness to stand with us on these issues,

UN Disabilities Treaty on the Move

Contact Members of U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee!

Mike Farris
HSLDA Founder and Chairman

We are hearing from multiple sources that the U.S. Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee is gearing up to hold hearings on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The plan is to hold the hearings sometime next month.

The Senate needs to hear from you immediately that this already defeated UN treaty must not be ratified by the U.S. Senate. The United States Senate must not surrender our domestic sovereignty and the care of children with disabilities to unelected, unaccountable UN bureaucrats. Parents know best how to care for their children with disabilities. U.S. law is the gold standard for ensuring that people with disabilities are protected and able to participate in all areas of U.S. society.

The U.S. Senate is in recess this week, which means that your senators are back in your state meeting with constituents. Please do three things:

1.    Call and email your two U.S. senators and urge them to oppose the UN CRPD. The Capitol Hill Switchboard is 202-224-3121begin_of_the_skype_highlighting skype-ie-addon-data://res/numbers_button_skype_logo.png202-224-3121 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting, and you can use this link to email your senators.

2.    Find out if there is a constituent meeting in your area, or see if you can visit your U.S. senators while they are on recess. You can visit HSLDA’s Legislative Toolbox, click on your state, and then click on your senators to find their personal webpage.

3.    Please share this article with your friends and family, and educate them about the dangers that this UN treaty poses to parental rights, homeschool freedom, and our nation’s sovereignty.

Your message to your senators can be as simple as the following:

“I urge you to oppose the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This treaty surrenders U.S. sovereignty to unelected UN bureaucrats and will threaten parental care of children with disabilities. Our nation already has laws to protect Americans with disabilities. This treaty is unnecessary and will hurt families by giving bureaucrats the power to decide what is in the best interests of a child with disabilities, not the child’s parents.”

To find out more about the CRPD please click here. To read the text of the CRPD please click here.

Thank you for joining with us in this battle to protect our children and our children’s future. You defeated this treaty last year. Standing together, we can defeat this treaty once again.

 

Calls needed to stop Common Core initiative!!!

Call Now to Stop Federal Takeover of Missouri Education

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

Powerful forces in Washington, D.C., are seeking to centralize control over education and dictate what children in America must learn—perhaps even homeschoolers. And they are doing it through an ingenious program called “Common Core State Standards.”

Federal control over education would mean that dominant groups could force-feed children exactly the doctrine and world view they want them to believe.

If they had been transparent and simply filed a bill in Congress to empower the federal government to control the content of education, a firestorm of criticism would have doomed it. But they were clever: they offered money to state bureaucrats to do “voluntarily” what they themselves could not do without generating a nationwide outcry.

The result is that 45 states-including Missouri—took the bait, gave up the right to choose what their children would learn, and promised to create a system that would require all public children to learn exactly the same things.

This could affect homeschoolers profoundly if it is not stopped. College admissions tests are already changing to submit to Common Core. The ability to enter college or get a scholarship could one day depend on having learned the Common Core. Getting a job or getting into the military could one day depend on learning the Common Core. Even some homeschool curriculum providers have announced that their books comply with Common Core!

Once all public school children are learning exactly the same things nationwide, the path is laid to force private schools and homeschools to comply. After all, why should some non-conformists be allowed to teach their kids anything they want when “everyone” is learning Common Core? It is not unthinkable that your freedom to teach your children what you know they should learn could vanish—or it could be penalized beyond anything we might now imagine.

The federalization of education content would be a huge step toward turning the clock back and ending homeschool freedom.

And if federalization is successful, the seemingly unquenchable lust for centralization will certainly set its eyes on the next target: internationalization. And in the international arena, it’s perfectly acceptable to completely forbid homeschooling: just ask the Konrad and Romeike families from Germany or the Johansson family from Sweden.

But in Missouri, there is hope for change! Two bills are pending in the Missouri Legislature that would extract the state from Common Core: SB 210 and HB 616. They need your help!

Action Requested

Please call your Missouri state senator and your representative right away. Keep in mind that state bureaucrats joined Common Core without any approval from the Missouri Legislature. Your lawmakers are not the bad guys! But they DO have the power to solve the problem.

The message to your state senator could be as simple as “Please vote YES on SB 210. Give Missouri back the right to choose its own educational destiny.”

The message to your state representative could be as simple as “Please vote YES on HB 616. Give Missouri back the right to choose its own educational destiny.” You should feel free to develop a message that is more personal using information from this e-lert or other sources. Since this affects all parents, it is not necessary to identify yourself as a homeschooler.

Also please call your two U.S. senators (Blunt and McCaskill). Iowa’s Senator Chuck Grassley is circulating a letter for U.S. senators to sign opposing the funding of a nationalized curriculum. Your message to Senators Blunt and McCaskill can be as simple as: “Please sign onto Senator Grassley’s letter urging Congress to defund the Common Core Curriculum Standards Initiative. The federal government should not be using taxpayer dollars to pressure the states into adopting educational goals and curriculum which should be decided by local parents, teachers, and schools.”

Contact Information

Use this link to find your Missouri state senator and representative and their contact information.

Use the link below to get contact information for U.S. senators Blunt and McCaskill: Call 202 224-3121 or visit this page to get contact information for your U.S. senators.

Background

For an explanation of how Common Core got started, read this article by HSLDA’s Director of Federal Relations, Will Estrada.

“What if I told you that Obama’s education-policy reforms, arguably pushed through without the good graces of the law, were crippling children’s imagination, stifling their creativity and on the whole setting them up to become less moral, kind empathetic people?”Read the rest of this National Review article.

The Heritage Foundation believes Common Core decreases a student’s ability to develop analytical thinking.

This article by a former Assistant U.S. Secretary of Education under Clinton and Bush explains how federal money controlled the entire operation and how little input was received.

Implementation of Common Core in California means that bright 8th graders can no longer take Algebra I, because one set of Common Core standards is required for every grade. (California Education Code 60605.11(b)(3)). Massachusetts had to water down its math standards to comply with Common Core.

The College Board, owner of the SAT college admission test, is already changing the test to comply with Common Core.

This Cato article discusses the pressure to turn national education standards into federal education standards.

“The Common Core State Standards have no more legitimacy than the plans of your local village idiot to reform education.”

This Christian Post editorial asserts that “There is no evidence that the curriculum works, and it will destroy innovation amongst states.”

The left-leaning Brookings Institute says Common Core won’t improve the education kids get. Brookings says that neither the quality nor rigor of state standards is related to student achievement.

Although the Common Core is paraded as the work of states working together, the U.S. Department of Education is already jumping in.

In addition to an organization that controls the Common Core standards themselves, there is a group creating a national curriculum that implements the Common Core standards, and at least two groups are creating a national test that will test students on their knowledge of the Common Core standards.

A bill is pending in Iowa that will create a state panel to encourage businesses to give hiring preferences to students who earn a “certificate of competency” from their public school. While it’s difficult to tell if this is directly related to Common Core, it is a very troubling example of how state legislatures can link hiring preferences with certain preferred types of education. See p.33 starting at line 23.

Thank you for standing with us for freedom!

Sincerely Yours,
Scott A. Woodruff, Esq., Senior Counsel, HSLDA

 

Discussion on whether your children are yours or belong to the “community”?

Another homeschooler passed this video on…..

We have never invested as much in public education as we should have because we’ve always had a private notion of children: ‘your kid is yours and totally your responsibility'”. “We have to break through our private idea that kids belong to their parents or kids belong to their families and recognize that kids belong to whole communities.” ~Melissa Harris-Perry

Video of Ms. Perry:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=N3qtpdSQox0

While I understand that this woman truly believes what she is saying is for the ‘good’, it is a scary scary scary notion in the hands of the wrong people.
If you all have not gone to www.parentalrights.org and read on up on the Parental Rights Amendment, please do so.  This is a grassroots work to get an amendment added to our US Constitution that states that our children our OUR children (simply put).  The reason this is so important is that there is strong possibility that the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Treaty may be ratified.  If the United States ratifies this UN Treaty without the Parental Rights Amendment already in place, then (in a very simplified and scary scenario) your child has a right to take you to court if he/she doesn’t like a decision you made and the court will decide who is right and it takes raising your children out of your hands and into the court system.  If the UN Treaty is ratified to our US Constitution, the court system will make their decision based on that treaty.  This is a very simplified explanation.  PLEASE go to: Parental Rights Amendment: Understanding the Issue and read up on this whole thing. It is a very important parenting and homeschooling issue.
We must be diligent in keeping our Parental and Homeschooling Rights.

 

Senate Rejects Ratification of UN Disabilities Treaty!!!!

Please note the email below….  While at this time the treaty has not been passed, I would like to take the time to encourage you to enroll in HSLDA services, not only be aware and alert of changing laws and treaties but if you find yourself in a situation where you need legal help for your schooling needs or rights, they will assist you.  I pay a small monthly fee for their services should I ever need them or you can receive a homeschool discount on your annual membership price for being a part of a group in your area.

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service…
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Senate Rejects Ratification of UN Disabilities Treaty

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

Due to your calls, emails, and office visits, the Senate minority
stood strong and ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of
Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) was rejected by the U.S. Senate a
short time ago.

The CRPD, which would take away American sovereignty and threaten
parental rights, needed two-thirds of the Senate in order to pass.
Although it gained a majority of votes, it failed on a vote of 61-38.
This is a great victory for parental rights, homeschool freedom, and
children with special needs. The U.S. Senate rejected a treaty which
would have allowed UN bureaucrats to decide what is in the “best
interests” of children with disabilities, instead leaving those
decisions with parents and caregivers, which is what existing U.S. law
already requires. Visit http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=16434 to
find out why HSLDA opposed this treaty.

We encourage you to visit http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=16435 to
find out how your senators voted, and please send them an email of
thanks (this information will be posted in a few hours, but we wanted
to let you know this good news right now).

Yet despite this victory, the battle is not over.  This treaty and
other dangerous UN treaties can come up at any time. We must stay
informed and be ready at any moment to take action again.   Without a
Parental Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution which would
supersede these treaties, we are susceptible to these constant attacks
against our rights as Americans and the right the raise our children
how we see fit. You can find out more about the Parental Rights
Amendment at http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=16436 .

Thank you again to all of you who took action against this treaty and
special thanks to those of you in the Congressional Action Program
(CAP) who came out to Washington, D.C. to lobby senators against the
CRPD.

Sincerely,

J. Michael Smith
HSLDA President

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Phone: (540) 338-5600
Fax: (540) 338-2733
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Web: http://www.hslda.org

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Treaty vote extended to December 4th!!!

The following is from our friends at HSLDA. As a service to a sister organization, we are passing this information on to you as we received it. 

 

We have just received word that the U.S. Senate will hold a straight up-or-down vote on Tuesday, December 4, on whether or not the United States should ratify the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). If two-thirds of the senators present vote yes, the United States will ratify this UN treaty.

 

HSLDA has never opposed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). HSLDA has never opposed the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). But we oppose the CRPD for the simple principle that Americans should make the law for America. It is wrong for the United States to ratify a United Nations treaty that will give up our sovereignty to unelected, unaccountable UN bureaucrats.

 

We have been told that the pro-CRPD side is waging one of the most aggressive, organized lobbying campaigns ever. The U.S. State Department and Obama administration officials are pressuring individual senators to support the CRPD. It is crucial that senators on our side hear from you, your friends, your family, and from anyone who opposes giving the UN power over our nation, and over our precious children and family members who have disabilities.

 

Please call your two U.S. senators today, Monday, and Tuesday. You can reach them through the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121, or you can find your senators’ phone numbers by typing in your ZIP code here.

 

Senators Lee (UT), Toomey (PA), Paul (KY), and DeMint (SC) are leading the charge to stop the CRPD, so it is not necessary to call them. We are confident that the  other 32 Republican senatorswho opposed moving to debate on the CRPD on Monday will also vote against the treaty, but we believe that you should call them anyway to encourage them in the face of strong opposition.

 

Please give them some or all of this message:

 

“I urge you to oppose the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This treaty surrenders U.S. sovereignty to unelected UN bureaucrats and will threaten parental care of children with disabilities. Our nation already has laws to protect disabled Americans. This treaty is unnecessary and will hurt families. If the Senate ratifies this treaty, it would be the first time ever that the U.S. has ratified a treaty that obligates us to recognize economic, social, and cultural entitlements as rights under domestic law.”

 

Then, please forward this email to your friends and family and urge them to also call.Please also post this information on social media to help get the word out to every parent and freedom-loving person in America.

 

For more information on the dangers of this treaty please visit our CRPD page. There are three full business days left to defeat this treaty and preserve U.S. sovereignty and parental rights. Please keep calling. And please keep praying.

 

For Liberty,

 

Michael P. Farris, Esq., LL.M.
Founder and Chairman, HSLDA

 

More calls needed on the treaty and an update from yesterday’s vote

Senator Blunt 202-224-5721
Senator McCaskill 202-224-6154

“Please call them today. I know it seems daunting to call, but all you have to say is that you would like the Senator to vote NO against the UN disability treaty. They will then take down you zip code. It is a number game. The more people that call in the better. Please stand up for the disabled and American parental rights. The language in this treaty is frightening.”


Preliminary vote on the UN CRPD gives both hope and targets for more calls

Today the Senate took a preliminary vote on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The vote was on a “Motion to Proceed” which means that the Senate gave permission to begin debate to the treaty. As is often the case, this was a preliminary vote which tells us a great deal about the vote for final passage.

The vote was 61 to 36. Three Senators did not vote.

Every Democratic senator voted for the treaty—Blumenthal (D-CT) was absent and not voting.

The Republicans supplied several “Yes” votes for the Obama Administration on giving the UN some authority over America’s policies for disabled adults and children. The GOP senators supporting Obama’s UN push were: Ayotte (R-NH), Barrasso (R-WY), Brown (R-MA), Collins (R-ME), Hatch (R-UT), Lugar (R-IA), McCain (R-AZ), and Snowe (R-ME). Hatch was the biggest surprise in this group. Barrasso was a huge disappointment because of his supposedly conservative stance on issues, but his defection has been known for some time.

A good surprise was the Moran (R-KS) voted against the CRPD on this preliminary matter. Roberts (R-KS) and Kirk (R-IL) were absent.

I urge you all to send an EMAIL of thanks to the Republicans who voted against the CRPD. If your Senator is a Republican he voted against the CRPD unless mentioned specifically here.

I urge you all to call all of the other Senators yet again for their preliminary votes and urge them to change their mind and support the principle that Americans should make the law for America. While it is unlikely that Democrats will change their minds—they need to know that there is a price to pay for attacking American parents and giving away American self-government. Answering a couple more days of phone calls is a small price to pay for their decision to vote for the UN position.
Senator Reid has not yet filed the motion needed to take this bill to the next vote which will be for cloture. Thus, there will be two more votes before the treaty can be ratified. We do not know the timetable yet. Some delay til Thursday or Friday is likely.

We absolutely have to keep the pressure on.

But it is very important that you all send emails of thanks to the 36. The opposition will be urging their people to pour on the calls to these 36 hoping to move just two.

If we can keep at least 34, the treaty will be defeated.

Shore up the good guys with emails. Call the others to account with phone calls. Try calling their local offices for a change of pace.

Thanks so much. You are making a difference. The Senate leadership promised that this treaty would be ratified by July 26. Your calls are the reason we are still in the fight.

They need to change two votes to win. We need to keep up our defense of freedom because no one else will.