On the home page today, I have a big piece on how Southlake, Texas, won its fight over the schools, which should be used as a model all over the country:
Opponents were motivated by a belief the stakes couldn’t get higher. “It’s the primo district,” [Tim] O’Hare says of Southlake, called the Carroll Independent School District. “And our concern was we knew everybody was watching us and, if it passed here, it was going to take off in the public schools like wildfire.”
Cam Bryan, who ended up running for school board on the conservative slate, says everyone realized “if they can take Southlake, they can take any place.”
Of course, they didn’t. It’s worth delving in detail into Southlake’s successful pushback because it should be a model for conservative parents confronted by the similar situations around the country. (The organizers can be reached at email@example.com.)
The Southlake opposition was spontaneous and genuinely grassroots, but not the least bit amateurish. While there’s no substitute for having inflamed public opinion on your side, it has to be appropriately channeled. The Southlake opposition was unified, was carefully organized, and never took its eye off the ball.
It was also fearless, remaining outspoken and resolute despite harassment and efforts to get its supporters fired by their employers.
In short, its stupendous victory wasn’t something that just happened. As Leigh Wambsganss puts it, “The one who works the hardest wins, and we had an army.”