Anti-maskers. Anti-school closings. Anti-vaxxers. Anti-something-vaguely-lumped-under-critical-race-theory.
If it seems as if these folks are all actually the same people coming back with new signage every couple of months, join me as we take a look at Moms For Liberty.
MFL was launched at the beginning of 2021 by two Florida women, both with school board experience.
Tina Descovitch ran for Brevard County School Board in 2016, with a signature issue of her opposition to Common Core. Descovitch ran on two decades in business and a degree in Communications, as well as serving on the executive staff of a US Army Commanding General. She won that election overwhelmingly, taking 48% of the vote in a primary election field of four. Then she lost in 2020. She stayed active in local school politics; after a big dustup over LGBTQ+ policy in Brevard County, she was mailed an envelope full of poop.
The co-founder is Tiffany Justice, who won a school board seat in Indian River County in 2016. In 2018, the Indian River chapter of the NAACP asked the board to rein her in; she was accused of dominating African American Achievement Cor Committee Meetings and in those meetings violating board policy and open meetings laws. She was a reported victim of cyber-bullying by a district employee. As a board member she was agitating by October of 2020 for a mask-optional policy for students in the district, which earned her some attention from Parental Rights Florida, the wing of yet another of these groups, and I'm not going down that rabbit hole other than to note that the Parental Rights national board president is James Mason from the Homeschool Legal Defense Association and the board includes Grover Norquist and John Rosemond. Justice is no longer a member of the Indian River board.
Justice also stayed active in her district, post-board. Justice in particular has some big feelings about mask wearing, demanding some exceptions be made by the school for her son and her. Justice also wanted to be allowed to stop into her son's classroom without the 24 hour notice required by district policy.
The two launched their new group in January of this year in their home counties, agitating about mask wearing and getting school buildings re-opened. At some point, they decided to go national. Their big pitch has been parental grievance. From a profile in February:“The balance of power in education has dramatically shifted away from parents and communities to unions and bureaucrats,” said Descovich.
“Moms for Liberty is fighting to restore the role of primary decision maker for children back to parents by helping them organize and amplify their voices.”