“If you don’t do what I say, I’ll take your lunch money.” You can imagine a bully saying that to a student in school. But you probably can’t imagine the federal government saying that to public schools. But that may happen.
The Biden administration’s Department of Food and Nutrition Service (an agency within the USDA) announced that it will strip funding for school lunches if the school does not adopt the administration’s transgender policies. This would require trans students the use of bathrooms, locker rooms, and showers.
As I’ve mentioned in previous commentaries, the Biden administration decided to change the definition of the word sex in Title IX. Federally funded educational institutions are prohibited from discrimination “on the basis of sex.” Without congressional authorization, the Biden bureaucrats now argue that sex means gender and gender identity.
Ian Prior is the Executive Director of Fights for Schools. He says the administration is holding schools hostage with school lunch money that helps feed 30 million students. “I honestly have no idea how providing food to children in schools is somehow connected to transgender policies.”
Of course, the connection doesn’t exist. The administration is merely using both a financial carrot and stick to advance a policy in the schools that would most likely be rejected by Congress.
As you might expect, a legal and political reaction is coming. For example, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem criticized President Biden for “holding lunch money for poor Americans hostage in pursuit of his radical agenda.” In a recent tweet, she warned, “If you act on this, Joe, we’ll see you in court, and we will win.”
This is an administration that is essentially threatening, “If you don’t do what we say, we will take your lunch money.” It’s time for governors and school districts to push back.