A California Globe reader shared this powerful op ed/letter, outlining what Gov. Gavin Newsom has done to his family through the statewide school lockdowns. The reader is known to the Globe but asked for anonymity for his children’s sake. He is a husband and a father of four.
“I watched network news last night and they’re weaponizing my son. My son was sitting there crying with me … Want to come after me? Come after me, not my kids.”
These are the words of California Governor Gavin Newsom July 28, 2021 on CBS News, following the exposé of his son’s no-mask summer basketball camp.
Here is the reality, Governor Newsom: nobody is weaponizing your kids. People are questioning YOUR decisions, not your child’s. Nobody faults your son, nobody is blaming him for anything.
We’re blaming YOU.
YOU chose to send him to a camp where the staff and children were running around maskless. YOU received the email where it clearly states that the camp will not be enforcing mask policy. And yet you sent him all the while demanding our kids remain masked up at home for the last 16 months.
I don’t know which is worse – sending your offspring to a maskless camp in the first place, while clamping down again on the rest of us, or pulling him out so he can come home and cry with you while watching the news. Nice parenting. No long terms effects, I’m sure, nothing to see here, move along.
Who’s been weaponizing kids, Governor Newsom?
Among others, it has clearly been you and the Teacher’s Unions (who so surprisingly just dumped $2m into your campaign to not get recalled). While you’ve been visiting the French Laundry and letting your child run around maskless at camp, you have kept my children out of school since March 2020.
My son worked hard through high school and excelled at athletics to get into college. Then he persevered and met the requirements for graduation. But he did not get to have a college graduation, and will NEVER have a college graduation, and he will never get that back.
My daughter was abruptly shoved out of her college Freshman year – and a year and a half later has never been allowed to set foot on the campus again. This despite the fact that the college has huge lawns where distanced classes could have easily been held, not to mention the fact that people in her age group are at extremely low risk of severe outcomes from COVID.
Do you remember your sophomore year in college? Many people do, and many people remember it as one of the happiest times in their lives – intellectual rigor, new lifelong friends, freedoms they’d never dreamed of, not yet the pressure of making a living.
My daughter will never have those memories. Instead she spent half her freshman year and her entire sophomore year staring at a Zoom screen at her parents’ house. (For full tuition, by the way.)
Good times. This fall she will (hopefully) head back to campus, to hang out with people she didn’t really have time to get to know, with the realization that now as a junior the pressures of the real world are closer than ever. And I’m sure you’ll recommend that she wear a mask so she can never truly see the faces of her friends and professors.
Who’s weaponizing our kids?
There are many worse stories to tell. My college-aged son and daughter adapted and have handled things as best they can, and they’re going to be okay. I am very proud of them.
But I also have two teen girls, freshman in high school when things went to hell. They were just coming into their own, finding their friend groups, figuring out who they were. Yet adolescence is a tricky time, as we all know… Hey – why not lock them down for over a year and see what happens? Sounds like a plan.
Well I can tell you what happened. They plummeted. Fell off a cliff. Disappeared into a morass. Swallowed up by a California haze.
These formerly bright happy children were ingested into a hell of Zoom, loneliness and apathy. Grades dropped like rocks thrown off the Golden Gate Bridge, assignments were posted on myriad different complicated websites, classes were droning computer slogs where nothing of import was taught — save for the non-stop CRT teachings which seemed to be happening whenever I walked through the room, regardless of whether the subject was physics or 18th century literature.
Who weaponized children, Governor Newsom?
You could say, “well, you’re just a bad parent, you should have done so-and-so.” But I can tell you, I’m a damn good parent, and my wife and I tried everything. Take them outside, make them exercise, go over each and every assignment with them (give it a try for fun and see what a cyber hellhole that is), get them therapy (oh great, another freaking Zoom chat because nobody will see them in person), give them iron, blah blah blah.
No, the truth is, there was no way to keep things normal, when everything was so far from normal.
There were some children who flourished under these conditions, I acknowledge that. But I know of countless stories of children like mine who spent the last year disconsolate on a couch, lonely and sad, unenthused and with little hope. I feel the untold and lasting story of this pandemic will be the lost generation of children who will spend years recovering from this calamity.
Who weaponized children, Governor Newsom?
And now you and the teacher’s union and the Biden Administration are all insisting on masks, and even hinting that in-person school might not now happen at all, even while you’re consistently flouting your own rules. You got to send your kids back to school in October 2020. Must have been nice.
I doubt that anybody faults your children or holds them to blame for anything about this.
But the question remains, who weaponized children?
You did. You politicized MY children. And harmed them.
Recall Gavin Newsom.
“What Gavin Newsom has done to our kids is cruel,” his wife told the Globe. “And I’m hardly the only mom saying it.”
There are more than 6.2 million students attending public schools in California, and another 675,000 who attend public charter schools. The University of California system includes more than 280,000 students, the California State University system includes more than 485,550 students, and the California Community College system includes more than 2.1 million students – that’s nearly 10 million publicly educated students in California impacted by Gov. Newsom’s school lockdowns and Zoom learning.