Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) lashed out at a gay leader of a teachers union for saying that the U.S. is a democracy.
“And, you know, maybe one of the things that we need to address with the Democrat party is, you played a clip from the teachers union with Randi there talking,” Boebert said, referring to out American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten. “Maybe one thing we need to address is we’re not a democracy! So quit with that!”
She was referring to a clip where Weingarten said: “How many lives will be shattered before we have the courage to do what Scotland did, what Australia did, what New Zealand did, what other great democracies do? We must solve this epidemic, and that’s up to us.”
“Maybe that’s where you’re getting it wrong,” Boebert ranted. “It’s saying that we are a democracy. We are a constitutional republic.”
She then said that schools should teach kids that the U.S. isn’t a democracy and that this would somehow end “all this woke nonsense.”
“And that is something that needs to be taught in our schools, not this woke critical race theory on how to hate our country and hate your fellow classmates and community members because of the color of their skin,” continued Boebert. “Maybe teach a little honor and respect for our history and the correct history rather than all this woke nonsense that produces the Ilhan Omars of the world.”
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services says that the U.S. is a “representative democracy.”
The right has been infatuated with the argument that the U.S. is not a democracy since Donald Trump won the 2016 presidential election without winning a majority of the popular vote. It has become a perennial response to complaints that the government doesn’t follow the will of the people or about the parts of the U.S. government that thwart the “one person, one vote” principle; instead of arguing that something like, say, the Electoral College doesn’t represent the will of the majority of the U.S. population, they just argue that the U.S. isn’t a democracy and therefore the majority shouldn’t rule.
Usually, when they say that the U.S. isn’t a democracy, they mean that it’s a representative democracy or a republic (which still can be puzzling since voting for representatives is part of the definition of a republic). But that doesn’t really make sense with how Boebert used the argument since Scotland, Australia, and New Zealand also have representative forms of government.
This isn’t the first time the right has attacked Weingarten. In 2021, Sen Tom Cotton (R-AR) said that she is “a joke” as the head of a teachers’ union.
“Randi Weingarten does not even have children of her own,” he said. “What in the hell does she know about raising and teaching kids?”
LGBTQ+ people are less likely to have kids, partly as a result of institutional discrimination against LGBTQ+ parents. The Census Bureau found that about 15% of same-sex couples had at least one child under the age of 18, less than half of the 38% of opposite-sex couples that have a minor child.
“Is he now disqualifying every nun from teaching?” Weingarten tweeted about Cotton. “Or is this simply a new divisive & hateful homophobic slur against LGBTQ teachers?”