Michelle Malkin: Who’s tracking your children?

Careful consideration must be given this article. Parents and grandparents have added challenges on their hands now.

Initially, what might seem like a good idea to some parents, I TESTIFY IS NOT.

This is another way that government gets their hands in the privacy cookie jar of each parent and child. This is another reason for the nation to homeschool their children. This is another indication of the constitutional rights of schoolchildren and their parents slowly eroding. Then one day we might wake up and realize this precious and inspired constitution of ours must be pulled out of the weeds of wickedness surrounding it.

We must ask questions of school leaders, perhaps some once never thought of. We must remain vigilant. Vigilance however, requires one to be persistent in educational discoveries, such as the discovery April Serrano made below. Parents must act on those discoveries.  It means parental involvement like never before to stem the tide of tyranny in our educational system. Parents can help save their children in this regard. It is possible, but, only we can do it.

Ladies and gentlemen, below is the ever vigilant warning voice of Michelle Malkin.

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May 30, 2013

The school year may be over for most American students, but parents must remain as vigilant as ever when it comes to protecting their children’s privacy. Look no further than the shocking, invasive conduct of the Polk County, Fla., educational district last week. It’s a surveillance-state sign of the times.

Two days before their Memorial Day weekend break, kids from at least three different public schools — Bethune Academy (K-5), Davenport School of the Arts (K-5, middle and high school), and Daniel Jenkins Academy (6-12) — were subjected to iris scans without their parents’ knowledge or consent. The scans are essentially optical fingerprints, which the school intended to collect to create a database of  bio-metric information for school bus security.

One mother took to Facebook to decry the outrageous breach after her son informed her of the unauthorized imaging. She posted a face-saving letter from Polk County Senior Director of Support Services Rob Davis notifying families only after the high-definition eye scans had been conducted.

The mom, April Serrano of Kissimmee, Fla., recounted: “I have been in touch with the principal at my son’s school this morning regarding the iris scans. She verified everything my son told me. … She said that she was following instructions from the Polk County School Board (PCSB), and that she knew very little, if anything, about this before it occurred. She just did as she was told.”

The principal “did as she was told,” no questions asked, just like a compliant servant of Big Brother is expected to do. Thank goodness for whistle-blowing parents unafraid to speak truth to mind-numbed power.

I phoned Davis, the school bureaucrat who oversaw the intrusive iris scan initiative, on Wednesday after education reform activists spread the word about Serrano’s protest across social media. He confirmed to me that the Orwellian incident indeed took place. Davis sheepishly admitted that it was “a mistake on our part” that a notification letter to parents did not go out earlier in the month. He then blamed a secretary who had a “medical emergency” for the administrative mishap.

But this was far more than an innocent clerical error. Instead of verifying that parents received the letter and ensuring that any families who wanted to opt out had a chance to so, the schools allowed officials from Stanley Convergent Security Solutions into the schools to take iris scans of an unknown number of students as part of a “pilot” security tracking program for students who ride the bus. Stanley operates “identity management” systems using “Eyelock bio-metric readers” that “ensure maximum convenience with unprecedented accuracy.”

The participating Polk County schools were all notified, but somehow the parents of students who ride on a total of 17 school buses to the three schools were all left in the dark. In addition, the district had planned to conduct a pilot scan program with another security company, Blinkspot.

Davis says all of the data have been destroyed. So has the trust parents had in these negligent educrats violating family privacy in the name of “safety.”

Parents have asked the school board for proof that the records have been wiped. Unsurprisingly, school officials have clammed up now that they are under public scrutiny.

“I am outraged and sickened by this blatant disregard for my son’s constitutional right to privacy and my parental rights over my son,” Serrano told me this week. Another affected mom, Connie Turlington, also publicly challenged the school district on local TV station WFLA:

“This is a fingerprint of my child. Where does this information live? Who has a hold of it? … My question is: How is it deleted, and how can we be assured as parents that it’s gone?”

These parents are not alone. School districts across the country are contracting with private tracking firms to monitor students. Some are using radio frequency tracking technology (RFID) to log movements. Khaliah Barnes, the open government counsel with the Washington, D.C.-based Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), spelled out the chilling implications for freedom of speech, religion and association in a recent CBN interview:

“Imagine for example a student being dissuaded from attending a political interest group because she fears that the tracking technology will alert the principal or other administrators where her political affiliations lie.”

Now, add the threat that the nationalized Common Core student databases pose to students and families. As I’ve reported previously, the feds are constructing an unprecedented nationwide student tracking system to aggregate massive amounts of personal data — including health-care histories, income information, religious affiliations, voting status and even blood types and homework completion.

The data will be available to a wide variety of public agencies. And despite federal student-privacy protections guaranteed by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, the Obama administration is paving the way for private entities to buy their way into the data boondoggle. EPIC is now suing the federal Department of Education over its regulatory sabotage of privacy protections.

Those who scoff at us “paranoid” parents for pushing back at Big Brother in the classroom suffer from an abject failure of imagination about government tyranny. Control freaks in public education understand all too well: The hand that tracks our children rules the world.

Washington Examiner Columnist Michelle Malkin, author of “Culture of Corruption: Obama and his Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks & Cronies,” is nationally syndicated by Creators Syndicate.

NY Sheriffs Join Lawsuit Against NY SAFE Act

A federal lawsuit has been filed against the State of New York by affiliates of the National Rifle Association (NRA). New York State’s Rifle and Pistol Association filed the lawsuit earlier this month claiming that “the SAFE Act is unconstitutional in that it violates the Second Amendment, the Equal Protection Clause, and is unconstitutionally vague.” Now, the New York State Sheriffs Association has joined as amicus curiae in the lawsuit to challenge the constitutionality of the NY SAFE Act.

The Oneida Dispatch reports,

Oneida County Sheriff Robert Maciol has been a member of the NYS Sheriff’s Association since taking office as sheriff in 2011, serves on several committees, and is currently serving as the association’s sergeant at arms.

“As soon as I learned of the potential to become part of this important process, I immediately advised the NYS Sheriff’s Association of my support for this action,” Maciol said.

The amicus brief will support the main suit by setting forth legal arguments against the NY SAFE Act specifically from the view of law enforcement. Some of the arguments contained in the brief are that the law impinges upon the Second Amendment to a degree that renders it unconstitutional; that the law is fatally vague; and that the law does not provide sufficient guidance to law enforcement.

The New York Sheriffs Association, along with 5 individual sheriffs issued a statement regarding the SAFE Act:

“The Supreme Court has confirmed that the Second Amendment protects arms typically possessed by law-abiding citizens, and identified that the right of self-defense is ‘core’ protected conduct that is at its zenith in the home,” the sheriffs’ brief said. “At a minimum, laws that criminalize the most common rifle in America today – a rifle that is often selected precisely for its self-defense capabilities – impinge upon that core right. The same is true of laws banning standard-capacity magazines.”

The SAFE Act has been challenged in court, revised and has been questioned as to its constitutionality by court judges.

Lawmakers have been calling on sheriffs to enforce the SAFE Act. Erie County Sheriff Tim Howard was called out by Democrat Assemblyman Sean Ryan for his stand against the NY SAFE Act. The sheriff said he would not enforce the gun control measure as there are 75,000 pistol permit holders in Erie County.

“People know where I stand,” he said, “they know how I feel, I’m very concerned for public safety. I’m very concerned for police and communities that we serve. This law is wrong. It will not help us, it’s a squandered opportunity to make New York safe.”

Ryan has attempted to pressure Howard to enforce the SAFE Act saying, “As a top law enforcement official in Erie County, you’re job is to enforce the laws, you don’t have the liberty to pick and choose. We elect a sheriff, we don’t elect a king. Kings get to make their own laws, sheriffs get to follow laws as written.”

My question to Mr. Ryan is does he think he is a King and can just throw off the law of the land and write his own law? Apparently he does, since he is one of the legislators that approved the NY SAFE Act and now wants to force it on the citizens of New York and their other elected officials like their sheriffs.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has tried to silence the sheriffs on this issue. Chemung County Sheriff Christopher Moss said, “Cuomo pushed the sheriffs to stop publicly speaking out against the act. The governor was of the opinion that the sheriffs around the state should not be interjecting their personal opinions in reference to the law.”

One person even stated that Cuomo threatened to remove sheriffs from office who did not comply.

The NY Sheriffs Association stands with Howard who said that he “won’t enforce” the SAFE Act. That’s why they are joining the lawsuit. In essence, they are telling Assemblymen like Sean Ryan that they are not kings either, but elected representatives that cannot make up laws that are contrary to the law of the land.

Just two weeks ago a man was arrested for carrying 2 more bullets (9) than the seven allowed under the new law.

Read more: http://freedomoutpost.com/2013/05/ny-sheriffs-join-lawsuit-against-ny-safe-act/#ixzz2UdQ3QEMn

Obama Claims That Working With Muslim Brotherhood Will Bring Victory Over Terrorism

by Pamela Geller

from freedomoutpost.com

The president decided last Thursday – five years into his presidency – to finally address the gravest threat to our nation and the West in the wake of a bloody wave of jihad attacks under his sloppy and feckless watch.

He said, “Victory will be measured in parents taking their kids to school; immigrants coming to our shores; fans taking in a ballgame; a veteran starting a business; a bustling city street.”

What does that even mean? He speaks of “victory” when he is the architect of defeat. He speaks of victory while the Fort Hood victims languish and slaughtering jihadist Nidal Hasan still has not been brought to trial, but has received more than a quarter-of-a-million dollars in compensation. He speaks of victory when he won’t even call the jihad attack on a London street “terrorism,” instead terming it “senseless violence.”

Jihad beheading victim Lee Rigby will receive the same tribute as soldiers who die in action, but Fort Hood jihad victims are victims of a “criminal act of single individual,” not international terrorism. Why would Obama authorize a drone hit on Anwar al-Awlaki (who never killed anyone) but not give the victims of his Islamic preachings the same military designation?

What is his plan? It’s to partner with Muslim Brotherhood groups in America that work feverishly to “eliminate and destroy” America from within. Obama said Thursday that

“the best way to prevent violent extremism is to work with the Muslim American community – which has consistently rejected terrorism – to identify signs of radicalization, and partner with law enforcement when an individual is drifting toward violence.”

Work with the Muslim American community? Just as Obama said this, former Hamas-CAIR official Cyrus McGoldrick urged Muslims not to talk to law enforcement. “And never let them in your home.” This is Hamas-CAIR’s policy as well. They urge Muslims not to cooperate with the authorities. Really, Obama? You’re counting on these Islamic supremacists?

Robert Spencer said,

The Muslim American community has consistently rejected terrorism? Four separate studies since 1998 have all found that 80 percent of U.S. mosques were teaching jihad, Islamic supremacism, and hatred and contempt for Jews and Christians. … And in the summer of 2011 came another study showing that only 19 percent of mosques in U.S. don’t teach jihad violence and/or Islamic supremacism.”

But Obama wants to work with the Muslim American community – despite the fact that all the major Muslim groups in the U.S. are linked in various ways to the Muslim Brotherhood, which is dedicated in its own words to “eliminating and destroying Western civilization from within.” What’s his plan? To close Gitmo and release the killers, when we know the recidivism rate is extraordinarily high. He stands by his drone attacks while having denied the motive of jihadic doctrine. He is killing Americans and yet he whines that we “compromised our basic values – by using torture to interrogate our enemies.”

He is denigrating the Bush administration’s waterboarding of three killers that saved thousands of lives and led to the killing of Osama bin Laden. Our soldiers are waterboarded so they understand the process. Who does this poser think he’s kidding? He kills people, spies on journalists and abandons our ambassador and other Americans in Libya, and he is preaching to us?

Obama says that there have been no large-scale attacks in the U.S. I disagree. Scores of large scale attacks were thwarted. That counts. And Fort Hood and Boston were large scale. Hundreds of people living with shrapnel, broken flesh and bone – and the dead.

Our delusional president claims our standing in the world is what it was. I beg to differ. We are much weaker under his reign. Obama’s abandonment of our allies in Egypt, Libya, Israel and Eastern Europe has weakened our hegemony and influence in those regions. And he has effectively surrendered to the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Obama claims that “unrest in the Arab World has also allowed extremists to gain a foothold in countries like Libya and Syria.” That, too, is a deliberate misrepresentation of what happened. Obama backed jihadists. That’s what happened in the Muslim world. Did he think that backing jihadists in Egypt, Libya, Tunisia and now Syria would end well?

What’s his plan? Why didn’t Obama mention that his administration scrubbed all counter terrorism materials and manuals of jihad and Islam – disarming law enforcement and counter terrorism officials? Where did that get us? Boston.

When Obama speaks of the threat on our shores, he only cites the rare non-Muslim attacks: “Finally, we face a real threat from radicalized individuals here in the United States. Whether it’s a shooter at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin; a plane flying into a building in Texas; or the extremists who killed 168 people at the federal building in Oklahoma City.”

He doesn’t say a word about the hundreds of thwarted, and in some cases successful, acts of jihad. He goes on to explain that jihadists are lying when they quote Quran chapter and verse and wage war in the case of Islam. Obama said, “This ideology is based on a lie, for the United States is not at war with Islam.”
No, it is Obama who is lying
about the ideology. And while we may not be at war with Islam, clearly there is a significant part of Islam that is at war with us. Are we going to fight back?

Read more: http://freedomoutpost.com/2013/05/obama-claims-that-working-with-muslim-brotherhood-will-bring-victory-over-terrorism/#ixzz2URexGqxG

HERE ARE THE 5 KEY THINGS TO TAKE AWAY FROM WEDNESDAY’S BENGHAZI HEARING

The Benghazi, Libya massacre, where our Ambassador, Christopher Stevens, and others lives were senselessly taken, has continued the road to actual fact finding and seriously disturbing information, in the Washington hearings yesterday.

I watched the vast majority of the hearing on The Blaze network, with Buck Sexton doing a phenomenal job in real time coverage.

This is a very evil time for our country, but, we must live our lives as positively as possible. Stay involved to help our country out yet take care of our families and do the seemingly mundane things of life, for they matter as well.

Jason Howerton has written a wonderful breakdown of the important events at yesterday’s hearing.

I bear witness that GOOD will triumph over evil because God is still on the side of those who live right.

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May 8, 2013     8:50pm

by Jason Howerton of  THE BLAZE

Three Benghazi whistleblowers appeared before the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday to shed some light on the deadly terrorist attack that claimed the lives of four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, State Department official Sean Smith and former Navy SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods.

Several stunning revelations were made throughout the hearing, however, there were a few things that stood out.

Here are the five key things to take away from Wednesday’s Benghazi hearing:

5. STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL FINGERED TERROR GROUP DAY AFTER ATTACK

One of the biggest points of contention in the Benghazi investigation has been: Why did the Obama administration initially blame the terrorist attack on a YouTube video when there was no apparent evidence to support that theory?

During the House Oversight Committee hearing on the Benghazi attack, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.)read from an email sent by Beth Jones, the acting assistant secretary for Middle Eastern affairs at the State Department, to Benghazi whistleblower Gregory Hicks and other top administration officials. In it, she fingered Ansar al-Sharia, a radical Islamic terror group, as the perpetrator behind the attack after the Libyan government speculated that they might be ex-Gadhafi forces.

The email was sent the day after the attack on Sept. 12, 2012 — well before the Obama administration started pushing the YouTube video narrative.

“I spoke to the Libyan ambassador and emphasized the importance of Libyan leaders continuing to make strong statements,” the email read. “When he said his government expected that former Ghadafi regime elements carried out the attacks, I told him that the group that conducted the attacks, Ansar al-Sharia, is affiliated with Islamic terrorists.”

Gowdy said the email was previously unreleased, but not classified.

4. WHO IS LT. COL. GIBSON?
Benghazi whistleblower Gregory Hicks repeatedly brought up a man by the name of Lt. Col. Gibson. Other than the fact that he was a Special Operations Command (SOC) Africa commander, we don’t know much else about him.

But more importantly, we don’t know what else he knows about the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2012. On the night of the Benghazi attack, Gibson was “furious” when a stand down order was given, preventing Special Forces from intervening in Libya, Hicks testified.

Hicks said Gibson wanted to bring the Americans trapped in Benghazi home, but was unable to act. Does Gibson know who personally issued the stand down order? Does he know how far up the chain of command the order originated?

These are questions to keep in mind as the investigation proceeds.

3. BENGHAZI WITNESS TOLD NOT TO SPEAK WITH CONGRESSIONAL INVESTIGATOR ALONE

Hicks on Wednesday also revealed that he was told by Obama administration officials not to talk with Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) unsupervised.

A State Department lawyer accompanied the delegation and tried to be in every single meeting he was involved in, Hicks claimed.

Chaffetz, who traveled to Benghazi after the attack to investigate, also claimed back in October that the administration assigned a State Department attorney to follow him in his every “footstep” during his investigative trip.

2. WHISTLEBLOWER ‘EFFECTIVELY DEMOTED’ AFTER QUESTIONING BENGHAZI TALKING POINTS

Gregory Hicks told members of Congress that he has been “effectively demoted” from his position as deputy chief of mission shortly after he questioned United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice’s explanation that the Benghazi attack was the result of a spontaneous protest sparked by a YouTube video.

Hicks, the former deputy chief of mission under murdered U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, now holds the title of foreign affairs officer in the Office of Global Intergovernmental Affairs.

“In hindsight I think it began after I asked a question about Ambassador Rice’s statement on the TV shows,” Hicks said, after being asked what the “seminal” moment had been in all of his new professional criticism.

1. THERE WAS A STAND DOWN ORDER

Though some the details are still fuzzy, someone issued a stand down order that prevented Special Forces from traveling to Benghazi to intervene after the attack.

Hicks, the former deputy chief of mission for the U.S. in Libya and the highest ranking official in the country at the time of the Benghazi attacks, testified that either AFRICOMM or SOCAFRICA issued the stand down order, though he didn’t have a name or where the command originated.

Hicks said Lt. Col. Gibson, a Special Operations Command (SOC) Africa commander, was “furious” after receiving the stand down order. “Lt. Col. Gibson was furious. I had told him to go bring our people home. That’s what he wanted to do,” he said.

However, the burning question remains: Who, with the appropriate authority, actually gave the stand down order? And why?