In an attempt to make a point in the ongoing political fight over what should be taught in the classroom, Rep. Eric Swalwell has likened parental involvement in children’s education to medical patients being put in charge of their own surgical procedures.
The California Democrat took to Twitter on Wednesday to respond to a comment from Republican Sen. Tim Scott saying that “we are putting parents back in charge of their kids’ education.”
“Please tell me what I’m missing here,” Swalwell wrote. “What are we doing next? Putting patients in charge of their own surgeries? Clients in charge of their own trials? When did we stop trusting experts. This is so stupid.”
Many prominent Republicans have been arguing for parents to have more of a say in how and what their children learn. The GOP Governor of Virginia, Glenn Youngkin, made this a central part of his winning gubernatorial campaign last year.
The Twitter backlash ensued. Some commenters were quick to point out that patients do in fact have control over their medical treatment.
“As a point, patients are generally in control of their own surgery,” said one Twitter user. “There is no surgeon or doctor that can force you to have surgery. Clients direct their lawyers in all sorts of things. Yes the lawyer is the expert but the client gets to decide.”
Some tweets were more to the point.
“They think they own your kids,” wrote school choice advocate Corey DeAngelis.
The discourse over whether to listen to “experts: on a given topic has been up for debate in recent years, with arguments that in some cases the experts may be swayed one way or another by financial or political incentives. The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly exacerbated these disagreements. An epidemiologist will have one expert opinion, whereas an economist or a social psychologist will have their own, potentially incompatible, expert opinion.
Author and Human Events Contributor Adam B. Coleman pointed this out in a response to Swalwell’s, saying that “experts disagree with each other all the time. That should tell you something.”
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