MADISON — The Biden administration is now playing the role of school bully, taking lunch money from school districts that don’t comply with woke interpretations of Title IX.
U.S. Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-6th CD) has co-authored a bill barring the U.S. Department of Agriculture from withholding federal funds from schools that maintain biological distinctions between boys and girls.
“Comply with radical transgender ideology or leave low-income students without meals. That is the choice President Biden’s USDA is setting up for schools,” said Grothman, who introduced the Stop “Wrongs to Our Kids’ Educational” (WOKE) Meals Act with U.S. Rep. Diana Harshbarger (R-Tenn.).
“This mandate from the Administration is a way to strongarm schools into falling in line with the ‘woke’ left’s worldview and it is disgraceful. If a school, parent, student, or teacher believes that there are biological differences between males and females, too bad, because their federal funding may be cut off if they don’t obey this mandate.”
In early May, the USDA announced plans to interpret federal anti-discrimination law under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 to include “sexual orientation and gender identity.”
“As a result, state and local agencies, program operators and sponsors that receive funds from FNS must investigate allegations of discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation,” the USDA said in a statement, first reported by the Center Square. “Those organizations must also update their non-discrimination policies and signage to include prohibitions against discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation.”
Recipients of the agency’s Food and Nutrition Services child nutrition programs, including the National School Lunch Program, could lose federal funding if they do not comply with Biden’s legally suspect interpretation of Title IX.
If passed, the Stop WOKE Meals Act would block the USDA from moving forward with its new view of Title IX anti-discrimination laws that could strip federal funding for meal assistance programs from schools that do not let transgender students use bathrooms or play on sports teams with members of the opposite sex.
“Punishing schools for failing to adopt radical transgender ideology is wrong. Ripping school lunches from low-income students because their schools disallow biological males to enter women’s restrooms and compete in women’s sports is nothing short of disgraceful,” Harshbarger said.
The bill has 14 cosponsors, including U.S. Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-7th CD).
“Nobody dreamed that someday school lunches would be used as leverage to force school districts to do what the transgender lobby wants. Nevertheless, the Biden Administration’s new rule opens the door to letting children go hungry if schools do not adhere to his extreme gender ideology,” Grothman said.