Here’s a “connect the dots” moment. I’ve mentioned this sad case before. First, courtesy of Annie Holmquist, some background:
Would you be willing to risk arrest by the government in order to choose the best education for your child?
That’s the situation the Romeike family faced a number of years ago when they lived in Bissingen, Germany. They chose to homeschool their young grade school age children even though homeschooling was illegal in Germany. The reason? Their children were bullied and scared about the violence they were facing in their local state school.
That choice resulted in a visit from police, and soon three of their children, ages six to nine, were hauled off in a police vehicle and forced to attend the official state school. Recounting the 2006 incident, father Uwe Romeike told one media outlet that he “felt very helpless,” going on to note, “My children were crying, the police were shouting.”
Faced with hefty fines, the Romeikes fled Germany for America in 2008, seeking asylum. Settling in Tennessee, the family continued homeschooling while they fought for protection from their German persecutors. In 2014, the Department of Homeland Security allowed the family to stay in the U.S. “under order of supervision and indefinite deferred action status,” according to the Homeschool Legal Defense Association.
The family—which has now grown to include two more children and two in-laws since the trauma in Germany—has continued to dwell in the U.S. for over a decade, living peacefully and homeschooling their children.
Let the Government bastardy begin.
On Sept. 6, 2023, the Romeikes went in for their annual immigration visit and were shocked when they were told they had four weeks to get their passports in order and self-deport to Germany. “The family had no prior warning, and was offered no explanation, other than that there had been a ‘change of orders,’” a Home School Legal Defense Association media posting explained.
What could possibly have caused this “change in orders”? Let us now connect the dots, with this little statement from the Biden Cabinet Secretary of Education:
“I don’t have too much respect for people that are misbehaving in public and acting like they know what’s right for kids.”
Here’s the thing. Tennessee is a homeschool-friendly state — i.e. the state government has no problem with people homeschooling their kids. But: immigration is a federal issue. So if the Dept. of Education drops a little whisper in the ear of INS, the federal government can step in and fuck with people like the hapless Romeike family, essentially making Tennessee’s jurisdiction meaningless.
There is, of course, another interesting aspect to all this. Since arriving in the U.S., the Romeikes have had two more children — and according to U.S. law, the two kids are U.S. citizens (yeah, they’re “anchor babies”). So can the federal government deport U.S. citizens when in fact neither they nor any of their family have broken any American laws?
I hope the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSDLA) climbs into this with might and main — because this is precisely the kind of matter that is in their remit.
Read all of Annie’s article, because The Naked Communist is clearly fast becoming part of official U.S. government policy.
In the meantime, let us think about the proper treatment for an unelected
gauleiter government official who thinks that parents don’t know what’s best for their kids, but the government does.
Just to make my own position clear on this issue: if I were being put in a similar position when homeschooling my own kids, I’d be making that difficult decision about calling in the HSDLA, or just going to the guns. My kids belong to me, not to the State, no matter what the State thinks.
Oh, and Annie: welcome back to Intellectual Takeout. You have been sorely missed.