House Bill 495 (“Redistricting Criteria for 2021”) has several good elements that legislators should include in any redistricting plan they pass. But the bill falls short of ideal in how it mandates the use of political data in the redistricting process. It also fails to protect counties from being unnecessarily split and appears to define “community of interest” to advantage Democrats.
Academic transparency is one way to guarantee that teachers adhere to the Code of Ethics for North Carolina Educators, which requires that they do not “proselytize for personal viewpoints that are outside the scope of professional practice.” Teachers have an ethical obligation to separate their personal views from their professional responsibilities, particularly when discussing issues as contentious as the conflict in the Middle East.
The NC State Board of Elections is attempting to make our elections process less transparent. The state board’s attempt to limit the number of observers to two per day is contrary to state law. North Carolina citizens have the power to speak directly to the state board about their proposed rule changes.
Joining the Electronic Registration Information Center would help the boards of elections in North Carolina more effectively conduct the important task of voter list maintenance. The State Board of Elections is already legally empowered to join ERIC, but it needs the General Assembly to pay for it.
Senate Bill 326 would stop the privatization of election funding, require absentee ballots to be returned by election day, as is required in most states, and provide funding to help people get voter IDs.
Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson recently launched the F.A.C.T.S. (Fairness and Accountability in the Classroom for Teachers and Students) Task Force, which is dedicated to "exposing indoctrination in the classroom and ensuring that our students are taught how to think — not what to think"
On March 17, 2020, Gov. Cooper used emergency powers to shut down restaurants and bars to in-person eating and drinking, and he did so without concurrence from the Council of State, as required by the EMA. Cooper then claimed authority elsewhere in state law, setting a dangerous precedent that legislators must fix by reforming the EMA.
There is already a host of constitutional, statutory, and judicial criteria in place that restrict how the General Assembly can draw districts. Additional reforms can assure equitable redistricting without a redistricting commission.
North Carolina needs social studies standards focused on civic literacy and dedicated to providing students a balanced perspective of American history. A balanced view does not attempt to conceal the nation’s mistakes. Instead, it gives equal weight to failures and successes. It identifies errors and facts. It affirms our ideals, even as we work to create a society that honors them.
John Locke Updates by Year
John Locke Updates by Author
by Update Type
John Locke Updates by Category
Copyright 2021 John Locke Foundation. All Rights Reserved