Anti-Maskers Try To Pull A January 6 On School Board, Swear Selves In As Replacements
Last week, a ragtag group of people who don't even have children in California's Poway Unified School District invaded a closed school board meeting, as part of a rally organized by dark money-funded astroturf group "Let Them Breathe," and refused to leave. Police declined to force them out and instead suggested the school board adjourn the meeting instead. You know, for their own safety.
San Diego anti-mask group Let Them Breathe were so disruptive yesterday that they shut down the Poway Unified Schoo… https://t.co/M3yZJ3RtGU— The Activated Podcast (@The Activated Podcast)1631284294.0
In slightly more normal times that might have been where it ended. Oh, no.
The anti-maskers decided ending the meeting meant school board members had vacated their seats, so they "brought in a constitutionalist" to verify this meant they could elect a new board "by quorum," then made themselves the new school board, with a swearing-in ceremony and everything. Tragically, no sashes or crowns were involved.
Video from inside the attempted overthrow of the Poway USD is extremely concerning. They were trespassing telling… https://t.co/EfgFr2WDhh— The Activated Podcast (@The Activated Podcast)1631373134.0
The trespassers then told the actual school board members in the building that they were trespassing and would have to leave, saying that they had just lost their jobs.
In the video, you can see proud "new school board president" Derek Greco talking about how the whole thing went down:
GRECO: Hey, good evening everybody, had a pretty interesting night here at the Poway Unified School District Board Meeting, of which they were only allowing select people that they chose to enter the meeting tonight, which is not legit or legal, you can't just decide who's allowed in and who's not.
So we entered the building peacefully, we refused to leave, and we demanded accountability from the Poway Unified School District Board.
And the Board vacated their seats tonight. We then brought in a constitutionalist, who, uh, we held a quorum, and we voted in a new Board. You are looking at the new President of the Poway Unified School District apparently.
I don't think "constitutionalist" is a job?
Greco, the owner of "Nu World Man," an "epigenetic youth and beauty technology" company (that I can find no information about beyond Greco's own LinkedIn page), then claimed the old board slandered and libeled them by telling the media they hadn't behaved peacefully in the meeting, and saying the police told them to adjourn the meeting at 7:11. He said they'd be reaching out soon to the media to say what really happened. He was just very impressed that this had started as a "peaceful protest" and then turned into "the people taking back their power." He was, however, disappointed the "previous" school board "acted like jerks" and "wouldn't even look us in the face" and "acted above us." Which was probably the safest thing to do in the event of a bunch of anti-mask extremists trying to overthrow your school board meeting.
The "new" school board even held a meeting at what appears to be their local Denny's, officially banning mask mandates and Critical Race Theory.
Derek claims this man is the new clerk for the Poway Unified SD Board, a position currently held by Dr. Darshana Pa… https://t.co/awPINfiUzP— The Activated Podcast (@The Activated Podcast)1631288593.0
This isn't the first time something like this has happened. In October of last year, a woman named Renea Taylor announced plans to kidnap Ohio GOP Governor Mike DeWine, in order to put him on some kind of trial, declared herself the new governor, and even had a dramatic swearing-in ceremony. That all worked out really well for her and she is now the governor of Ohio. Also, last summer, a bunch of QAnon people took a "digital soldier" oath, and now they are all members of General Michael Flynn's digital army, which is for sure part of the US military. They probably get benefits and everything! Legally, once you swear yourself into an office, no one can take it from you, which is exactly how I got to be queen of England. And if I'm not, then why am I wearing a tiara and holding this scepter, surrounded by corgis? Hmmm?
As hilarious as this all seems, it's extremely dangerous, because people are going to keep trying this shit. And it's not just that they're delusional, they've been told for decades that the Second Amendment exists because they have the right to overthrow the government. They've been told they are the only ones who count as "the people." And yes, in reality, that is just a cynical ploy by Republican politicians who want to get elected, and by NRA members who don't want gun control. But they believe it with their whole shriveled little hearts. No one got hurt in this particular attempted coup, because the school board did the right thing, but people got hurt and people died during the January 6 insurrection, and that could very well happen again.
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Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse