Public education has become a deeply contentious issue in America, particularly in light of increasingly polarized politics. The old conversations about how public schools should be funded have been left behind in favor of talking points about “social indoctrination” and “wokeness infiltrating public education,” points that are increasingly pushed by special interest groups.

Involvement in Public Education

Moms For Liberty is one such special interest group that has been making headlines for their pushes to be involved in public education. The group was founded in Florida in 2021, and was the result of one of the founders losing her spot on a school board to a more liberal candidate.

Source: Flickr/Gage Skidmore

Moms For Liberty has grown rapidly since its inception, and has become a significant player both in the national conversation around education and national politics. As of July, 2023, the group had almost 300 chapters in 45 states, a significant pattern of growth for the young organization.


The organization paints itself as non-partisan and grounded in conservative values. The founders are all registered Republicans, and the group itself rose in reaction to opposition to public health regulations that were put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Source: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore

Despite the fact that they have tried to portray themselves as nonpartisan, Moms for Liberty has advocated for multiple far-right extremist points, including opposition to racially inclusive school curriculum as well as any education on LGBTQIA+ issues. The Southern Poverty Law Center has also documented Moms For Liberty’s association with the far-right white supremacist organization, the Proud Boys.

Centered Around Book Content

Among other things, Moms For Liberty has found itself at the center of a national conversation surrounding the content of books that are in public school libraries. States such as Florida, empowered by so-called “parent’s rights” groups such as Moms For Liberty, have been at the helm of a new movement that has pushed for significant restrictions in accessible content.

Source: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore

The alleged reasoning behind these restrictions have been in order to provide parents with greater control over what their children are accessing while in school. This movement has come alongside pushes to ban Critical Race Theory and wokeism from schools, which have largely been led by conservative governors and states such as Ron Desantis in Florida.

A Florida Book Ban

Florida in particular has passed a particularly insidious law that has made it excessively easy for “concerned” individuals to remove books from school libraries. This is a bill that was pushed, in part, by Moms For Liberty, and states that if a board member stopped reading because a book was offensive, it could be removed from the school library immediately.

Source: Wikimedia Commons/Tom Williams

This law has turned concern about book content into a performative art around book banning. Videos of Moms For Liberty members reading explicit passages from books without context have gone public on the internet, creating a confusing conversation about exactly what can be done to fight back against such a specific rule.

Different Tactics on Content Restriction

This is only one example of the different ways that Moms For Liberty, and other conservative groups, have been advocating for content restriction in schools. It has created a national conversation around book bans and the real meaning of parental rights, particularly in what specific rights are the obligation of the state and what parents can do to advocate for themselves and their children.

Source: CBS

Moms For Liberty, when asked about their stance on book bans, though, have gone out of their way to avoid the specific conversation around the topic. This can be seen blatantly in an interview that was recently done on 60 Minutes with two of the co-founders of Moms For Liberty, Tiffany Justice and Tina Descovich.

An Opening Interview

Scott Pelley opened the report by interviewing a school board member from South Carolina, a Republican who has seen his life upended by the conservatives in his district who have been complaining about books and curriculum in droves.

Source: CBS

Complaints about book content in schools would, in the past, generally have been handled through a parental opt-out form or a similar process that would allow for individual parents to exercise their rights without affecting the curriculum as a whole. The success of movements such as Moms For Liberty has changed all of that, though.

Ultimately Aiming for Control of the Curriculum

“Parents have the right to determine what their children are taught and what they’re allowed to read, no doubt about it,” the board member told Perry. “But what we’re having a problem with is parents that want to determine what other parents’ rights are for their children to read what they want.”

Source: CBS

Parent’s rights organizations like Moms For Liberty often rebuke this fairly simple result of the policies they support. Complete control over content of the curriculum often appears to be the ultimate goal of parents’ rights advocacy, which has driven some of the intense backlash against these organizations across the country.

“You’re Being Evasive

When interviewing Justice and Descovich, Perry asked about these issues, quickly growing frustrated at the evasiveness of the two women. It got to a point where he pointed out the obvious fact, that the two were being deliberately evasive in the face of his questions.

Source: X/60 Minutes

Rather than answering any of the questions directly, the pair resorted to talking points that Moms For Liberty have used to successfully push their agenda. Descovich pointed out the alleged growing trend of “rogue teachers” in America, referring to her past history as a teacher herself.

“What Are You Afraid Of?”

Justice agreed with her co-founder, pointing out that parents sent their children to school in order to be educated, not to be indoctrinated. This comment was made in support of the “rogue teacher” theory that Descovich tried to push, but Perry didn’t let the pair get off by reciting these talking points.

Source: X/60 Minutes

Instead, Perry tried to push either of the women to answer exactly what it was that they were afraid of and advocating against. “What ideology are the children being indoctrinated into? What is your fear?” he asked specifically, though neither woman ended up answering the question directly.

Discussing LGBTQ+ Issues

Book banning isn’t the only topic that Perry tackled with the Moms For Liberty co-founders, though. He also pointed out the fact that many of their pushes have been deliberately in opposition to any sort of LGBTQ+ support, which the women ignored as well.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

He attempted to broach the subject more delicately several times, but Perry ultimately was blunt. He pointed out the fact that groups such as Moms For Liberty have co-opted the word ‘groomer’ when it comes to discussing LGBTQ+ issues, and stated, “‘Grooming’ does not seem like a word that you want to take on.”

Moms For Liberty Members Losing

The entire interview was a masterful example of how Justice and Descovich have managed to push their agenda without supporting any real policy stances that they can be interviewed on. While the interview with Perry ran for the allotted hour, a good portion of that was trying to get any sort of straight answer about Moms For Liberty.

Source: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore

When that was unsuccessful, Perry resorted to discussing facts with the co-founders. He pointed out that Moms For Liberty supporters and members have been losing in various local elections across the country, to the tune of two-thirds of their supported candidates losing.

Extremism in National Politics

This is a pattern that has been reflected in national politics, beyond simply Moms For Liberty. Groups that are advocating for far-right and extremist policies are losing big time at the ballot box, which critics have used as an example of these policies not being popular with the greater public.

Source: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore

Donald Trump himself has seen the result of the increasing polarization in America. As he has leaned further and further into his far-right base in order to cultivate them to what he hopes will be another presidential victory, he, and groups like Moms For Liberty, are slowly losing the bulk of America.

Far from the End of Moms For Liberty

The 60 Minutes interview is far from the only one that has tried to get a straight answer from Moms For Liberty on their agenda, and it certainly won’t be the last. As time goes on, hopefully the leadership of Moms For Liberty will realize their lack of substance in their policies and grow to meet the changing times.

Source: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore

A nice thought, certainly, but not one that appears grounded in any sort of reality. Groups like Moms For Liberty rarely swing the other way once they’ve delved this deeply into extremist ideology, and at this point, pointing out their hypocrisy and shallowness is the most that just about anybody can still do.