A lawyer is making a practice area out of fighting for students subjected to a caustic ideology like critical race theory (CRT) in public schools, replete with the phone number 1-866-SUE-WOKE.
37-year-old New York attorney Jon O’Brien was a slip-and-fall and fender-bender lawyer until he began representing Gabrielle Clark, who said her biracial son received a failing grade from his charter school for refusing to confess that genes inherited from his deceased father gave him “white dominance.”
Since then, he has come to believe that the number of children receiving a personal injury in the form of emotional abuse through bizarre racial “pedagogy” in schools may outnumber those who are in more traditional accidents. He believes that lawsuits can provide a deterrent and that some parents — and, of course, their attorneys — could even see significant money for standing up for their rights.
One purpose of litigation is to create precedent that keeps the race-obsessed ideology that some call neo-racism out of public schools. Public-interest law firms look for a few cases with specific fact patterns, volunteer to take to cases for free, and aim to appeal them all the way to the Supreme Court.
But there’s also another approach that might help more people in the short term, O’Brien said.
“If you really clean a few clocks, sue the hell out of a couple schools, the insurance companies are going to take notice. They’re the ones who have to pay” judgments against school districts, he said.
“The insurance companies are not woke. They’re not anything. If they see this pedagogy as a looming liability, they’re going to send their adjustors out there and clamp down,” he told The Daily Wire. “It will actually be really interesting if lawsuits triggered enforcement not from the state, but from the insurance industry.”
In short, these cases are “retributive,” demanding compensation for pain and suffering and denial of constitutional rights by the state.
“There’s emotional damages tied to First Amendment retaliation, to Title VI discrimination… Title VI is the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Any school that receives federal funds can’t engage in discrimination. If you direct the kids to label their identity or assign someone as an oppressor, that’s compelled speech. Because their identities are forming, directing them to assert their gender or racial identities is compelled speech and invasion of privacy, which is a 14th Amendment violation,” he said.
“It’s up to a jury to decide how much that is worth. Because these are kids, they are probably not going to be nominal damages. If you have a kid claiming emotional distress or sexual or racial harassment, I think a jury would be receptive to that. And you may get a pretty good settlement offer especially if the case gets press,” he said.
Lawsuits would sue the teacher personally, as well as supervisors and the school board.
Because of the interest around the politicization of K-12 education, many of these cases could be funded through donations from crowdsourcing websites, he said. Other strong cases could be taken on contingency by private lawyers, who work for a percentage of any settlement or judgment rather than up-front fees, he said. Nonprofit public-interest law firms are barred from working on contingency.
Those who have had divisive ideas about inherent oppression forced on their innocent children, have been ignored by school bureaucracies, and want to seek relief in the courts should make sure to have their facts thoroughly documented before approaching a lawyer and be prepared to summarize the fact pattern in a clear-cut manner, he said.
Or as callers to 1-866-SUE-WOKE will hear:
“If you or a loved one has been harmed by critical race theory and would like to sue, please leave a brief message and Jonathan will be with you shortly. Stay strong and God bless America.”
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