After months of harassment and intimidation over her attempts to question critical race theory (CRT) and gender ideology in schools, Oshawa trustee Linda Stone has decided to call it quits.
Appointed to the Durham District School Board (DDSB) in 2020, Stone told True North she resigned three weeks ago because the backlash over her positions – particularly the tweets and e-mails – had been “very difficult” on her psyche.
“They (the woke crowd) shut down criticism and call you names,” she said.
Stone first came under fire in January when she questioned certain aspects of the board’s new human rights policy – an 18-page manifesto that contains the usual woke buzzwords and anti-white bias.
She was particularly concerned about the definition of white supremacy.
In the DDSB policy, white supremacy is defined as “a racist ideology based on the belief that white identity is the norm, standard and ideal. It does not refer to extreme hate groups or far right extremists …”
The definition comes straight out of a Critical Race Theory (CRT) playbook.
Stone said she was worried the new HR policy would be used to silence critics just as the Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB) did with 20-year teacher Carolyn Burjoski in January.
Burjoski – who was shut down halfway into her deputation to the board about highly sexualized books in elementary school libraries – has since launched a $1.7-million defamation suit against the board and its chair, Scott Piatkowski.
Stone resigned as chair of the DDSB’s governance committee in February but until three weeks ago remained on as trustee. She left the role of chair saying her colleagues had tried to cancel her for vigorously defending free speech.
Those colleagues, Stone said, had informed her that her questions and comments were “offensive and harmful” – even though all she did was urge them to try to see things from another perspective.
“Are we teaching our students to be intolerant of other points of view?” she asked at the time.
After the February board meeting where she stepped down, Stone said the unions took her to task for speaking out on Twitter and in public, particularly with respect to her concerns that girls could feel uncomfortable sharing a gender-neutral washroom with transitioning males.
Stone said she also had an issue with a board edict requiring that parents be kept in the dark over whether a student wants to change their pronouns – unless the student says it is okay.
“Parents should be part of a child making life-changing decisions,” she said.
Among those who criticized Stone for speaking out was Egale (Equality for Gays and Lesbians Everywhere), a once well-respected advocacy organization that is now responsible for providing highly sexualized and age-inappropriate workshops on transphobia and gender ideology to elementary school students.
Stone said Egale sent out e-mails warning her to stop being “transphobic.”
In fact, the publicly funded organization proudly expresses its vision as a Canada and a world “with homophobia, biphobia, transphobia and all other forms of oppression” so that every person can achieve their potential “free from hatred and bias.”
Stone told True North she had five complaints registered against her and that it got to a point where she didn’t want to open her e-mails or go on Twitter.
“You get this feeling in your stomach,” she said. “I was merely asking people to look at the other side (of the argument) instead of just shutting down criticism and calling me names.”
While she has resigned from the board, Stone said that being on the “outside” has allowed her to be so much more engaged with people who believe in the same principles as her.
“Now I feel so much better,” she said.
She also wanted to make it clear that although the woke activists get all the attention, there remain some great people within the DDSB who do great jobs despite the overwhelming influence of the woke agenda.
“Still I want to emphasize that the board does some amazing work and has some great teachers,” she said.