Donna Garner Brings Nonsensical ArgumentsI will continue to give answers to Donna Garner’s groundless claims. In my last article, I briefly mentioned the superficial and wrong perceptions and knowledge from Donna Garner, who even lacks the basic information despite continuously labeling some charter schools as “Gulen Charter Schools”. Let's continue to answer Garner's weird claims.
Claim: “I received this note from a local pastor:
The local Harmony Science Academy is obviously one of these schools. One of our church families had a daughter there, but the Muslim influence and foundation of beliefs and practices led them to remove her.
Thanks for bringing attention to this.
R.” (Taken from her article on ISD Initiative website dated February 10, 2011)
Answer: A dubious and obscure claim! First of all, there is no name mentioned here. No name of the pastor or Harmony School, having 33 campuses in Texas, is given. Why are you scared Ms. Garner? Do you think people will bug the pastor? Or are you just making up stories?
Looks like she is just making up brand-new stories. Besides, I can also write similar things about any school or any other organization. For example, something like this: “Hi Donna… The local elementary school here is one of these schools where you find child abuse. One of our church families had a son there, but the abusive manners of the teachers led me to remove my son.” Looks familiar right? Here I could have put the name of a famous elementary school and defamed their name.
Also, if there were to be such influence, brainwashing or similar practices, some other parents would definitely pull out their kids and that would hit the local and national headlines as well. Since it is illegal to teach religion in public schools, any contrary practice will put that school into trouble.
Before making an ambiguous claim, people should think twice, because these kinds of claims, without any backing factual data, could leave a permanent negative spot on the mentioned organizations.
Claim: Students at the so-called Gulen (charter) schools celebrate various Turkish Muslim holidays (taken from her Education News article dated March 24, 2011).
Answer: Superficial claims are abound. This was another one I came up while reading Donna Garner’s stories.
According to my research, there is no such Muslim celebration at Harmony Schools. Moreover, Donna Garner displays her ignorance again. The term “Turkish Muslim holidays”, if two Muslim religious festivals are meant (Eid ul-Fitr and Eid ul-Adha) by this, is something non-existent and somewhat ridiculous concept. Muslims have two major religious holidays and you do not have to bring the adjective “Turkish” in front of the Muslim Holidays. On the other hand, such a celebration requires the witness of a couple of hundred students and some parents, administrators and other community members. At the end of the day, one would leak this “mysterious” and “secret” event to the media, wouldn’t s/he?
All these things point to one fact: Donna Garner is a couple of miles away from the facts. She just makes up the stories and throws mud on people. I would expect her to closely investigate the issue she is working on.
TO BE CONTINUED...