It was supposed to be Rebecca Friedrichs’ name taken in vain countless times every day in the conclaves of America’s public-sector unions.
By rights, hers should have been the example that freed millions of government employees.
In 2016, the 28-year teacher filed a lawsuit against the state and the California Teachers Association (CTA), challenging the policy of requiring union membership and dues (or payment of a so-called “agency fee”) as a condition of employment as an educator.
The case moved quickly to the U.S. Supreme Court, where, by all accounts, the justices were expected to rule 5-4 in her favor and strike down compulsory union participation for all public employees.
But just weeks after hearing oral arguments in Friedrichs v. CTA, conservative Justice Antonin Scalia suffered a heart attack and died before a ruling could be issued. With the shorthanded court deadlocked at 4-4, the case was returned to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which affirmed its earlier vote against Friedrichs.
Happily, the very same issues were revisited again two years later, in 2018, when the Supreme Court ruled in Janus v. AFSCME that public employees could not be forced to join or financially support a union against their will.
Ever since, it’s the name of Mark Janus that enrages union leaders and is cited virtually every day as precedent in a subsequent lawsuit.
But Friedrichs didn’t go quietly into the night. In the years since her battle with CTA became a footnote in history, Friedrichs has become an outspoken critics of government employee unions and and advocate for kids.
In 2020, she an expose of bully unions titled Standing Up to Goliath, which reinforces her own experiences with dozens of powerful personal accounts.
She’s also a Prager University host and, in 2021, founded For Kids and Country, a national movement of citizens uniting to restore our schools and culture.
The organization has produced a film titled “Whose Children Are They?” which it describes as a “groundbreaking and powerfully persuasive documentary featuring brave teachers, empowered parents and front-line experts who pull back the curtain about what is truly happening in our public schools today.”
The film’s purpose is to will inform and equip parents, teachers, grandparents and concerned citizens to partner together for the innocence and well-being of the nation’s children.
“Whose Children are They?” is scheduled to premiere in theaters on March 14.
The film’s trailer and details can be viewed here.