Lauren Gill, the Mysterious CVUSD School Board Candidate

By Pat Lynch

Lauren Gill

Lauren Gill, Candidate for CVUSD Voting Area 5 (photo from LinkedIn)

Lauren Gill (D) is a candidate for the Conejo Valley School Board this year. She is challenging incumbent Sandee Everett (R), who was elected in 2016. I reported last month about the negative mailer against Everett that was sent by Gill’s organization, Conejo Together, to residents of Newbury Park at the end of July. It is unusual for candidates to send out mailers that early in the campaign season. It is also unusual for candidates to go negative against their opponent so early.

The July mailer sent by Conejo Together was an apparent violation of the Ventura County Code of Fair Campaign Practices, which Gill signed, and which states: “I SHALL NOT USE OR PERMIT the use of character defamation, whispering campaigns, libel, slander, or scurrilous attacks on any candidate or his or her personal or family life.” My article last month details the defamation and disinformation in that mailer. 

CVUSD Trustee Sandee Everett

CVUSD Trustee Sandee Everett

Even if Gill claims that she has resigned her leadership position with Conejo Together, and so she had nothing to do with the mailer, she is still bound by the Code of Fair Campaign Practices to denounce the mailer and Conejo Together. The Code says, “I SHALL IMMEDIATELY AND PUBLICLY REPUDIATE support deriving from any individual or group that resorts, on behalf of my candidacy or in opposition to that of my opponent, to the methods and tactics that I condemn.”

Gill is also a key member of Indivisible: Conejo, the local chapter of the nationwide leftist group Indivisible. The following is a quote from the Indivisible: Conejo mission statement:

“We monitor the efforts and voting records of local city council and school board members who stand (and vote) against progressive values. We work with local, issue-specific advocacy groups, providing visibility and support for causes such as reproductive rights, voting rights, gun safety, climate change and the environment, and comprehensive immigration reform. Additionally, we encourage and support opposition efforts (including candidate recruitment) in congressional and state-assembly districts that neighbor our own.”  

Gill campaigned for Katie Hill, who resigned in disgrace from US Congress in 2019.

Based on her letters, tweets, public comments at board meetings and the Conejo Together mailer, we know what Lauren Gill is against – she is vehemently against Sandee Everett, the incumbent. But what is Lauren Gill for? What policies does she support? This is something of a mystery, since her campaign website seems to steer clear of issues that voters care about,  like reopening our schools, declining enrollment, school closures, “inclusive” sex ed, gender identity in elementary school, and whether or not books on the core literature list with graphic child rape (there are three) should have an asterisk in order to give a head-up to students who are abuse survivors.

Sandee Everett’s website, in contrast, includes blog posts covering her precise positions seemingly on every important topic. Unlike Gill, Everett makes no effort to hide her positions on any subject related to education.

To try to determine Gill’s opinions, I searched through her twitter feed and her letters to the editor in recent years. The following represents the results of that research.

The Book Policy (the aforementioned asterisks next to books with child rape)

Tweet by Gill regarding The Bluest Eye, which has a graphic child rape scene.

Tweet by Gill regarding The Bluest Eye, which has a graphic  scene of a father raping his daughter.

Mrs. Gill has been very outspoken in her criticism of placing asterisks next to books with graphic child rape and other extreme violence. On September 27, 2019, Gill tweeted, “Books are commonly challenged because they are sexually explicit. However, historically people use sex as a code for race. A prime example is the challenges of The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison.” This statement is difficult to comprehend. The Bluest Eye was one of the books that received an asterisk in Everett’s book policy because of a scene that graphically describes a father raping his 9-year-old daughter. Rape is not sex, but rather it is abusive violence and its depiction could traumatize student readers who are rape survivors (and there are a lot of them). In a letter to the Acorn editor, Gill stated, “Red-flagging books is censorship. Elections have consequences. A remedy is available Nov. 6, 2018.” Indeed Gill achieved the remedy she desired. All three of the Conejo Together candidates were elected in 2018 giving the local left a new majority on the school board. One of their first orders of business was removing the asterisks next to the rapey books.

Inclusiveness

Lauren Gill's 2019 Tweet supporting using 1619 Project as curriculum in CVUSD

Lauren Gill’s 2019 Tweet supporting using 1619 Project as curriculum in CVUSD

Inclusiveness is a concept that appears frequently in Gill’s writings, and also appears on her website without explanation. Her website states, “When I make decisions, I will do so with equity and inclusion in mind.” Although Gill does not explain what this means to her, in more than one tweet she, for example, expresses support for incorporating the 1619 Project into CVUSD curriculum. The 1619 Project is a New York Times project that revisits American history through the lens of slavery. The main idea is that America wasn’t founded in 1776 with the Declaration of Independence, nor in 1620 with the landing of the pilgrims, nor even in 1607 with the settlement of Jamestown, but rather in 1619 with the arrival of the first African slave. Many school districts around the country have adopted the 1619 Project as part of their history curriculum, even though it is widely criticized by historians as revisionist and inaccurate. The work was apparently intended by the editors as an ongoing multimedia commentary work, not necessarily factual history that would be used as curriculum. On September 18, 2019, Gill stated on social media, “What say we @ConejoValleyUSD? Shall we join Chicago and teach the #1619Project in our high schools?”

Reopening the Schools

Lauren Gill’s only mention of reopening the schools is in the following tweet on May 18th, “Decision-making on reopening our schools is local, but I appreciate that this report’s recommendations are research-validated and equity insistent.” This tweet is troubling because it appears that Gill believes that reopening the schools needs to not only wait until they are safe from COVID-19, but also that reopening should also wait until Gill’s desired equity curriculum is in place. It may have not been her intent, but this tweet reinforces the widely held belief that there is a political component to the lockdown.

Gill's tweet that equity curriculum should be prerequisite for reopening the schools.

Gill’s tweet that equity curriculum should be a prerequisite for reopening the schools.

Religion

Despite being a Religious Studies major at Brown University, Mrs. Gill has shown open hostility toward religion here in our community. On April 5th, in response to a local church offering in-person communion to its members on Palm Sunday, despite the lockdown order, Gill criticized the move as “anti-life.” This is ironic, given Gill’s support of abortion rights.

In July and August of 2019, Gill tweeted support for two #EmptyThePews tweets. The first one stated that white evangelicals represent the greatest threat to democracy and human rights in this country today. The other tweet stated that the moral and religious convictions of evangelicals are bigotry. 

Lauren Gill agrees that evangelicals are the greatest threat to democracy and human rights.

Lauren Gill agrees that evangelicals are the greatest threat to democracy and human rights.

Hopefully, as election day nears, more information will be available regarding Gill’s positions and her campaign promises if she wins her race against Everett. The voters need to know more about what Gill believes and what she would do as a school board member if her campaign is successful. Reviewing a Twitter feed is not nearly enough to fully understand a candidate.

 

 

 

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Citizens Journal.


Pat Lynch is a resident of Ventura County


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Martin Burkard
Martin Burkard
8 months ago

How do these people get elected??!!

Allison
Allison
9 months ago

Come on people. Protect our kids. GET all these left radicals (aka progressives) OUT OF OUR SCHOOLS! This is sick. Stick together and fight them. If not, my child will be home schooled. These people are PURE EVIL, every single last one of them. Vote RED on everything…GO! Great thank you to Citizen’s Journal and thank you Pat Lynch!

Last edited 9 months ago by Allison
Iris Parker
Iris Parker
9 months ago

The people from this publication, along with the Conejo Ga., are *not* journalists. These publications are propaganda and do not adhere to any kind of journalistic integrity. Please find your news elsewhere.

Citizen Reporter
Admin
9 months ago
Reply to  Iris Parker

You did notice that it is a third party editorial, CLEARLY marked as such, right?

If you are reading “mainstream newspapers,” you may not even know the difference.

Allison
Allison
9 months ago
Reply to  Iris Parker

Really Iris? Are the tweets from this nut not true as well? I already saw the newest book that just got approved into Core Lit. Its SICK. about hate, division, and racism. YOU ARENT PUTTING THAT JUNK INTO THE SCHOOLS.

Caleb Standafer
Caleb Standafer
10 months ago

Lauren Gill refused to answer questions from a reporter for the Conejo Guardian. That is the opposite of transparency. We need a person on the school board who will state their views clearly, and ask probing questions of the school administrators. Sandee Everett has the experience and the temperament to represent Area 5 on the CVUSD school board.

Ed Reed
Ed Reed
10 months ago

I’ve lived in Newbury Park for over 20 years and these kinds of characterizations are ridiculous. We need progressive candidates like Lauren Gill to prevent the neophytes from holding us back from the promise of a greater future. Stop with these ludicrous claims of “rapey books” and asterisks. The only way we can move forward to a better future is to learn from our past mistakes and try not to repeat them. Hiding from them or locking them away in a closet serves no useful purpose. Neither does opening our schools before it’s safe to do so. No on Sandee, Yes on Gill.

Allison
Allison
9 months ago
Reply to  Ed Reed

Not true, I’ve seen the other hate racist book they are bringing in now. These leftist are off the chain. You have NO business doing any of this to any of our children and we will DO something ABOUT IT.

Mike Smith
Mike Smith
10 months ago

“HOW DID THESE PEOPLE, THREE TO ONE, GET VOTED INTO OFFICE?”

1. NONVOTING Republicans who had a chance.

2. Voting Democrats who should have never had a chance.

3. Third-Party fools, including Libertarian Party voters, who helped the Democrats get elected (whether they intended to or not).

4. The 85%+ probability this cycle will repeat no matter what.

William Hicks
William Hicks
10 months ago

I’ve lived in Newbury Park for over 35 years. In all that time I never have experienced any neighbors that would knowingly vote this kind of person in an office that represents Gill’s views.

HOW DID THESE PEOPLE, THREE TO ONE, GET VOTED INTO OFFICE?