Speculation is swirling around who in the chain of command ordered the Texas State Guard to attend an “extremism stand-down training.”
Knowledge of the training first surfaced on senatorial candidate and Texas State Guardsman Andy Hopper’s website, as reported by WorldTribune. In his remarks, Hopper summed up the event as:
“A case of leadership boldly weaponizing the chain of command to indoctrinate a left-wing political agenda of cultural Marxism, critical race theory, and moral relativism upon Military Forces of the State of Texas.”
Now Hopper and other guardsmen are wondering if Texas Gov. Greg Abbott ordered the “extremism stand-down training” or whether the governor was unaware of it.
WorldTribune confirmed Hopper’s statement that “[t]he reporting structure is complex, but the bottom line is that the State Guard only reports to the Governor of Texas and cannot be federalized.”
Kim Roberts of TheTexan claimed the governor’s office did not respond to questions into the matter. Abbott’s office reportedly referred the inquiry to the Texas Military Department.
Responding to TheTexan, a spokesperson for the department wrote, “[i]t is not standard practice in our agency to notify higher levels of leadership when training the force on standard regulations, policies and basic principles of conduct.”
Related: Don’t mess with Texas: Guardsman challenges Team Biden’s indoctrination of U.S. troops, June 1, 2021
But confusion among the soldiers, evident in an audio recording of the training, means that “standard regulations, policies and basic principles of conduct” would be hard to follow without a definition for extremism or a list of extremist groups. Indeed, such ambiguity could lead to discrepancies and blatantly contrarian policies.
An example, Hopper recalled, was that, “although it wasn’t clear who had the list of extremist organizations, that the NRA was known to be on the list. Troops were reminded that membership in the NRA would not necessarily be extreme, but that fundraising or recruiting members certainly would be.”
With answers like these, plus a variety of materials exclusively targeting right-wing extremists, the training began to sound like less of a learning session and more like a threat.
While it’s unknown if Abbott okayed the training, the message sent to Texas guardsmen is that the state is now kowtowing to the Biden administration and soldiers of traditional cultural, religious, and political frameworks are subject to close scrutiny.
Hopper told WorldTribune: “It seems that the Governor of Texas is doubling down and that our leadership feels that this Biden-initiated extremism training, which paints the political right as extremists and the greatest threat to the state and the country, is indeed consistent with Texas values. Once this indoctrination is normalized, it will become institutionalized."