U.S. Rep. Bob Good (R-VA) encouraged a group of local high school students last week to not wear masks in school, saying during his visit the administration “can’t stop everyone.” He also told them it was up to them to “rise up” against the government’s vaccine mandates.
Good, who represents Virginia’s 5th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives, spoke to a Rappahannock County High School government class of about 20 students on Thursday after their teacher, Tim Stockdale, invited him to speak. The event last Thursday was originally supposed to take place in the high school auditorium, but after Good refused to wear a mask, administrators moved it outdoors to the football stadium.
[Luke Christopher, Rappahannock News]
Good’s appearance was moved to the football field after he refused to wear a mask inside the school. In the battle of Republican government officials and school administrators, the home team clearly has the advantage. The Virginia Department of Public Health is mandating that all students, teachers, staff, and visitors in K-12 schools wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status.
After Unhinged Extremist Rep. Bob Good (R-VA05) “Blasts all colleges except Christian ones,” “urges high school students to rebel against required mask wearing,” Former Rep. Denver Riggleman (R-VA05) Says “I might need to re-engage”https://t.co/AynSHfDis9
— Debbie 🇺🇸 😷 (@debbiez49) October 16, 2021
According to local news coverage, Good’s speech included misinformation about masks and vaccines, saying that President Joe Biden and Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, both Democrats, are “lying to us about the effectiveness of masks.” Good said there is “no scientific evidence” that proves the efficacy of masks, and that COVID-19 vaccines pose more of a health risk to teenagers than the virus itself.
I graduated from Rappahannock County High School in 2013. I am livid that Rapp High had GOP Rep. Bob Good speaking to students earlier. He went on this diatribe against COVID mitigation measures, banning all abortions, etc. He even told the kids to defy school mask mandates! 🤬
— Trevor "Trev" McKee Achilles (@MrTAchilles) October 17, 2021
Good also talked about his pro-life positions, according to the Rappahannock News, saying that “science says life begins at conception” and that he’d like to eliminate all abortions if he could. He told the students that colleges and universities — outside of faith-based Christian schools — are “going to try and change what you believe” because they are “dominated by the left.”
DANGEROUS AND IRRESPONSIBLE 😡 ‘They Can’t Stop Everyone’: GOP Congressman Dangerously Encourages Kids to Defy Statewide School Mask Mandate
Rep. Bob Good (R-Va.) spread anti-vaxx lies and other Covid-19 information while speaking to a high school government class😳
— PaTresha🐢🌊💙PresidentJoe💙 (@PaTresha10) October 17, 2021
According to the paper, masking in Rappahannock schools was initially contentious this year, with the School Board originally ruling to not require the practice. Many parents and school personnel spoke out at meetings in opposition to the idea of mask mandates. One board member was against Good’s appearance, saying a public school shouldn’t host political candidates.
Oh look Bob Good is still trash 🚮 https://t.co/poDT5jskGo
— Richmond Neoliberals 🌐🎃 (@RVANeoliberal) October 17, 2021
Meanwhile, the high school Principal Carlos Seward was in attendance at the event, and said Good gave a presentation to the students which “reflected his own values”. Despite Good’s controversial stances, “Being able to expose students to different worldviews is important on both sides,” Seward said. “We don’t endorse one way or the other.”