COLORADO SPRINGS — A group of parents with students in Colorado Springs School District 11 is becoming more vocal in their concerns regarding social media posts made on the personal, albeit public, accounts of two members of the district’s board of education.
Reverand Al Loma, whose term as a board director began this year and extends until 2023, has made a habit out of publicizing his views against the COVID-19 vaccine.
The post, linked below, appeared on Facebook in December as an apparent repost of one of Loma’s Facebook “Memories.” It seems to suggest that people who receive the COVID-19 vaccine are making themselves vulnerable to government tracking via microchips. The images included in the posting seem to relate “mandatory vaccinations” to “microchip implants,” call “microchip implants” the “mark of the beast,” and suggest “microchip implants” are used for “human tracking.”
In an email exchange, FOX21 News questioned Loma over the significance of the post and asked for his views regarding COVID19, masking policies, and the vaccine for further context.
In response, Loma wrote simply, “Nothing significant. I think the pictures were interesting.”
When FOX21 responded, specifically asking for Loma’s thoughts on whether he believes people who receive the COVID-19 vaccine are at risk of being implanted with microchips, Loma wrote in part:
“I have a Christian orthodox worldview. My values derive from the greatest commandments; love God and love your neighbor. Politically, I am a [sic] constitution driven. Less government and more personal freedom. No mandates from politicians and false Fauci. His science is now proven wrong.”
But, according to the Centers for Disease Control, “Vaccines remain the best public health measure to protect people from COVID-19, slow transmission, and reduce the likelihood of new variants emerging.”
The CDC has acknowledged that breakthrough infections among those who are fully vaccinated are likely, but says, “vaccines have remained effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalizations, and death.”
The organization also notes “COVID-19 vaccines do not contain microchips. Vaccines are developed to fight against disease and are not administered to track your movement.”
Other posts, such as the one below, made on Loma’s Instagram account, have also caused concern among some parents:
Jason Jorgenson, D11 BOE vice president (term 2019-2023), is under similar scrutiny for a post he made on Facebook last year:
The post, which was removed after questioning from FOX21, was a meme showing a frame from the 1970s movie “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.” In it was a smirking Willy Wonka, sipping a cup of tea, alongside text that read: “You keep saying that me not wearing a mask is killing you. It’s been months. How much longer will it take?”
Jorgenson added the following text to caption the meme: “Well…and as our county has been ‘demoted’ to Level Orange. And while there is “bloodshed” according to our Governor. Wake up! #willyoucomply #CourageisContagious”
However, the CDC says, “Masks offer protection against all variants” of COVID-19 and it “continues to recommend wearing a mask in public indoor settings in areas of substantial or high community transmission, regardless of vaccination status.”
FOX21 News asked Jorgenson to comment on the post after a number of parents in the district said they perceived the content as threatening to those who share different opinions.
Without responding to that question specifically, Jorgenson wrote, in part: “…these are my views and the opinions are my own and not of the collective Board of Education or District 11. I’d like to acknowledge that this post is over a year old, so I wonder the intent of asking for a response now. This is also my personal Facebook page and freedom of speech is available to me, like everyone else.”
It should be noted that, in fact, the First Amendment does not apply to social media. It is, instead, a protection against censorship from the government.
When questioned further regarding the perception that he may been seen as threatening to others through his posts, Jorgenson said, “I have nothing further to add,” though he did ask that any parents with concerns reach out to him personally.
Additionally, FOX21 asked the district itself for comment.
A D11 representative wrote: “Just as staff have their personal social media accounts and have posted things expressing their opinions on their personal feeds, so do board members. The comments on personal social media feeds are not reflective of the District’s stance on issues.”
District 11’s Board of Education is comprised of seven members – each one elected “at large from within district boundaries,” per the board manual. It operates separately from district administration.
Included in a list of expectations for board members’ conduct in public – on an individual basis – are the following items:
– Board members will take responsibility for making sure they have complete and accurate
information before relaying facts via any forum.
– If a Board member misspeaks by fact or implication, the Director will correct mistakes.
– Board members will reflect Board and District values at all times.
The full list of duties and responsibilities of board members can be found at this link.
The next D11 Board meeting is set for January 12 at 5:30 p.m. and can be viewed by livestream here.