Note: This article contains coarse language that may offend or disturb some readers.
A new investigation from the controversial Project Veritas purportedly reveals the alleged lengths a teachers union leader in New Jersey will go to protect abusive teachers.
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In the 20-minute video, a Project Veritas staffer approached Dr. David Perry, president of the Hamilton Township Education Association, with a hypothetical situation. The union leader then explained to the woman how he would go about protecting a teacher — her “brother-in-law” — who physically abused and threatened a student.
Perry apparently said he would encourage the teacher to come to him and explain in detail exactly what happened so that the union could then punch holes in the student’s story.
“I need to know the truth,” he explained, “so that we can bend the truth.”
Watch the video below:
The HTEA leader said it’s important to downplay the incident. At one point in the video, Perry told the Project Veritas worker, “We do turn [these reports] around to where, if it was a physical punch, it wasn’t a punch. It was a shove.”
Furthermore, regardless of when the teacher comes to him, Perry said, he will backdate the admission to one day after the alleged encounter with a student:
“I’m gonna strongly advise … [if] the kid’s gonna turn around and say, ‘Well, [the teacher] threatened me’ … I can say, ‘No, no, no, no. On March 22, the day after the incident, [the teacher] came over to me and told me [what happened]. And we just wanted to put it on record so that nothing more would come about it.’
It covers [the teacher] because he came in and reported it right away and that he was afraid … but here’s what happened. Everything else is bulls**t.”
Perry assured the undercover staffer that whatever the teacher might tell him, he keeps it between them. He also said it’s important for the teacher to not share any details about the incident with friends or other teachers.
The HTEA president said he’s “here to defend even the worst people,” later noting he’s worked to protect a teacher with a drug problem and another with a history of shoplifting.
“It’s almost like being a priest,” Perry said. “It’s my job to protect.”
Controversy with Project Veritas
Project Veritas, it should be noted, has faced quite a bit of criticism over the years. Opponents have questioned the “sting” organization’s credibility, and many have taken issue with the group’s tactics.
In 2017, for example, Project Veritas was slapped with a restraining order after trying to infiltrate a teachers union to illegally obtain information about the Michigan organization. A civil complaint about the conservative group claimed it planted an operative who used an alias to get a job at the union to spy on its efforts.
The organization, founded by James O’Keefe, has made a name for itself over the years for its provocative undercover videos targeting different organizations, including Planned Parenthood, CNN, and Twitter, among others.
Many of those videos, though, were later discovered to have been significantly edited.
O’Keefe faced a lot of backlash in the fall of last year after Project Veritas produced an undercover video with a reporter for The Washington Post in which a woman working with the conservative organization falsely claimed to have been impregnated by Roy Moore, who was the Republican Senate candidate in Alabama’s special election.
Brent Bozell, the founder of the conservative Media Research Center, said at the time that O’Keefe should be “condemned” for his efforts at the Post, arguing his tactics are “hurting the conservative movement”:
Regarding WaPo/O’Keefe incident, this was entrapment, & the kind of “gotcha” stunt that should be condemned. If a liberal did this to a conservative outlet, we’d be outraged. Once again, O’Keefe is grandstanding & hurting the conservative movement. I’m glad the Post outed him.
— Brent Bozell (@BrentBozell) November 28, 2017
“If a liberal did this to a conservative outlet, we’d be outraged,” Bozell wrote, adding, “I’m glad the Post outed him.”