This post is a follow-up to this story about the banning of President Obama's speech in La Mesa-Spring Valley School District.
San Diego Union-Tribune Editorial
A school board polarized by politics
September 17, 2009
“Resign, resign, resign!” The chant rolled through the auditorium.
On Labor Day, the La Mesa/Spring Valley School Board met to ban live broadcasts of President Barack Obama's nationwide speech to students. It was a meeting called in haste, little publicized and attended by virtually no one. And it angered many. Eight days later, parents packed the auditorium at Parkway Middle School in La Mesa, intent on retribution.
Board President Penny Halgren apologized profusely for her motion to bar the presidential speech. Bob Duff apologized for being the swing vote, and a still-defiant Rick Winet acknowledged only that the board could have done better...
Then the board effectively undid its apology.
Winet seized upon the words in a union official's e-mail (“If you are going to challenge the King, you'd better kill the King” — an often-mangled quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson) to see a death threat. The board authorized use of all legal means against anyone making a personal attack, be it verbal or physical...
Maura Larkins' comment: I don't know who wrote the above editorial but I'm sure it was someone other than the confused and anonymous individual who wrote the following editorial for the same newspaper. This unethical pundit clearly blames the minority trustees for the banning of Obama's speech--when they voted against the measure.
What was the writer of the following editorial thinking?
School board's holiday meeting
San Diego Union Tribune Editorial
September 12, 2009
Mark Twain had some choice words about them: “In the first place, God made idiots. This was for practice. Then he made school boards.”
It's not certifiable that the La Mesa/Spring Valley board members — Penny Halgren, Bob Duff and Rick Winet, the majority, or Emma Turner and Bill Baber, the minority — are idiots, but they sure left themselves open to second-guessing.
[Blogger's note: Shame on the San Diego Union-Tribune for adding the two minority trustees, who, as most school board members across the country, did NOT forbid showing Obama's speech to students. Only the first three people on the list--Winet, Halgren and Duff--left themselves open to "second-guessing."]
...Ami Adkins of El Cajon, parent of an eighth-grader, is unhappy. “Just to put this into context,” she wrote us, “two weeks ago my daughter was taken out of class during school (without my permission) to attend a district-sanctioned sales presentation given by a private corporation, where she was strongly ‘encouraged’ to sell cheap and useless junk (crap) from a magazine in order to pad the school's budget.”
So yes, we were not enthusiastic about the poorly timed broadcast. Neither do we support government censorship decided in a near-empty room on a holiday.
Dunce caps for the electeds do seem in order.
[Maura Larkins' comment: Dunce caps for Winet, Halgren, Duff and the Union Tribune are in order. Emma Turner and Bill Baber are the only board members who behaved well in this matter.]