Dr. Wesley Smith, Superintendent of California’s Morgan Hill Unified School District and ‘self-proclaimed expert’ gave a petulant and incoherent performance on behalf of his administration and School Board for the now infamous anti-American Flag discrimination against Live Oak High School students by their Principal Nick Boden and his Assistant Principal Miguel Rodriguez on May 5th.
Supt. Smith claims the incident was “not about whether our students can wear patriotic clothing,” but was “about ensuring that our campus was orderly and safe.”
Any school superintendent, staff or school board that determines its students wearing patriotic American clothing should ever be deemed ‘disorderly’, or ‘unsafe’ is an incompetent superintendent, staff and board.
Bad acting as Special Champion during his “apology,” Supt. Smith repeatedly exploited his High School student-body-at-large as somehow the victim of evil unnamed straw men, i.e., politically motivated “bloggers, talk shows and social networks [e.g., Twitter].”
Ignoring the American Flag behind him, he scolded in PC-mode about “race, relationships, how to get along, solidarity and peace,” and demeaned the free speech of citizens that cast the light of truth and justice upon his administration’s own injustice.
Supt. Smith failed, or refused to mention even once the importance of American patriotism education. He failed to commend the students that spoke truth to unjust government power.
In so doing, his mismanagement keeps the District’s students, parents, teachers, community members and School Board in the national spotlight. He failed to man up and provide a simple, honest apology that accepts full responsibility, without equivocation and offensive blame-shifting.
The lesson here is not, as Dr. Smith stated, “to turn down the rhetoric and turn up the listening.” The lesson is that American patriotism and inculcating patriotic values in students are both good things and should be strongly encouraged — not undermined — in public schools on a daily basis.
All too many educators (not to be confused with teachers) have abandoned professionalism and the business of actually educating students, instead they kowtow to groupthink, and the viewpoint discrimination veiled in Orwellian linguistic deceits such as “Tolerance,” “Diversity,” “Multiculturalism/Global Citizenship” (a.k.a., “America=racist/sexist/bigot/oppressor, etc.”).
Presumably, some MHUSD school board members such as Board Trustee President Bart Fisher et al. and District legal counsel collaborated and approved of Dr. Smith’s public statement. They should be held accountable at any disciplinary reviews and election time.
Supt. Smith has a dubious history with the education system’s modern culture of discrimination. According to the Anderson Valley Post, Dr. Smith resigned in disgrace last November from Cascade Union Elementary School District in Anderson, California for, among other things, a Special Education discrimination lawsuit.
Regarding Dr. Smith’s scolding of bloggers, talk-shows and social networks (to which upwards of 90% of his community belong, including Board President Fisher: he seemed like a John Edwards would in complaining about the National Enquirer; or a Bill Clinton lamenting the lost journalistic discretion in the JFK/Marilyn Monroe era; or even how some Fourth Estate watchdogs puzzle and decry the clichéd biases of the so-called ‘state-controlled’ media; or President Obama’s recent odd criticism, “information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment, rather than a tool of empowerment, rather than the means of emancipation.”
Welcome to a wonderful 21st century teachable moment Dr. Smith, wherein your incompetence — for which you’re receiving a $190,000 payment package — your patriotism (or lack thereof) and personal agenda are now on full display for the entire world.
In Spring, Texas – Klein Collins High School Associate Principals Shellie Dick and Steven Matheson suspended student Nick Morris for three days because he removed and disposed of an unlawfully displayed Mexican flag from a walkway railing in the school’s main hall.
- Title 4 United States Code, 7 [Flag Code] states:
(c) No person shall display the flag of the United Nations or any other national or international flag equal, above, or in a position of superior prominence or honor to or in place of the flag of the United States.
Atta boy Nick, way to speak truth to power!
Finally, a Santa Rita, California art teacher derided as “offensive” a middle-school student’s drawing of an American Flag with the words ‘God Bless America’ on it, while in the same class the teacher praised another student’s portrait of President Obama. The art teacher stubbornly refused to explain when asked by the student and her parents what was “offensive” about her Flag drawing.
The discrimination against this child is so wrong. Just last year, in a nationally televised public school assembly to hundreds of young students, President Obama proclaimed in front of Old Glory herself, “God Bless America.”
Perhaps our President can now contribute to this teachable moment by proudly and publicly reinforcing the meaning, heritage and significance of what our Flag stands for, and the importance of inculcating those patriotic values upon our public school educators.
The students in these stories are way ahead them.