A reader reports that he can’t pull up Ethics Alarms on Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge. Is anyone else having this problem?
Wasn’t it nice when we naively assumed that such things were just technical glitches and not part of Big Tech’s increasingly intrusive alliance with the totalitarian-minded forces of the extreme Left?
1. Embrace the narrative. “Louisiana Congressman-elect Luke Letlow dies with COVID-19” is just one of many headlines announcing that the 41-year-old Representative-elect died from the Wuhan virus. So far, every headline I’ve seen is some version of this. Letlow died of a heart attack, in fact, during some un-named procedure related to his treatment for the virus. People die of unexpected heart attacks with some frequency during hospital procedures for other problems, and the cause of death is usually listed as “heart attack.” Maybe the virus caused his death and maybe it didn’t, but the headlines stating this as fact is more pandemic fearmongering, and. yes, fake news.
2. Good. You will recall that Twitter censored The New York Post’s account of the incriminating Hunter Biden laptop being found because it claimed that the business memos, photos of a Hunter using illegal drugs, and other disturbing photos came from a “hacker,” when Twitter’s real objective was, it seems fair to conclude, to keep as many people as possible from learning about matters that might cause them not to vote for Hunter’s father. Now the computer repair company’s owner is suing Twitter for $500,000,000.00 for libel, defamation, and ruining his business, claiming that the social media giant disparaged him.
3. One more reason to distrust the election results: President Donald Trump topped former President Barack Obama for the title of most admired man in America in Gallup’s 2020 survey. Trump had tied with Obama in 2019 while Obama beat him in 2017 and 2018. President Joe Biden came in third. Obama had been #1 since 2008.
Don’t you find this strange?
In a June 30 decision, B.L v. Mahanoy Area School District, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a Pennsylvania high school violated a cheerleader’s First Amendment rights when it kicked the young woman off the squad for a message she had posted on SnapChat. A distruct court judge had ruled last year for the ex-cheerleader, whose post pictured the teen and her friend holding up their middle fingers accompanied by the eloquent sentiment , “fuck school fuck softball fuck cheer fuck everything.” She was upset because she had only made the junior varsity cheerleading squad, rather than the varsity team.
The ACLU of Pennsylvania argued the case for the girl, so at least sometimes the organization still puts its partisan politics aside to do its traditional job of looking out for the First Amendment. The group called the ruling a “landmark decision,” finally barring schools from policing students’ off-campus speech using the claim that it might disrupt school activities.
The Supreme Court decision on campus speech, Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District, did not apply to off-campus speech. Tinker held that student speech could be regulated by schools only if it would substantially disrupt school operations or interfere with the rights of others. That case involved a school disciplining students when they wore black armbands to class as a protest against the Vietnam War.
The 3rd Circuit majority ruled .“We hold today that Tinker does not apply to off-campus speech—that is, speech that is outside school-owned, -operated or -supervised channels and that is not reasonably interpreted as bearing the school’s imprimatur,”
Because the teen’s speech was outside the school context, Tinker did not apply. The cheerleader’s speech “lies beyond the school’s regulatory authority,” the court said.
The ACLU’s press release stated that the decision was important “because it recognizes that students who are outside of school enjoy full free speech rights, not the diluted rights they have inside the schoolhouse.”
Finally. Continue reading
Chapter I: In Georgia, two Carrollton High School seniors made a truly cretinous video. Filmed in a bathroom, the male and female students students pretend to be doing a cooking show as they pour cups of water into the sink.
Showing their faces in the mirror, she announces, “Hey, today we’re making…”as the camera aims at the sink where there’s a piece of notebook paper with “niggers” written on it. The male student intones the word. The male student lifts cups of water and pours each one into the sink, over the paper. Under each cup is a piece of paper with the name of an “ingredient” written on it, which the young woman reads.
“First we have ‘black,'” she says. He then pours the cup of water into the sink over the paper with the slur. “Next we have, ‘Don’t have a dad!'” Other ingredients include “eating watermelon and fried chicken” and “rob people.”
“Specifically whites,” guy adds as he refills the “robs people” cup over and over using the sink tap. One cup labeled “make good choices” is empty. The couple feign surprise over the cup having nothing in it.
Once their opus was complete, the couple was so proud that they posted it online.
Why this is discouraging: In what alternate universe would anyone from the age of seven up think something like that would be acceptable to publicize? What kind of polluted culture is being fostered in Carollton? What are they teaching in the schools?
Even passing on that, how could anyone be so stupid as to think posting an overly racist video wouldn’t have serious consequences? Again, who is teaching critical thinking in that community? What have the parents been doing for 17 years, getting stoned? Continue reading
“Look, Mom! Billy has a cool crossbow!”
In the first weeks of compelled distance learning in many school districts, schools encountered many issued that should have been anticipated but were not.
One student at Montgomery County, Maryland’s Albert Einstein High School horrified officials—I haven’t been able to determine what the students thought–by showing a gun. The gun was legally purchased’ the gun wasn’t loaded. No threats were made. Nonetheless , the school seemed to think that it had authority and leave to take action.
Montgomery County Public Schools Spokesperson Gboyinde Onijala told local news media that the school system is not going to tolerate anything online they wouldn’t allow in the classroom.
“For any student of ours who thinks, ‘Oh because it’s online learning, there aren’t disciplinary actions they can take,’ and they actually have that wrong. And as we spelled out very clearly to our message to the community this morning,” said Onijala. Indeed, now the school system says it will be taking disciplinary action, though Montgomery County Police announced that they did not charge the 17-year-old who displayed the weapon.
Gee, that’s comforting. Thanks, Big Brother! Exactly what would the police charge the student with? I don’t think the school has any basis to discipline the student either, and if I was the student’s parent, I would not accept any punishment at all from that source, or the police, of course. The option of punishments would be mine, because the offense occurred on my turf, the offense being handling my gun. Continue reading
In California, that land of the not-so-free and home of the submissive, four high school students were suspended for “liking” Instagram posts that the school administrators deemed racist. Now they have sued the school.
This has to stop.
The students, three of them Asian, were suspended after school officials were informed that they had “liked” or briefly commented on Instagram posts that included an image of a black doll juxtaposed with a KKK member, a torch and a noose, and photographs of other students at the school with jokes about their weight and appearance. Let us settle this right now: it doesn’t matter if the images and posts “liked’ advocated incest, cannibalism or Republicans. It is not the school’s role to punish students for thought crimes. This was not a school website, and the posts did not take place on school grounds. This is Big Brotherism, and the fact that the students involved need to be guided and taught does not mean crushing them under the iron boot of the state was appropriate or responsible.
Albany High School explained it was merely trying to provide “an inclusive and respectful learning environment for all of our students.” Translation: We want all our students to absorb our politically correct, mandated beliefs, and there is no escaping our power.
Students have a right to express their own views, however misguided, in their private lives. Students have a right to hold views San Francisco progressives find offensive. If the school can punish students for “liking” a racist image, it can, and I assume will, eventually punish students who like President Trump. Or Ethics Alarms. Or Ayn Rand. Or veal. Continue reading
In Cincinnati, Ohio, a first-grader at Our Lady of Lourdes school, just six-years old, was pretending to be a Power Ranger during recess, and “shot” another student with an imaginary bow and arrow. Principal Joe Crachiolo suspended the 6-year-old student for three days.
Denying the parents’ pleas to reconsider, Crachiolo sent a letter home to parents stating in part:
“I have no tolerance for any real, pretend, or imitated violence. The punishment is an out of school suspension.” Continue reading
1. After a 48 hour review, Ben Fields, the school resource officer who was caught on camera violently flipping the desk of a disruptive South Carolina high school student, was fired for violating police department policy. Naturally, he and his lawyer claim otherwise, but that’s just posturing for the inevitable union challenge. He had to be fired for many reasons, including terrible optics and bad judgment. The worst of the defenses offered for his conduct was that the girl, treated like a professional wrestler by the much larger male officer, wasn’t injured. If true, that was pure moral luck: from the violent nature of the arrest, it is a miracle he didn’t break her neck. (The student’s lawyer claims that her arm is broken, among other injuries.)
2. The news media immediately declared this a racial incident. The New York Times, for example, began a report like this:
A white sheriff’s deputy in South Carolina was fired Wednesday after county officials concluded he had acted improperly when, in a videotaped confrontation, he dragged and then threw a female African-American student across a high school classroom this week.
I can find no evidence that race had anything to do with this incident, unless one accepts the Black Lives Matter assertion that the colors of participants in black-white confrontations prove that the white individual is a racist and the black individual is a helpless victim who has no racial biases whatsoever. Continue reading
Colorado’s Pueblo County High School went into lockdown for almost two hours because students and teachers freaked out over a female student wearing a trench coat and gas mask as a Halloween costume.The student was searched by authorities and not found to be carrying any weapons, and told staff at the school that her outfit was a Halloween costume, admittedly a bit early.
Alarmed students told teachers, teachers and administrators dragged the girl into the office to be interrogated. District 70 Superintendent Ed Smith said, “They reported immediately to a teacher what was happening…we could react quickly because of those students. When being questioned, the student said it was nothing more than a Halloween prank, but again, because of the world we live in now, we take all those kinds of things very seriously.”
Believe it or not, a SWAT team was called in and swept the school to ensure it was safe, because terrorists always signal their intent by wearing gas masks and trench coats.
The student is facing expulsion.
Rueful observations: Continue reading
Left: Potentially harmful to the academic environment. Right: A positive influence on students’ behavior.
Proposition: Any educational system that can produce a headline like this…
Girl suspended from school for wearing wrong shade of green
…needs help desperately.
Or to be torn down and reconceived completely. I am tending toward the latter.
The headline is in fact correct. Winslow Township Elementary School No. 4 sent an eight-year old girl home for wearing a Kelly green polo shirt, which was deemed to be in violation of the Camden County (New Jersey) school’s dress code, decreeing that shirts and blouses may only be white, navy blue, or dark green. This is important, for as the Winslow Township School’s code on dress and grooming points out “school attire can influence a pupil’s behavior and potentially impact the academic environment.”
This kind of mindless autocratic abuse of children causes them to become cynical, angry, submissive, fearful, distrustful of adults, or contemptuous of authority, none of which are good. The President of the United States, since he appears to be in the business of addressing local school wrongs, could perform a service by humiliating these cruel, dim-bulb administrators and their many equivalents by inviting this victimized young lady to the White House. But then she’s not a Muslim, or dark skinned, or a kid who pretended to invent something when he didn’t, so forget it.
I’m sorry I mentioned it.