Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I'm Doing Exactly What They Asked Me Not To Do

     Last month I started a post like this: You Can Never Go Home Again. And when you want to run as far away as possible from home, you can't really do that either. That's just one more problem with home.
     I had decided not to continue with it, because I didn't have nice things to say, and the downward spiral was going pretty damn fast. About a week or so ago a video went viral: the one of Graeme Taylor giving a speech to the Howell Public School board. Graeme decided he should stand up for the teacher who he felt stood up for kids like him. Graeme has a few things to say about what a rotten place Howell is. I grew up there; I agree with Graeme.
     The school board is pretty damn tired of getting harassed by people who feel the school board sucks. Their letter to the "community" is here:  Superintendent's statement regarding recent events.  He correctly identifies the harassment as ironic.  (I used quotes for community because I feel it is more a loosely bound group of rednecks than a real community.)
     It would be nice to know the facts, but because the events unfurled in front of teenagers, we will never know the facts.  (Yes, because teenagers are unreliable.)  The thing is though, even without the facts, I still think Graeme makes a damn good point.  The reason he so easily paints Howell as being "bigoted, racist, and homophobic" is because it has spent its entire history being just that.  It feels (or at least felt) that every time progress was made, some jackass ruined it for everyone by being stupid but claiming it was their right to be so.  Congratulations, you have the right to be stupid, and you'll die in Howell, most likely from a hunting accident. 
     I love rules more than most people do, or probably should.  So the teacher probably did break a policy and should then be properly disciplined.  But really, really, I dont think that's the problem.  I think the problem began much earlier than that, and it is the groundwork for perpetuating the bigotry, racism, and homophobia rampent in Howell.  The smart people get out, and the rest just breed.    

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