Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Middle School Teacher: Stupid

A Kentucky middle school teacher burned two American flags in front of his classes, then instructed them to write an opinion paper and "ask their parents about it".

Dan Holden, who teaches seventh-grade social studies, burned small flags in two different classes Friday and asked students to write an opinion paper about it, district spokeswoman Lauren Roberts said.

The real beauty of this is that everyone is looking around waiting for the other shoe to drop. The ACLU is just squirming for a chance to jump all over this and give that guy a big high-five.

Beth Wilson, director of Kentucky's ACLU, said the district is allowed to decide what's instructionally appropriate.

But "if a school is masking their objections to flag burning under the guise of safety, it raises questions about freedom of speech and academic freedom," she said. She said her group would monitor the case but did not plan to get involved at this point.

The assertion here is ridiculous. Either the school is allowed to say what is instructionally appropriate or they're not - she says one thing, then poses a thinly veiled threat in the next sentence.

Brent McKim, president of the Jefferson County Teachers Association, said Holden has "been teaching for many years, and has by all accounts a good teaching record. It was not a political statement and was meant to illustrate a controversial issue. To fire someone because of that would be inappropriate," he said. "It wasn't like he was taking one side or another."

So...do as I say and not as I do applies? What if the lit up a doobie in front of his kids, to illustrate the controversiality of the illegality of marijauna? It wouldn't have to be him taking a side or anything.

Or how about this -- what if the guy made a little metal cross and a little clay crescent and had the cross beat the crescent into little bitty shards? Or used a lighter with a cross on it to burn a Muslim flag? Is that "taking a side"? Or merely being "thought provoking". Do you think CAIR would rush to defend his right to free "speech"?

The point is that stupidity like this doesn't belong in school. To clarify -- there is nothing wrong with him suggesting his students write an opinion paper on burning the flag, or having a class discussion about it. But doing something like that in the classroom is out of the realm of reason.