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Follow-Up: Protecting Soldier's Kids

| 52 Comments | 7 TrackBacks

This is a follow up and backfill to Joe's post. First, I originally saw this article as an item over on the FreeRepublic.com web site. Then I called around and e-mailed and found that there are similar cases happening to military kids in Texas and Kansas as well.

This is what the Maine National Guard sent to the parents of one of the victimized children:

""Thank you for your interest on this most troubling matter. Our Family Assistance Centers have reported cases from Aroostook County to Southern Maine. We are reluctant to give out specific schools and the individuals involved in the interest of giving the education community a chance to address the problem itself. Also, parents wanted the opportunity to pursue the issue through their local school boards first.

In all, we have over thirty complaints that name schools and individual principals, teachers and guidance counselors. If one considers that these complaints come from just the parents who attended our briefings and only from children who told their parents, we are concerned that the problem may be more widespread than we know.

We are recording the complaints, and I will ly visit these educators to express our concern as a professional organization and ask for their cooperation.

Ultimately, our main concern and first responsibility is the safety of our children during these uncertain times. Maine has a core of dedicated and professional educators, but we will challenge any individual who places our children at risk due to their own political ideologies.""


The folks over on the Free Republic are already doing media outreach on this story with the various conservative talk radio outlets and with the Fox News Channel. Myself, I have contracted my various e-mail lists and alerted some fellow bloggers. So this issue is being addressed.

Backing up and taking a wider view, what we are seeing here are the wages of the utopians being counted out.

Thoreau once said something to the effect that "Far better that you be robbed by the basest villain than be helped by someone coming to "do good" for you. For there is no evil the self-righteous will not descend to in order to "do good" by their lights."

The true evil of the Anti-American Left is that they see America as evil and _anything_ they do to oppose it as virtuous. Soldier's kids are not real to them, save as symbols in their utopian fantasy ideology.

I have an acquaintance in the Marin Country California ACLU from one of my e-mail "list of usual suspects" worked up enough about it that he forwarded the Free Republic text to local school boards with a broad outline of the liability implications for the school districts if their teachers are caught doing it.

He also sent me the following:

""...[o]f all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

—Montana Supreme Court in Gryczan v. Montana, 1996, striking down that state’s sodomy law.

...with the observation that while the above was aimed at the 'blue noses' on the Right. It applied just as much to those on the left.

He has a point.

The difference between the righteous and the self-righteous is the former are humble with their own judgements, will listen to reason, and know that evil means taken to achieve a noble end may corrupt the result.

The self-righteous are as vain as Satan about their righteousness, and just as evil in their pursuit of it.

The Anti-American radical Left has become the caricature of the self-righteous Right they claim to hate.

7 TrackBacks

Tracked: February 25, 2003 8:31 PM
This is downright shameful from Untergeek.com
Excerpt: Read Winds of Change's, archives, here and here. To sum up: 7 to 9 year olds in Maine public schools
Tracked: February 25, 2003 10:46 PM
Sickening. Truly Sickening. from Bushtit Dot Com
Excerpt: This post and this follow-up post at Windsofchange.net really make me want to puke. Public school teachers are now harrassing
Tracked: February 25, 2003 11:27 PM
You Give Peace a Bad Name from Life in the Zu
Excerpt: Distrubing news coming from the Maine National Guard Family Assistance Center that 30 complaints have been filed alledging that teachers and principals have begun harrassing the children of delpoyed soldiers. Winds of Change.net is following the story ...
Tracked: February 26, 2003 12:12 AM
Leftie Hypocrisy Watch from cut on the bias
Excerpt: Apparently teachers in Maine who are anti-war are making it their business to tell the children of deployed National Guardsmen
Tracked: February 26, 2003 12:58 AM
The Sleet's In! from Sgt. Stryker's Daily Briefing
Excerpt: Last night it started to sleet here in Dallas shortly before I started my drive home. My normal commute time is about 25 minutes, 40 minutes if traffic is really bad. Last night it took me over 2 hours to cover the 13.5 miles home.
Tracked: February 26, 2003 1:55 AM
Protecting the Kids of our Servicemen from The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler
Excerpt: The battle ain't over yet, Loyal Citizens. Children all over the country, not just in Maine, are still being mercilessly
Tracked: February 26, 2003 2:54 PM
Excerpt: Imagine how you would feel In this situation: You are in the military and have been deployed to the Gulf,

52 Comments

What will cost big bucks for the school systems involved is not liability for damages, but compliance with the injunctive relief, which will entail teacher training in things like "have a clue" and "get a life", plus oversight committees which have to be paid, etc. For at least 10-15 years.

It would be a lot cheaper for the school districts to file the idiot perpetrators but they won't, as their mission is to provide employment for the staff, not educate the children who are required to attend.

Mr. Trelenko,
Could you cite or link to evidence of what is happening in Kansas and Texas [and elsewhere]? I have already forwarded the Maine cases to my Congress-critter [who is on the Armed Services Committee] at high volume. Further information will be forwarded as soon as it can be confirmed. I have my doubts about the parents effectively taking on the teachers individually [even through the courts], or the willingness of Congress-critters by themselves to take on the teachers, or the media [FOX News, where are you?] by themselves. But a combination of all three would be more than the sum of the parts.

I submit that all readers should be screaming to their Congress-Critters and stirring up as much media interest as possible. NO QUARTER!

Please keep us updated.

"Subotai Bahadur"

I am a fifth grade teacher in Virginia and I am appalled at this report. If it is true, then these teachers need to be reprimanded and owe an apology to the students and their parents.

Incidents like these do not help those of us in teaching who are sensitive to the situations and needs of our students. I not only have students whose parents are in the military and have been called up, but I have several Muslim children from Pakistan and Afghanistan. Talk about having to walk a tightrope. Since we are not far from the Pentagon and much of our school population is military, I have to watch the war talk so that the Muslim children are not offended.

Although I am a parent of a naval aviator and I support the administration's position on Iraq, I certainly do not express those views in the classroom. I believe that my position is to let the children voice their opinions in a respectful way.

The parents of those children, if they have not already done so, need to report these incidents to their local school board.

Sincerely,

Mrs. Lea Hankamer
Woodbridge, Virginia

Ranting is not enough. Provide the names, email addresses and/or telephone numbers of people who should be held responsible, such as education administrators with authority over these teachers.

Trent, could you give me further information on the Kansas cases? I'm steamed.

--Mark

Please email me all the specifics possible re any such situation in Kansas.

Please do everything you can to insure these persons are exposed for what they have done. Public humiliation is only a small price to pay for their actions versus the pain they possibly have inflicted on these kids.

To All The Best of the Web visitors:

The current cases I am aware are from friends on military affairs mailing lists I subscribe too. Neither they nor their impacted friends wants to handle this in the public.

This is a common response from active duty military parents to this sort of thing. They and their kids have to live there after the media event is over. They don't want to make waves. Especially when they will be gone in a couple of years.

Please remember public education bureaucracies don't respond well to military parents for the simple reason they are transient. They don't have the connections in the local community necessary to influence local education politics.

This makes petty vengence on military kids a very high pay off activity for the self-righteous Left in public education positions. And they have done so in the past and will do this again, once people are not looking.

The difference in Maine is that they went after military people in the National Guard. Who by definition have very deep roots in their community and won't be leaving any time soon.

"...[o]f all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive..."

The Montana court was quoting C.S. Lewis's novel "That Hideous Strength."

Just a nit, but the C.S. Lewis quote is actually from his essay, "The Humanitarian Theory of Punishment" (Res Judicatae, June 1953).

I just asked my son, a high school senior at Leavenworth High School, (and son of my husband, a retired Army officer) if any of his teachers had mentioned anythin about the military or war being bad. He looked at me and said, Mom, more than half my teachers are retired military!
I forgot somehow!

Point taken, Trent. However, to let a child's welfare, ANY child's welfare, be left to this sort of assault without comment, let alone consequence, is reprehensible. This is directly and demonstrably inimical to those kids' emotional and psychological health, to say nothing of their faith and belief in their parents' worth and family structure. I would have no problem holding sources harmless, but to allow any individual's political perspective trump the emotional and psychological welfare of a single child in their care is less than contemptible. It should be criminal, and in any other context would be held so in the minds of those who are perpetrating this abomination.

I have no problem with a teacher having a political opinion and expressing it, regardless of whether or not I share it (and I don't) -- honest and well-conceived dissent is the very bedrock of our system. However, a primary-school classroom with the children of those involved in this deployment is neither the time nor the place. Furthermore, those teachers doing this kind of thing KNOW what they're doing to the kids, which makes this behavior nothing more than intentionally petty and destructive.

Please rethink your position -- in this case, it REALLY is "For The Children™"

--Mark

Trent,

I can understand the military wanting to stay low key, but that attitude encourages the problem.

By keeping "low key" the teachers and administrators are able to keep their jobs and don't suffer any consequences for their actions.

If I could, I would advise anyone whose child suffered such abuse to demand the school fire the offender immediately or the parents will go public.

The Anti-American left routinely pushes for a teacher to be fired for mentioning their religious beliefs or not believing in Darwinism. They need to learn that two can play at that game.

The Maine stories told of teachers harassing the children of National Guardsmen who had been called up. These people are not transient - they are a permanent part of the community they live in. If the school boards don't listen to them, they won't listen to anyone. (Not that it would surprise me.)

Children hardly need the sort of protection that uses them for a bandstand for such awful language, Mr. Telenko. You are as much or more the criminal in this situation for voicing such awful words on hearsay, and ignoring the words of the National Guard you quoted.

To assume they are automatically guilty makes you more 'un-American' than the 'evil' 'left' that you espouse.

If you know a child whose parent is being called up or sent overseas, give them some love and tell them you appreciate their parents service. It's tough on families and they need our support. You don't have to support the war , but please support the children.

Crissa,

My direct experiance with public school administrators and teachers is that they lie and leave children in abusive sitations as they see fit.

When my father attended a staff college in Norfolk Virginia in the late 1970's, the local schools were under court ordered desegrigation. The children of the officers attending this college were bussed to an inner city school in leu of local kids. Since the military kids were mostly white and they had military impact aid money attached. This was perfect from the POV of local politics.

The children of military dependents were beaten almost every day by the locals, including in class with teachers present.

The teachers did nothing.

The school administrators did nothing.

Except they both lied to parents when their kids complained. I know, I saw them do it with me.

And since the military kids were there only for the six month tour their parents had at the staff college. They got away with it.

If memory serves, the military wives eventually organized and got the word out such that the military built their own school for the kids to avoid the problem in the first instance.

So understand, I would believe hearsay from a military member or dependent before I would believe direct testimony from a public school administrator sworn on a bible in a court of law.

What a load of BS. One see's no names, no evidence, nothing to support the charges. Names of the teachers please. You folks are swallowing this hook line and sinker.

Xiaoding,

Video is here: http://www.iac.net/~crawford/WABI-edited.WMV

of course it could be a hoax, it's amazing what people can do on the internet today......

I am a reporter for the Fox News Channel's web site, Foxnews.com and am doing a story on this. I would love to speak with anyone with information or first-hand experience with this type of activity going on in schools here. Or, if you are a concerned citizen and/or teacher with any views on this, I would love to hear them. My email is liza.porteus@foxnews.com. My phone number is 212-901-4503. Thanks.

I am a former news reporter who worked for WLBZ and WVII in Bangor. I can tell you that the reporter, Alan Grover, is a Maine native and has worked in the Bangor market for both WVII and WABI for several years. And I can also assure you that is him, and his voice.

The story is also being furthered on WABI's web site (www.wabi.tv) and the Bangor Daily News (www.bangornews.com)

Here's some support for Trent's opinion of school administrators... anyone have a link to the text of that statement?

"Michael Z. Williamson" wrote:

My old browser doesn't "see" the posting buttons. I'll email this to you instead. It was sent to the ME BOE

There are currently allegations that teachers are harassing children of military members, trying to teach them that their parents are "bad" for engaging in an issue decided by politicians, that the soldiers have no say in.

Commissioner Albanese issued a statement that was effectively a blowoff. It sounded, in fact, like the kind of denial one hears when adults don't believe a child is being abused.

Let's be honest: if the allegations were that children were being taught to hate people due to race, religion or sexual preference, it would be a huge issue and would have a major response. To not have that same response over these allegations indicates a bigotry and contempt for a class of people that should not be allowed to exist in any decent society.

The type of person who only follows up on complaints when it fits one's personal philosophy is a bigot. Commissioner Albanese is clearly such a bigot. His press release gave no indication that he's worried or outraged that such a situation might exist, that he intends to investigate it with any seriousness, or that he will discharge the perpetrators if the allegations are true.

His public attitude seems to be that of a '50s Klansman in public office, faced with complaints of abuse: "Oh, they're just a bunch of niggers. We'll look at it, but there's not likely any problem."

I and my fellow Soldiers, Airmen, Sailors and Marines are not "niggers" or "baby killers" or "right wing Fascists" or "peace haters" or any other epithet casually tossed about. We follow policy set by politicians. For us not to do so would create a situation identical to 4th Century Rome, where political despotism came from who could bribe the Legions to his cause.

I expect the State of Maine to take these allegations seriously. I do not advocate a witch hunt; I do advocate giving the children an honest listen and conducting an investigation. If there are in fact bigots within the system who would emotionally rape a child over actions their parents have no choice in, I do expect and demand that such teachers and administrators be removed for cause, their records noted to show that fact, and for them never to teach again.

Be assured that I will be following this issue, and it will be reported globally.

"Makin' mock o' uniforms
That guard you while you sleep
Is cheaper than them uniforms,
And they're starvation-cheap..."
--Rudyard Kipling, "Tommy"

What the HELL,where do they thing they are teaching,a madrassa.These educaters(and I use the term with a great deal of hesitation)should be fired and thier teaching certificates pulled.They should be banned from teaching for life.

In Hans Massaquoi's book "Destined to Witness," he describes his experiences growing up black (African-German) in Nazi Germany. One of the most painful passages was the scene in which he is publically humiliated by a teacher because of his race.

It appears that in Maine we have teachers with an equal capacity for cruelty to defenseless children.

I think that the teachers shouldn"t be allowed to teach or talk about any thing that does not have to do with there subject they teach unless it's about the news. But thats only when the teachers don't act out like they did with the children. I'm only 14 but I have conversation with my english class and teacher abut what the happening in the world like with North Korea and iraq.
EDward O. manues

This is typical of those who will never understand that their freedom depends on our military. To harass children because their parents have the most important job in this country is disgusting. These teachers should be fired, and deported if these reports are true. This is a hate crime!

Ms. Porteus,

I have sent e-mails to the people involved.

We will see shortly if they want to surface or keep it private.

Sparkey,

If the folks want to surface, that is their option. I will not force it upon them. Most public school systems are all but immune from outside reality no matter the media attention. These folks know it.

Besides, making that kind of noise is not something that is career enhancing, when it can be handled privately by transferring to private or home school or simply with time by moving to the next assignment.

You and I both know that poor treatment of servicemen and their dependents by local communities is proverbial and a long tradition, recent, post-Vietnam, pro-military revisionism to the contrary.

I've been following links for awhile, and have been unable to come up with the following information: What actually happened? Who specifically said what? Specifically? Hope I am not being thick, but if someone could point me to the "money 'graph", I'd appreciate it. I'm unable to play the video clip from WABI, unfortunately.

Trent:
"The current cases I am aware are from friends on military affairs mailing lists I subscribe too. Neither they nor their impacted friends wants to handle this in the public.

This is a common response from active duty military parents to this sort of thing. They and their kids have to live there after the media event is over. They don't want to make waves. Especially when they will be gone in a couple of years."

(1) What can we do to support them, and make it easier for them to go public?

(2) Are there any "short timers" (folks expecting to be moved out of town next month anyway) who might take the lead?

(3) Should we be leaning on the military command structure (or Congress) to somehow give military parents better options in such situations? If so, what? Maybe some form of psuedo-vouchers?

(4) From those unwilling to go public, can we at least get there stories out in "names changed to protect the innocent" format? [Preferably with the names of the guilty (teachers) left in. Yes it's dirty pool, but so is what they're doing. However I don't really expect you to do this, are you're a better person than I am.] At the very least I'd like the town names left in, so we can track the geographical distribution and look for chronic offenders.

(5) If those unwilling to go public give names or at least locations, maybe we can find children of non-military but patriotic folk who witnessed the event, and whose parents would be willing to apply pressure.

I'm sure many folk in these towns have no idea about this stuff, and wouldn't like it. Human nature being what it is I'm not surprised the locals take financial advantage of transients just becuase they can. It's another thing entirely to go out of your way to insult them just for the heck of it.

It's 6:34 PM Eastern Standard. Brit Hume just did a piece in his nightly Grapevine segment on this issue! I don't know if it had anything to do with my email of this morning, but I'll gladly take credit for it! :-) Congrats to all who worked to get this mentioned on the Fox News Channel! Maybe now the story will pick up some steam.

As a public school teacher, I am disgraced by the behavior of these "teachers." Rest assured, not all of us are pinko liberals!

Somebody needs to forward this to FOX news agency and get these "teachers" removed from their positions. Reprimand, I don't think so, they should be fired. I challenge any school board member to stand up to this and do the right thing.

Somebody needs to forward this to FOX news agency and get these "teachers" removed from their positions. Reprimand, I don't think so, they should be fired. I challenge any school board member to stand up to this and do the right thing.

Name names! Let the local communities and the world know who these teachers are. The verbal abuse they receive may teach them a lesson.

Name names! Let the local communities and the world know who these teachers are. The verbal abuse they receive may teach them a lesson.

CB,

I doubt it will be limited to verbal abuse.

It is my hope that no more children will be subjected to teachers with this type of insensitivity and lack of judgement. Our heroes have enough to worry about. It is a shame that our children can't be "shielded" from this moral lack of character in their own schools. Teachers that feel it is necessary to berate and betray a child because of his or her parent’s occupation, should no longer be educators. I use the word [betray], because you are role models, whether you like it or not. How can you expect a young child to respect you, when you can't even respect that child or his or her parent's?

No one wants war, but it is not the U.S. who has declared war, it is the nations that support terrorism that have declared war on the U.S. The World Trade Centers no longer stand due to terrorism. I am proud of my military, and of the fact that they fight for peace to protect this land and our freedoms. Military children deserve a great deal of gratitude from this country. Their sacrifice is almost as great as that of their parents.

In an imperfect world, it is only through strength that people (such as you) may enjoy the freedom to express your viewpoints. This strength can only be achieved through the military power of a free and conscientious society. As an adult educator, you are responsible for setting the emotional environment of tomorrows leaders. It is pathetic that you would utilize these youngsters as a catalyst for which to define your own political opinions.

Trent,
How many of these National Guards are transient? Except when they're called up for active duty, they live and work at civilian jobs. These are their homes too>

My son is a Senior in high school and he tells me about some of his teachers who are very open about their feelings against a possible war with Iraq. One of his teachers asked his class what did we do as a nation to cause the Sept. 11th attack? My son has been thrown out of class a few times for disagreeing with these teachers. It does not surprise me about the harm teachers are doing to military children. My father served in the Navy, he was a Korean War veteran and I know what military children have to put up with. My children and grandchildren are being raised to love this country and the sacrifice made by our soldiers. We will always be there to speak up for our military. God Bless the United States of America!

I am a retired military veteran of almost 30 years and if this issue in Maine and eslewhere is true, then what is wrong with our legal system? I believe that this comes under the heading of endangering the welfare of our children and even under the Federal Guidelines of a Hate Crime. The Public School System has been brainwashing our children for years under the guidelines of the NEA and I believe that it is just sad that it takes something like this to bring out the true colors instead of the RED, WHITE and BLUE.

Maybe this will be of help.

J. Duke Albanese, is Commissioner of Education of the State of Maine

This address is the Maine School Directory.
http://www.state.me.us/education/welcome.htm

And there's always:

President George W. Bush: president@whitehouse.gov

Vice President Richard Cheney: vice.president@whitehouse.gov

Contacts for Maine State Government
http://www.maine.gov/portal/government/index.html

Please tell those teachers in Maine to pick on
someone their on size. How about confronting some of their parents. I know they will tell them
where to go. Where is their compassion for these
kids and where is their patriotism. I hope they
get fired and deported.

It is not all teachers in Maine, and I am sure it happens everywhere else as well! Everytime this is mentioned, I get angry at teachers who could do this. I have lived in Maine all my life and we rarely get mentioned on the national news (even when we have great things happening here!) now this?

I'm not surprised. Shortly after moving here it became very obvious that the local school was saturated with an extremely biased faculty. My child was clearly being affected by the anti- conservative, anti-Bush and anti-American sentiments at the local public school. We are now driving 1 1/2 hrs each way to a private school. That is no easy task when one considers the long winters here in Maine, but it is worth every mile! My child understands what it means to pledge allegiance to the American flag and knows that our soldiers sacrifice every day for her privileges of freedom.

I think we need to gather the names of ALL THE TEACHERS in Maine and the City of which these military kids were being harassed. PLACE THEIR NAMES ON PUBLIC BILLBOARDS ALONG THE HIGWAYS OF MAINE.

We need to put pressure on the school boards to fire these idiots. Tell me how I can help. Let's do it.

I am saddened by the comments of these teachers to these children of my fellow military members. I am a Maine native and can think of no finer place in the world to live. I am currently on active duty and consider it an honor to serve. I know what my response as a parent would be, the same as my father and my grandfather. These teachers and administrators need to be dismissed and find different employment. The teachers and administrators should have the moral courage to express your views in the proper forum. It certainly isn't the schoolhouse playground.

Those teachers should be fired and deported. That is hatred for America and what it stands for. These teachers are abusing their privilege of being a teacher.

Maybe they are secret socialists or communists OR of the muslim faith. If they hate it to much here strip them of their citizenship.

We need a name for this scandal (and it is a scandal)... Extreme individuals taking advantage of their secure governmental post, furthering their extreme political ideals...

Sounds like 'Teacher-gate' to me...

One wonders what would have happened to these teachers if they had been desparaging about a child with a gay parent or some ethnic minority parent? How fast would they have been suspended/sanctioned then?

In Maine at least the military is a legitimate target for the extreme remarks of teachers. Welcome to the People's Republic of Maine.

This is really a National disgrace and I am in accord with most of the people who have posted. Any of them that can be proven that they are doing this should be immediately dismissed and their teaching certificates taken away. I am sure that Maine is not the only state where this is happening. I live in the state of Washington which is on the left coast and the education system here is definitely left leaning , so I wouldn't be a bit surprised if it were not going on here also. Being a retired senior citizen I am not all that aware of what is going on. I am also retired from the US Army , so this type of thing really rankles me. If you remember one of our illustrious Senators (Patty Murray) was the one who gave a speech at a high school in which the theme was "Why is bin Laden so well thought of and we are so hated" That gives you the idea of what it is like out here. You may not have heard of this because the media are prone to sweeping this kind of thing under the rug.

Im a Vietnam Veteran and a member of the Rolling Thunder Motorcycle Club. Perhaps a Rolling Thunder Motorcycle rally of 65,000 members, all Vietnam Veterans and bikers could pay a visit to the Maine Schools in a show of solidarity for America and ours troops!

John Fara: HOOAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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