Standing Against the Raging Water: The current isn’t always right

Halloween of 2011 for me was a day of rebirth instead of mocking death with the typical rituals of that pagan holiday. My sister brought twins into the world so a good part of my day was spent at the hospital. However, over the weekend the No Lakota Levy had lost between 500 to 700 signs and Channel 19 was covering the story where Tiffany was kind enough to see me at the hospital as the twins were born to discuss the missing signs. You can see that report at this link.

As I thought about the signs I didn’t want to say on camera that I thought that it was radical elements of the Move Forward Campaign, the PTA groups, the leftist teachers, the students whipped up into anger by their teachers in class, which had stolen the signs or vandalized them into the wrecks seen in the Channel 19 report. What gives me the right to make that assertion………..experience.

I know that there are many things within the Lakota School District that are actually quite sinister. This could be said for any large organization. But just because this is the typical case, it is certainly not an endorsement. A story that came to me on the wings of a little bird that spoke to me on a recent fall day uttered a chirping dialog of severe concern regarding high level administrator’s behavior at Lakota East when parents tried to find alternatives to the funding problems that faced the school last year after the levy defeat. The little bird told me what I had always suspected, that the administration at Lakota is much more concerned with passing school levies, obtaining additional money for their inflated contracts than the actual health of the district.

The little bird said, “Many of us parents were trying to save the band program from severe cuts by having a fund raiser, where we could have covered all the costs for that extracurricular activity. We wanted to pay for it ourselves but were told we weren’t allowed.”

“Why,” I asked.

“Because we were told that the band was an emotional issue that the public enjoyed, and that if the public didn’t pass the levy, it would be taken away until they did pass a levy.”

“Are you serious,” I said.

“Yes. It was a very frustrating situation.”

What that means is that administrators would not allow the help of these parents to save their extracurricular program with efforts of their own because the school wanted to cut those programs as punishment for not passing the levy. For those of you, who have any doubt that the busing was removed as a purely extortive tactic, doubt no longer? Lakota and every other public school even though they do it with a smile on their faces are radical organizations that participate in behavior that we’d find appealing if it came from a thief, or a mugger. But since it comes from a school, we put blinders on to and forget about the behavior.

As I stepped away from the birth of my new niece and nephew to give the Channel 19 interview, a long time family friend that I have known since she was a very little girl stated, “Why is he doing this?” You see, most of my family is not with me on my beliefs of saying no to school levies, and they absolutely do not agree with me on Issue 2 which I am 100% for. The reason is in my family there are teachers, superintendents, professional students, policeman, nurses and city workers who are unionized. I come from a family that started its roots at Fisher Body in Hamilton and my best friend growing up had parents where the mother was a Lakota teacher, and the dad worked at the Norwood GM plant. My family and I haven’t spoke much since all this started and that’s part of the price for taking a position like this. This is why people tend not to take firm positions, because they will often not do the right thing because in doing the right thing it may affect a loved one. So when I stepped out to speak with Tiffany, of leaving my wife in the waiting room to defend me, the obvious question on everyone’s mind was, “Why is he doing this, and can’t it wait till tomorrow? Why is he doing it while the babies are being born? Does he want to tarnish their first hours with this rebellious diatribe of his?”

The long time family friend said to my wife after I left, “I hope the levy passes because I’m tired of having to drive my kids to school. It’s really hard on me.”

“But don’t you see that’s why they are doing it,” My wife said.

But the long time family friend didn’t care. She just became flustered and turned her attention to the rest of my family who agreed with her. After all, a Friends television rerun was coming up later, and that was far more important. The emotions of the moment were supposed to be focused on the children being born exclusively.

When I came back up from my interview, I wasn’t surprised to learn about the transaction. In my world all things have to be done at the same time. The joy of new family arrivals must receive the proper ceremony, but the battles outside in the world do not stop. All tasks must be achieved simultaneously. But it is just such a sentiment that these schools use as extortion against family friends like the one mentioned. She’s a sweet girl, and the only fault she exhibits is a blissful ignorance. If this were the Matrix movie, she metaphorically speaking has taken the “blue pill.” She doesn’t want to see or question the deeper meaning of anything, and people like her will always be victims of extortion by some political power.

I mention all this so that you can know that I have no respect for those of you who say, I will vote for the school levy because my wife is a school teacher. Or because my father is a superintendent, or any other title in public education, and the same holds true for cops and firefighters over Issue 2. Your vote should not be dictated by what some family member does. It should be based on what you know to be right in your heart, even if everyone you know and care about plead with you to do otherwise for their own personal comfort.

Life is not about being comfortable. It’s about actually living and doing your best to do the right thing. The right thing is not to jump off a cliff just because everyone else does. Sometimes, everyone IS wrong and you may be the only voice of reason. And if you don’t let that voice be heard, then you did wrong. They may not listen, but it won’t be because you didn’t try.

So have a little respect for yourself, and don’t let yourself get pushed around, even if your family members tell you that it’s acceptable. IT’S NOT! If they choose to swallow the blue pill, fine. But don’t participate in open extortion and expect to look in the mirror and respect yourself. Sure, you may have the support of your family, but that’s not enough. Because ultimately, you have to feel right about what you do inside and they can’t give that to you. The terms of living must be met by the individual, not a collective sum. Believe me; I am speaking from extensive experience.


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15 thoughts on “Standing Against the Raging Water: The current isn’t always right

  1. Shame on the church lady blaming the wind and rain. She knows better unless she thinks God is on Lakota’s side and selectively singled out the No Lakota signs. An intelligent response would be to condemn anyone on either side who uses such tactics to try to silence the opposition.

    The action speaks so loudly to the mentality and methods of the zealots backing the levy. They are bullies who lack logical basis for arguing their case on non-emotional grounds. Hopefully the desperation of their actions will undermine their cause. If this is what they are willing to do at risk of getting caught in the open, just image what must be going on behind the scenes.


  2. Congratulations to you, your sister and your family on the new babies. This is the second set of twins that I have been told about in two days. Must be twins season.

    Regarding your essay and the destruction of the “NO” signs; you can bet Sandy Wheatly is not a saint and knows full well what is happening. Wind and rain is very selective these days. The elements can pick and choose which signs to blow down, bend the wires and tear up. NO signs are the only signs the elements don’t like. Isn’t that interesting Ms. Wheatly. Freak of nature I guess.

    A few years ago Msssssss. Wheatly was the president of the school board. There was a slight controversy regarding an explicitly sexual novel that was being required reading in some of the English classes. Many parents were upset about the book, but the board did what most boards do, stacked the room with union members and demanded that the book be part of the curriculum. One after the other the strident teachers got up and “demanded” their right to select the reading material. Only a few parents got up, but they were quickly “booed” and made fun of for being prudish. Ms. Wheatly held up a thick tomb on “civility” and said that the people dissenting should read that book. I’ll never forget the smug look on her face and that of Ms. Kathleen Klink, the superintendent. Same as saying “shut up and get out.” Civility was never Ms. Wheatlys nor Ms. Klinks finer tuned skill.


  3. Rich, this isn’t 100% gremane to the topic of this blog post but I just had to share it. Just now as I walked to work in downtown Cincinnati I came to the crosswalk in front of our building. As I approached the sign said “don’t walk” but as is common practice downtown at 6:30AM, a group of people were crossing anyway. As I neared the intersection I could see that there was no traffic for blocks. One lone woman from our company was still standing at the intersection, staring at the traffic sign. I crossed, and when I got to the other side I stopped to watch her rather than go into my building. Sure enough, a minute or two later when the sign changed to “walk” she proceeded to cross the intersection. She obviously has been indoctrinated all her life to not question authority, even in the form of a “don’t walk” sign.

    Yes, the lady in question is a union member. I’m just sayin’.


    1. LOL,that’s right, poor woman. I can’t imagine waiting for directions to make a decision. It does fit into this topic. Busing cuts equal…………need more money. It’s a created response due to a lifetime of indoctrination.

      Thanks for the Uncle Rich stuff. Not my first time, but it’s always nice a little bit to see a new life enter the world full of limitless possibilities. I get frustrated with some of them as they get older and narrow down their scope. But it’s nice to see the sense of wonder at the start of life.

      And the church lady is easy to read. I’m surprised a bit in that response.


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