Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Thou Shalt not Speak Ill of the President

Thou Shalt not Speak Ill of the President
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
May 22, 2012

Obama defense hysteria continues to grow disproportionately out of control to the point that this plague is infecting the young minds in the public schools.

Tanya Dixon-Neely, a social studies teacher at North Rowan High School in Spencer, NC, threatened students in her class that they could be arrested for “speaking ill of the president.” The comment was recorded by a classmate of junior Hunter Rogers, the student with whom Dixon-Neely had an exchange about Barack Obama and Mitt Romney each having a past history involving an incident of bullying.

Romney’s alleged bullying has been front page news, splashed across the pages of The Washington Post ad nauseum, while Obama admitted to his bullying within the confines of one of his penned books, Dreams from My Father, where he tells of shoving a girl to the ground. When Hunter mentioned this incident, first Dixon-Neely claimed to have no knowledge of Obama’s indiscretion, but knew of Romney’s, then reminded Hunter of how it is wrong to disrespect the president.

“As a teacher, I am not supposed to allow you to disrespect the president,” Dixon-Neely said in the recorded exchange.

“I was shocked by this kind of behavior in the school,” said Hunter’s mother Gina Rogers during the Fox & Friends interview, adding she didn’t know it was “this extreme…. She is not teaching factual information Rogers said of Dixon-Neely.

Congratulations to Hunter for standing his ground, and doing so with sourced facts – a vital skill all students need.

While not released by the Rowan-Salisbury School District, Dixon-Neely’s name had been discerned by Breitbart News. And also, while not initially reprimanded for her actions, Dixon-Neely has been suspended with pay.

Hunter told the Fox News morning broadcast Fox & Friends on Tuesday, May 22 that there are typically “open discussions” in Dixon-Neely’s class, yet, further said, “she doesn’t want to hear anything but what she believes in.” This, of course, runs counter to the generous notion of open discussions.

Instead of stifling free speech, the teacher should encourage a “fair and balanced” exchange, to borrow a slogan.

“If you disagree, you get berated and put down,” said Hunter, adding “I just decided to get some proof…. “I’ve been taught that no one can take your opinion… or your freedom of speech.”

Hunter’s unnamed friend’s recording of the class proceedings a week ago clearly depict a teacher who, aside from having a poor command of the English language, is also deeply in the tank for Obama, defending him at every turn.

Dixon-Neely also demonstrates a lack of subject matter knowledge, particularly history and the Constitution, by telling the class they could be arrested for “speaking ill of the president,” yet, hypocritically, was called to the carpet by Hunter regarding Dixon-Neely’s foul-mouthed epithet about former President George W. Bush.

Hunter said on the recorded exchange that everybody talked shit about Bush, to which Dixon-Neely responded that Bush was shitty. Yet nothing was said of the language used in Dixon-Neely’s classroom, which is wholly unacceptable by both student and teacher, but the teacher should know better and her usage of the vulgarity is akin to a tacit acceptance by her student’s use.

Having taught grades six through college, opining on political issues is both volatile and frowned upon by administrations at times with stern repercussions. That it took days for the Rowan-Salisbury School District to suspend Dixon-Neely is disturbing – that should have been a no-brainer. That she should be given a vacation – her suspension is with pay – is unconscionable.

Dixon-Neely should not only lose her job, but be stripped of any tenure she may have accumulated. No doubt the teachers union will be defending Dixon-Neely at every turn, demonstrating that the union is there for the weak and ineffective teachers, not the good and effective educators, in a system that only continues to fail the children in the public schools.

Clearly this is a social studies teacher who lacks basic knowledge of law, history and the United States Constitution – three of the tenets of the subject that she allegedly is an expert, let alone in which she is instructing others. Ironically, a fortune find in a cookie just last night read: “to teach is to learn twice.” Did Dixon-Neely even learn once?

A message must be sent that the classrooms are not for political propaganda or for mesmerizing students into becoming drones and liberal hacks.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

1 comment:

  1. This is what the unions have given education. The sooner the unions are out the sooner the teachers can be reviewed and teachers that really want to teach are in the classrooms again and our children reap the benefits. Good article Sanford.