The practice of Democracy in a largely-Hispanic California public school recently put the boss’s undies in a terrible ruffle. Young voters at San Francisco’s Everett Middle School apparently set America back a century or two by not electing any Latino or black children to the top four positions in last month’s student election. Principal Lee Van Haren, in a decision made before giving her undies a chance to unruffle, withheld the election results for several days in order to have a “conversation” about that pressing issue. (Note to the principal: Lee, Sweetie, you could’ve started whatever conversation on whatever topic you wanted without pulling your little tease. Instead you got people conversing about how your only possible job qualification could be owning a video of school board members whipping each other dressed as ferrets.) Hiding the tally would have been bad enough on its own, but this was the tally of a mandatory election, where ballots were handed out & collected in homeroom to ensure full participation.
In today’s climate, I can’t see how this big “conversation” (or “dialogue” or “discussion” etc. etc.) liberals keep saying they want would accomplish anything, unless you’re testing the acoustics in your new Acme Conversation Room. In the case of this election it was doomed from the start; a conversation requires at least two people with something to contribute, and Van Haren’s something account is overdrawn. Three quotes of hers from an October 20 story from the Chronicle’s sfgate.com seem to indicate some miniature game of Twister being played in her head: “I never, ever said we wouldn’t share the results or they weren’t good enough.” (Okay, fair enough, Lee.) “It was not about hurting democracy or putting diversity over democracy.” (Um, I don’t know, Lee…) “It’s not okay for a school that is really, really diverse to have the student representatives majority white.” (BULL***T, Lee.)
See, it was that dratted third quote that peed the principal’s punchbowl. For me it just seemed weird to describe a “good enough” thing as “not okay,” but then I’m not Van Haren. Or high on epoxy thinner.
Even after the pathetic charade the woman pulled at the student body’s expense, she had good opportunity to put the cuckoo back in the clock, simply with a cohesive, contrite explanation. Then she hobbled it like James Caan in Misery.
Van Haren might be shallow, unthinking, irrational, and somewhat racist, but at least her heart’s in the right place: several hundred miles from my children.
IN OTHER NEWS…
Drought update: since the people of America’s Finest City have gotten so good at cutting back on their water usage, San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer wants to return the favor with a rate hike. You know, because there’s just nothing more comforting than having less available spending money when you live in a pricey town! This is how it works: residents can record their vote at a public hearing this month, or they can check a box on the “Notice of Public Hearing” insert that came with their September bill (and doesn’t look at all like a ballot at first glance), and mail it in. For residents who happen to be in favor of the increase but just don’t know it, the city has kindly provided an additional option: don’t record a vote at all. That’s right, officials will interpret every non-vote as the uninformed constituent asking for a higher water bill. Coincidentally, alert constituents see this little ploy as officials asking for a public caning.
I’m sure it will all be fine, as long as consumers pay attention to all those extra documents enclosed in their bills. Everyone does that, right?
The super-ego letting the id run wild: the president was in New York last week when he launched another assault in his war on dignity. Speaking at a fundraiser, Obama took a swipe at the GOP candidates for pushing back against liberal journalists who confuse debate moderating with GOP pantsing: “Have you noticed that every one of these candidates say(sic) ‘Obama’s weak, Putin’s kicking sand in his face. When I talk to Putin, He’s going to straighten out.’ And then it turns out they can’t handle a bunch of CNBC moderators.” He wasn’t done: “If you can’t handle those guys, I don’t think the Chinese and the Russians are going to be too worried about you.” Yes, these words actually emerged from the face of the guy who A) whines about having one TV network unwilling to worship him, and B) eagerly surrenders his lunch money to terrorist-friendly world leaders.
I don’t know about you, but I was genuinely relieved Obama mocked the Republicans the way he did. It had been such a long time since he displayed his childish little smirk, attributed an imaginary statement to others, and projected his failings onto others, I was starting to think he was abducted by Martians and replaced with a doppelganger. I may not be fond of the president, but he certainly doesn’t deserve something as painful (so I’ve heard) as an alien probing.
Anyway, in terms of where things currently stand, it’s safe to say the Chinese aren’t too worried about Obama. Make no mistake about the Russians, though; you can bet that Putin, with every dealing he’s had with the guy, has felt plenty worried. I mean, if the president of the United States looked like he was about to soil his trousers whenever he stood within ten feet of you, you’d worry too. Any head of a hostile nation with Obama scheduled to visit would be wise to have his aides show up on the tarmac with a ceremonial box of Depends.
Or maybe it’s astigmatism: in one of TV’s most historic moments of irony, Carly Fiorina’s face was made fun of by two people who share a set with Whoopi Goldberg five days a week.
Get that in writing: Kathy Griffin recently said she wouldn’t let Ben Carson give her a pap smear. In other news, gynecologists across America have been flooding municipal courts to legally change their names to Ben Carson.