Saturday, August 28, 2010

Cockroaches Infest Our Schools

Did you ever have one of those roommates whose tolerance for mess, if not downright filth, far exceeded your own? The kind of roomy who never takes out the garbage, who piles dirty dishes in the sink without even a rinse? Someone rarely burdened with the need for soap?

If you did, did you also enjoy that life-altering event that so often is part of the total package? You know the one: when you get up in the middle of the night for a glass of water, go to the kitchen, turn on the lights, only to see what must be hundreds of cockroaches, of every size, ability and socio-ethnic background, scatter to the four walls?

You have?


Now to answer the inevitable question: "what does this have to do with our schools---are you saying the cafeteria is infested?" No, dear reader, this is not about cafeteria food nor will it explain why the cornbread is so often crunchy.

This is about educators, parents, and testing. The recent testing scandals which threatened to expose the public school sham has nearly blown over and as bad as it may appear to the casual observer, the real problem has been adeptly obfuscated.

So let's explore this analogy.

Consider that the tests which public school apologists and propagandists have demonized are the light. And it is a diffuse but bright light, casting no shadow and leaving no dark corner.

And the cockroaches, well, those are our self-congratulatory educators. They are the teachers, principals, administrators, board members and "colleges of education" manufacturing the aforementioned, who feast on each morsel of denial cast off by parents who cannot, or more often simply will not, do what is right. It is these parents who are the filthy roommates creating a rich habitat for vermin.

These are also the roommates that will declare you a neat-freak, a neurotic who needs to lighten up. They may even blame the light, for without it there is no visible problem. Some will even go as far as to justify the roaches, claiming they fill a vital role in our ecosystem.

And the roaches are doing what roaches do, getting fat dining on what should not even be there and making more roaches.

And what are we, the responsible roommate, to do? For far too long we've avoided the inevitable confrontation with the roommate. We've left the light off, or worse, simply gone after what we want, ignoring the mess until it becomes unbearable, then doing only a hasty, superficial cleanup. But now we are way over these roommates, the mess has gotten far too large to ignore and the vermin are a clear and present danger. It is time to act. We must call the exterminator, clean up the mess and show those filthy roommates the door.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Going Our Way

Dunwoody is home to a new crowd of whiners. These folks, once ardent supporters of cityhood, now see things are not "going their way". They have stopped touting "local control" and are increasingly mumbling "out of control". Their new rally cry is "Not What We Bargained For!"

Those in The Other Dunwoody who were dragged, by these very fools, into this mess with eyes wide open are probably wondering, then as now, "what were they thinking?" Well, they weren't. And many still aren't.

They voted for a referendum while the powers-that-now-be withheld "task force" documents from the public. Once the referendum passed, these whiners elected a cadre of entitled refugees from a homeowners association, long frustrated that their only power lay in the law suit and gave these busy bodies the power to tax, the authority to write law and an armed force to ensure ordinary citizens knew and stayed in their place. They stood by as city positions were filled by those with connections rather than those with qualifications--after all, they felt they had connections as well. They all but cheered when the city did an end-around to effectively deny some their constitutional rights. They gave no notice to the city arbitrarily raising occupation taxes--without warning or explanation. Surely they could have acted when the council engaged in foolish antics around the issues of garbage, chickens and signs. Or become a bit alarmed that while our roads fall further into decay, the council is voting itself gold-plated benefits (not a raise, mind you) or heading off on junkets retreats. They did not.

One would have thought this dung heap they themselves piled up in city hall would be noxious to even their numbed nostrils. That this stench would be a clue, a sign that something was amiss. Not so.

But now a straw has broken the backs of even these sturdy camels. Someone is suggesting their cars are not pleasing to the eye--that limits must be placed on public display of their "automotive yard art". Yes dear readers, constitutional rights be damned, chickens are for frying and who cares whose friend is draining the city coffers, but you better not touch them cars! Dunwoody surely has more folks who are compensating than any other place on the planet.

But this is not the time to jeer and laugh at these poor unfortunates who are just now joining ranks with The Other Dunwoody. Instead it is time to embrace them, to soften the blow as they come to realize what many already know: "that in the real world, where we live, most of the time things don't go your way."