Monday, October 27, 2014

News For A Monday....

It has been reported that family members of Michael Brown, the 18 year old who was shot by Officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri, in August, got into a little family scuffle last Saturday evening over the right to sell "t-shirts and other Michael Brown items."

According to police sources, a grandmother and a cousin of Michael Brown had a stand set up in a parking lot and were selling Michael Brown t-shirts and other unnamed items. A car pulled up and (allegedly) Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, got out of the vehicle with a man whose identity has not been made public. Mrs. McSpadden allegedly said "You can't sell that s*#!," to the grandmother and cousin.

One of the relatives who was part of selling the shirts demanded to see proof that McSpadden had a patent on the items. That's when the man with McSpadden allegedly assaulted the cousin with a metal pipe and grabbed merchandise and the cash box, which supposedly contained up to $1400. They fled the scene and the cousin was taken by ambulance to the Emergency Room with facial injuries. There have been no arrests to date.

This story tends to make one wonder about the character of the Brown family. Family members selling "t-shirts and other Michael Brown items" for profit seems bad enough (inappropriate comes to mind) but to have other family members assault them on the street and take the shirts and the money, well... I'll let you draw your own conclusions.

In Utah last week a teacher at a Junior High School sent home an assignment that has parents and even school board members a bit upset. The assignment was "...take an INVENTORY of your medicine cabinet and help you and your parents determine if there is anything in your cabinet that you should strongly consider disposing of so you can keep you and your family safer and avoid the risk of drug abuse. Remember, when it comes to health we want to aim at PREVENTION."

Without mentioning the obvious grammatical errors, there is a lot wrong with the assignment.

The assignment form has spaces on it for the student to actually write down what medications were found in the cabinet, whether or not it is a prescription and what it is used for.

Many believe the assignment is part of a Common Core curriculum that seems to be getting more and more invasive of students' family privacy. Some assignments noted to date have been about extramarital affairs, "Who's your baby-daddy" DNA testing, sexual activity, pornographic literature, and an assortment of other questionable subjects. So is this just one more example of inappropriate homework?

One student's mother wrote a letter to the school and then posted it on a local Facebook page. "Although it may be a good idea for parents to do an inventory of their medicine cabinet, I believe it is inappropriate for students to counsel their parents, or report to the school what that inventory is. It is a complete invasion of privacy," the letter said.

I must agree. A teacher has absolutely no business inquiring what is in the family medicine cabinets of her students nor should junior high students be told by a teacher that they should advise their parents about medications in said cabinet.

School officials say they were blindsided by the assignment when it was brought to their attention, that it was not part of school curriculum and that the teacher created the assignment and the form on her own.

"Sometimes we're blindsided, we don't know if a teacher is giving something out that they shouldn't be doing," a spokesperson said. "And so we absolutely want parents to come forward, let us know…. I wouldn't be comfortable having my own children go through my medicine cabinet."

Aren't teachers supposed to submit lesson plans to school administrators for review - particularly if they come up with something that's not in the curriculum....?

In the Middle East - thw Obama administration said the other day that the "moderate Syrian rebels" we will be arming and training will not be trained to take back any ground that has already been conquered by ISIS but instead will focus on maintaining what ISIS has not yet taken. So with the encouragement and blessing of the Obama administration, ISIS has established their caliphate and will be a permanent item in the region. 

President Obama's statement weeks ago that we will "degrade and ultimately destroy ISIL" (his label for ISIS, which I have discussed in the past) seems to be a hollow promise. How "destroyed" can one be if no one is taking back what you've stolen? Allowing ISIS to keep what they have gained and simply preventing them from advancing is not "degrading and destroying" them. They've already won. In reality it's about trying to improve his pathetic poll numbers by taking action that in actuality is inaction. But what can we expect from a man who, within three short years, allowed all of our hard won victories in Iraq to be reversed and armed the brutal terrorists who have moved in?

Finally - here is a question that has run through my mind since I first heard about President Obama sending troops to West Africa to help fight Ebola. Why are we sending ground troops to Africa to fight a disease (Ebola) that has killed just over 4000 people but we aren't sending ground troops to Iraq to fight a disease (ISIS) that has killed over 10000 people?

Both diseases are deadly. ISIS has been more deadly that Ebola so far, yet the President will only commit troops to fight Ebola - something they have not been properly trained to do. He won't allow them to fight ISIS, for which they have had extensive training. It makes no sense to me. Putting troops in harm's way is the same either way. But at least the enemy that is ISIS can be seen.

2016 cannot arrive quickly enough. It's time America had a real leader again rather than a man who leads from behind, governs through poll numbers and supports other countries (and Islam) over the United States. It's time to take our country back from the tyranny that is the Obama administration.

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